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In Overhead and Profit Class Actions, The Third Trade’s No Longer The Charm

When repairs to a damaged home reach a certain level of complexity, they call for supervision by a general contractor, who receives a percentage of the actual repair costs as “general contractor’s overhead and profit” or...more

Missouri Court: “Equivalent” Requires that Replacement Siding be Both Equal in Value and Virtually Identical

In December, we published a post about a Minnesota Supreme Court case that held that under a replacement cost policy, the phrase “comparable material and quality” meant that all of the siding on 20 buildings had to be...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

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending June 19, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE: Tax Deed Sale/Due Process: after certified letter notifying property owner of tax deed sale returned unopened and unclaimed, due process required clerk of court take reasonable steps to notify...more

Washington Supreme Court Addresses the Meaning of “Collapse”

Washington State has long been a jurisdiction with no judicial pronouncement as to the meaning of the term “collapse” in a property insurance policy. This changed on June 18, 2015, when the Washington Supreme Court issued its...more

Appraisers’ Failure to Perform Assessment of Property’s Existence or Damage is Reversible Error

In Lee v. California Capital Insurance Co. (No. A136280; filed 6/18/15), a California Court of Appeal held that it was error for an appraisal panel to assign loss values to items simply because they were listed in the...more

Florida’s Third District Finds Existence of a Question of Fact Regarding Whether Notice of a Hurricane Claim was Timely Precludes...

In Laquer v. Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, 2015 Fla. App. Lexis 7570 (Fla. 3d DCA May 20, 2015), the Third District reversed a trial court’s order granting partial summary judgment to an insurer because an...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending June 5 & 12, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Lien Priority: claimant’s judgment lien related back to recording of lis pendens and therefore took priority over competing judgment lien obtained after lis pendens but before entry of claimant’s...more

CFPB Asserts Sweeping RESPA Enforcement Authority In First Appellate Decision

In a decision asserting broad authority for the CFPB and which is certain to set the tone for future CFPB appellate rulings, Bureau director Richard Cordray recently issued the Bureau’s first decision from an appeal of a...more

New Rhode Island Banking Regulations to Promote Uniformity

Rhode Island has repealed certain banking regulations and replaced them with new regulations in order to promote uniformity. Banking Regulations 98-14 “Licensees”, 98-14.1 “Lenders and Loan Brokers”, and 98-14.4 “Check...more

Regional Bank Agrees to Pay Over $200 Million for Alleged Violations of the False Claims Act

On June 1, a regional bank agreed to pay the United States $212.5 million to resolve allegations that it knowingly violated the False Claims Act by originating and underwriting FHA-insured mortgage loans that did not meet...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

Montana Supreme Court Affirms Rule Requiring Insurer to Demonstrate Prejudice Resulting from Insured’s Late Notice

On May 29, 2015, the Montana Supreme Court affirmed the application of the notice-prejudice rule in cases of third-party claims for damages. Atlantic Casualty Ins. Co. v. Greytak, 2015 MT 149, OP 14-0412 (Mt. 2015). The rule...more

Florida’s Immune System: No First-Party Bad Faith Claims Against The State-Created Property Insurer

Earlier this month, in Citizens Property Insurance Corp. v. Perdido Sun Condominium Association, Inc., No. SC14-185 (Fla. May 14, 2015), the Supreme Court of Florida held that the immunity from suit granted to Citizens under...more

Insurance Coverage – Duty to Defend – Intentional Acts

Shelly Albert v. Mid-Century Insurance Company - Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District (May 20, 2015) - Generally, when an act by an insured is intentional, Courts have consistently held that there is no...more

CFPB Director Cordray Issues First-Ever Agency Appellate Decision in RESPA Case

The Director of the Federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Richard Cordray, issued a decision yesterday in the first appeal of a Bureau administrative enforcement action. Cordray’s decision upholds in part,...more

Ninth Circuit Holds Property Damage Directly Caused By Fire

In Stankova v. Metropolitan Property & Casualty Insurance Company, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 8935 (9th Cir. May 29, 2015), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, applying Arizona law, had the opportunity to address the concept of...more

Ninth Circuit: Under Arizona Law Mudslide Can Be Covered as the Direct Result of Fire

Last Friday, a unanimous panel of the Ninth Circuit held that loss from the excluded peril of mudslide occurring one month after a wildfire could be covered as the “direct” result of the blaze. In Stankova v. Metropolitan...more

Oklahoma HB 1123 Shortens the Time to File Mortgage Releases

Last month, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin signed into law a variety of bills affecting mortgage loan servicers. One bill of note, Oklahoma HB 1123, decreases the time in which a mortgage release must be filed after a mortgage...more

Georgia Court: Policy Does Not Require Insured to Produce Recordings of Her Conversations With the Carrier

On May 20th, a federal court in Georgia held that the standard “requirements in case of loss” language compelling the insurer to turn over her books and records during the adjustment process did not require the production of...more

California Court Considers Intentional Acts Exclusion in Homeowners Policy

In Albert v. Mid-Century Insurance Company, 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 431 (April 28, 2015, status changed from published to unpublished May 20, 2015), the California Court of Appeal had occasion to consider whether the...more

Conclusory Allegations Held Insufficient to Support Declaratory Relief on Right to Independent Counsel or Allocation of Defense...

In Centex Homes v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co. (No. E060057, filed 5/22/15), a California Court of Appeal held that a developer’s declaratory relief lawsuit seeking a declaration of the right to independent counsel was...more

Oklahoma Court Holds the Policyholder Can Also Be the Vandal

Earlier this week an Oklahoma federal court addressed a mortgagee’s claim for vandalism loss – a topic we also discussed in Wednesday’s post. In American Modern Home Ins. Co. v. Tulsa Fed. Credit Union, 2015 WL 2372549, 2015...more

CFPB Enforcement Action Appeals: Quick Resolution with Unchecked Discretion

On March 9, 2015, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Richard Cordray presided over oral argument in the first appeal hearing of an administrative enforcement action. The appeal involves two companies that...more

Pennsylvania Joins Oklahoma, Bans Homeowners Insurers From Attributing Earthquakes to Fracking

Last month we reported that the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner had issued a bulletin cautioning earthquake insurers against denying claims on the basis that the quake was attributable to a man-made cause, which is to say oil...more

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