Personal Injury Civil Procedure Insurance

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When a Policy Limits Offer is Not Enough: A Cautionary Tale of a Failure to Settle Case

In a recent unpublished decision, the California Court of Appeals upheld a $3 million judgment against an auto liability insurer that rejected proposed language in a settlement agreement, notwithstanding the insurer’s policy...more

Florida DCAs Weigh in on Allstate Case; PIP Litigation Now Headed to Supreme Court

The Florida Supreme Court soon will hear arguments in the case of Florida Wellness & Rehabilitation vs. Allstate Fire & Casualty Insurance Co., which pits medical providers against the automobile insurer on the issue of fees...more

Wisconsin Supreme Court Holds Insurer Is Entitled To Subrogation Despite Fact That Insured Was Not “Made Whole”

In Dufour v. Progressive Classic Ins. Co., 2016 WI 59 (Wis. 2016), Dairyland Insurance Company’s insured sustained physical injuries and damage to his vehicle following an automobile accident with an underinsured tortfeasor....more

Subrogation recovery did not violate the made-whole-rule and was not in bad faith per Wisconsin Sup. Ct.

It is highly unusual to find an insurance bad faith case which stems from an insurance company’s subrogation recovery. On July 6th, Wisconsin’s highest court had such a case, reversing the appellate court and holding that...more

Not Seeing Double: In Reversal, New York Court Holds That Third-Party Liability Payments May Not Offset UIM Benefits

In New York, uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage “does not function … to fully compensate … insureds for their injuries.” Weiss v. Tri-State Consumer Ins. Co., 98 A.D.3d 1107, 951 N.Y.S.2d 191 (2d Dep’t 2012). UIM...more

Defence & Indemnity - June 2016: II. LIABILITY ISSUES #3

Both the legal/registered owner and lessor and the beneficial owner and lessor of a vehicle are vicariously liable for the lessee’s vehicular negligence but only to the liability cap for lessors. Graham (Litigation...more

Defence & Indemnity - June 2016: I. INSURANCE ISSUES

A. Where a party pleads equitable relief (such as rescission, estoppel or relief from forfeiture) with respect to an insurance policy, the claim cannot be heard by a jury Maynard v. Alberta Motor Assn., 2015 ABQB 564,...more

Nevada Adopts Cumis Counsel Requirement – Who’s Next?

In September 2015, the Nevada Supreme Court issued a decision in State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co. v. Hansen, 131 Nev. Adv. Op. 74, which held that Nevada law requires an insurer to provide independent Cumis counsel when there...more

Eighth Circuit to insurers: Settlement evaluation must constantly adapt to litigation developments

A recent decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit taught an insurer a costly lesson about trying to avoid extra-contractual liability: Insurers must constantly reevaluate their settlement position throughout...more

Colorado Supreme Court Limits Use of Extrinsic Evidence and Reasonable Expectations Doctrine

On Monday, the Colorado Supreme Court issued its decision in American Family Mut. Ins. Co. v. Hansen, No. 14SC99 (Colo. June 20, 2016), holding that extrinsic evidence can only be used to interpret ambiguous policy language,...more

New York Court Holds Pollution Exclusion Applicable to Love Canal Claims

In its recent decision in Cincinnati Insurance Co. v. Roy’s Plumbing, Inc., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75958 (W.D.N.Y. June 10, 2016), the United States District Court for the Western District of New York had occasion to consider...more

The Duty to Follow-up Part II: When The Underlying Litigation Changes

Last month, we discussed the duty to follow-up in the context of an offer to settle made by a tort claimant and how neglect of that duty cost an insurer dearly by converting a claim that could have been settled for $25,000...more

Big Win for Policyholders in NY: “All Sums” Allocation, Vertical Exhaustion Apply

On May 3, 2016, the New York Court of Appeals issued a much-anticipated and significant decision on allocation and exhaustion issues in the context of long-tail liability insurance. The case was styled Viking Pump, Inc. v....more

Defence & Indemnity - April 2016: II. LIABILITY ISSUES

Where an owner consents to possession of a vehicle to the driver, conditions on that consent do not bind third parties who are injured or suffer loss. Fernandes v. Araujo, 2015 ONCA 571 [4179]...more

Illinois Federal Court Transfers “Late Notice” Reinsurance Dispute To Pennsylvania

R&Q Reinsurance Company issued a facultative reinsurance certificate to St. Paul Fire & Marine Insurance Company, which reinsured a policy issued by St. Paul to Walter E. Campbell, Co. The broker who placed the certificate...more

NY High Court’s ‘All Sums’ Allocation Ruling in Viking Pump is a Game Changer

On May 3, 2016, New York’s high court took a giant step forward in protecting policyholders facing latent injury claims, allowing them to avoid multiple deductibles, retentions and insolvent coverage. In the Matter of Viking...more

New York’s Highest Court Rules in Favor of “All Sums” and Vertical Attachment in Certified Question from Delaware Supreme Court

In the recent decision of Viking Pump, Inc., et al. v. TIG Insurance Co., et al., 2016 N.Y. LEXIS 1018 (N.Y. May 3, 2016), the New York Court of Appeals (New York’s highest court), on questions certified by the Delaware...more

Eighth Circuit Holds Insureds’ Miller-Shugart Agreement Breached Policy’s Cooperation Clause

In its recent decision in American Family Mut. Ins. Co. v. Donaldson, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7499 (8th Cir. Apr. 26, 2016), the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, applying Minnesota law, had occasion to...more

Settling Parties Beware: Failing to Provide Notice to Your Insurer Before Settling May Doom Your Chance of Recovery

On April 25, 2016, the Colorado Supreme Court issued a decision in Travelers Prop. Cas. Co. v. Stresscon Co. Stresscon, a subcontracting concrete company, entered into a settlement agreement – without providing notice to its...more

Supreme Court Limits ERISA Reimbursement Rights: Insurers Will Need to be Diligent

On January 20, 2016, the United States Supreme Court held that an ERISA plan could not satisfy its reimbursement rights from a participant’s general assets. ERISA plans’ reimbursement rights are now so limited that...more

Pulido v. AAA Insurance, Defense Verdict Obtained by Jones Skelton & Hochuli

Michael Halvorson and David Potts, attorneys at Jones, Skelton & Hochuli, obtained a defense verdict in favor of AAA Members Insurance Company in a two-week trial concerning a pedestrian-vehicle accident near Pinnacle High...more

Florida Supreme Court Holds that UM Insured is Entitled to Liability Determination and Full Extent of Damages Before Filing a Bad...

Petitioner Adrian Fridman (“Fridman”) was injured in an automobile accident involving an underinsured motorist. Fridman filed a claim with his uninsured/underinsured (UM) insurance carrier (Insurer) for the $50,000 limits of...more

Georgia Supreme Court Holds Pollution Exclusion Applicable to Lead Paint Injury

In its recent decision in Georgia Farm Bureau Mut. Ins. Co. v. Smith, 2016 Ga. LEXIS 245 (Ga. Mar. 21, 2016), the Supreme Court of Georgia had occasion to consider whether under Georgia law, the pollution exclusion applies to...more

Dempsey v. Bagley, 2016 ABQB 124 - Lessors of Vehicles Still Vulnerable Under Workers Compensation Act

There were two motor vehicle accidents in the summer of 2006. The plaintiffs and the defendants involved in the accidents were employees of Brinks Canada Limited (“Brinks”). The vehicles in question were owned by PHH...more

Massachusetts Court Holds Insured Contract Does Not Compel a Duty to Defend

In its recent decision in Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort, LLC v. Wiegand Sports, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34209 (D. Mass. Mar. 16, 2016), the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts had occasion to consider...more

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