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Texas Property Insurers Consider Changes to Hail Policies

Texas is in the midst of a hail lawsuit crisis. Tens of thousands of lawsuits have been filed across the state, with dozens more being filed every day. Many of the lawsuits involve meritless claims solicited by case-runners...more

Who’s the Boss? In Policies Covering Multiple Insureds, the Details Matter

Liability policies for businesses are subject to a number of common exclusions; many, for example, do not cover liability to employees of the business who are injured on the job. Frequently, those policies do provide...more

Perspectives on Insurance Recovery

Welcome to the latest edition of Pillsbury’s Perspectives on Insurance Recovery. As this 2015 edition of Perspectives demonstrates, our team is working on the most challenging issues—from cyber-insurance and complex claims...more

Sixth Circuit: A Michigan Collapse Extension Overrides Exclusions for Cracking and Defective Design

In Joy Tabernacle — The New Testament Church v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 2015 WL 3824733, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10707 (6th Cir., Jun. 22, 2015), a unanimous panel of the federal Court of Appeals recently held that a...more

New Jersey Developer Wins on “Occurrence” and “Property Damage”; Appellate Division finds Subcontractors’ Faulty Construction...

The Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, has issued a very important decision for real estate developers and general contractors whose insurance companies have reserved rights or denied coverage for damage caused...more

Seventh Circuit Holds Insured Entitled to a New Roof for Purely Cosmetic Hail Damage

The Seventh Circuit is becoming a difficult venue for insurers. In November we reported that the Court of Appeals had held that the phrase “continuous or repeated exposure” in definition of occurrence meant that a continuous...more

Equities Favor Subrogating Insurer Over Subcontractor That Performed Defective Work

In Valley Crest Landscape v. Mission Pools (No. G049060, filed 6/26/15, ord. pub. 7/2/15), a California appeals court held that equities favor an insurer seeking equitable subrogation over a subcontractor that agreed to...more

Texas Supreme Court Rules that CERCLA PRP Letters and Enforcement Proceedings Are “Suits” Subject to the Duty to Defend Under...

On June 26, 2015, the Texas Supreme Court held that enforcement proceedings under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (“CERCLA”)—including the issuance of a “PRP letter” notifying...more

Federal Agencies Finalize Flood Insurance Rules

Federal regulators have finalized a joint rule that amends regulations relating to loans secured by properties in special flood hazard areas. The final rule implements changes to the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973...more

Florida Appellate Court Rejects Bid to Curb Insureds’ Assignments to Contractors

Many property insurance policies contain terms that prohibit assignment, but Florida law has long deemed those terms inoperative once a loss has occurred. E.g., W. Fla. Grocery Co. v. Teutonia Fire Ins. Co., 74 Fla. 220...more

New York Court: Undefined Word “Occurrence” in a Deductible Provision Must be Construed by the Finder of Fact

Many property policies expressly define the term “occurrence” to encompass a series of similar and related events. Last month, however, in Rokeach v. Hanover Ins. Co., 2015 WL 2400097, U.S. Dist. LEXIS 6580 (May 19, 2015,...more

It Means What It Says: Federal Court of Appeals Rejects Insurer Attempt to Read Limitations Into Additional Insured Endorsement

In the world of insurance coverage litigation, insurance companies like to accuse policyholders of attempting to expand coverage terms, or limit the scope of exclusions, beyond the language’s plain meaning. “The policy means...more

How the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's Decision in Mutual Benefit Will Affect Your Business Insurance Coverage

On May 26, 2015, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court handed down its much anticipated decision in Mutual Benefit Ins. Co. v. Christos Politsopoulos. The decision is good news for policyholders, particularly those who use...more

A House of a Different Color: The Changing Role of Appraisal Panels

Minnesota’s severe weather season is here. With that season comes the possibility of hail, heavy rain, lightning, and other weather-related threats that can quickly result in serious property damage to residential and...more

Missouri Court Clarifies What Constitutes An Ensuing Loss

Last week in Performance Arts Cmty. Improvement Dist. v. ACE Amer. Ins. Co., 2015 WL 3491292, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 71592 (W.D. Mo., June 3, 2015), a federal court in Missouri shot down an insured’s arguments that a wall...more

New Jersey State Court Rules Damage Caused by Superstorm Sandy Not Subject to Flood Sublimit

In a decisive victory for policyholders, Judge Thomas Vena of the Essex County Superior Court in New Jersey ruled that significant damages incurred by Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (“PSEG”) as a result of storm surge...more

Will Insurers Respond To The Texas Floods?

May 2015 was a month of record rain for Texas. Meteorologists reported that in May alone, 37.3 trillion gallons of water fell in Texas — enough to cover the entire state with 8 inches of water. The nonstop barrage has caused...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending May 22, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Duty to Disclose/Vacant Property: plaintiff failed to present competent, substantial evidence of existence of fact materially affecting value of property and did not prove defendants had actual...more

Indiana Court Nixes Requests for Reinsurance and Reserves

Early last month a federal court in Indianapolis barred a policyholder from seeking the claims and underwriting files of the defendant carrier’s reinsurer in Indianapolis Airport Auth. v. Travelers Property Cas. Co. of Amer.,...more

Illinois Court Holds Vacancy Clause Does Not Bar Vandalism and Theft Claim by Mortgagee

In a case of first impression in Illinois, a unanimous panel of the state’s Appellate Court recently addressed the interplay between a vacancy clause and a mortgagee provision and held that the insured’s failure to comply...more

Are the Days Numbered for a Free Pass for Liability Insurers?

Next week the California Supreme Court will hear argument in Fluor Corporation v. Superior Court, a case which raises (again) the question whether an insurer must provide coverage for third party claims arising from injuries...more

Calculating Title Insurance Claims: Reduction in Value vs. Insured Claim

After a mortgagor filed bankruptcy, a lender brought claims under a ship mortgage insurance title policy. [See, First Am. Bank v. First Am. Transp. Title Ins. Co., 759 F.3d 427 (5th Cir. 2014).] The lender appealed the...more

Iowa Court: Anti-Concurrent Causation Language Mandates That the Jury Determine Whether an Excluded Peril Was One Cause of the...

Last month, we discussed a recent Texas Supreme Court decision that enforced an anti-concurrent causation (ACC) clause.  The month of April also saw a unanimous panel on Iowa’s intermediate level appellate court do the same...more

District of Colorado: “First-Party Claimant” Under State Bad Faith Statute is Not Synonymous With First-Party Bad Faith Under...

Nat’l Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, PA v. Intrawest ULC, et al., No. 13-cv-00079-PAB-KMT, 2015 WL 1326199 (D. Colo. Mar. 20, 2015). The U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado denies an insurer’s motion to...more

Arizona Court: Argument that All Business Income Loss Caused by a Wildfire is Covered is “Off Base”

Several weeks ago in White Mt. Communities Hosp., Inc. v. Hartford Cas. Ins. Co., 2015 WL 1755372, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 50900 (D. Ariz., Apr. 17, 2015), an Arizona federal court underscored that business interruption losses...more

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