Personal Injury Civil Procedure Insurance

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Duty to Defend Only Triggered Where Subject Activities Are Specified in the Policy - Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. v. Gum Tree...

Finding that the specific allegations made in a plaintiff’s civil petition filed against an insurance policy holder did not meet the specifications of the insured’s policy, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit...more

Texas Supreme Court weekly orders (3/15)

The three cases involve (1) whether a liability insurer must pay the plaintiffs who received an assignment from the insured after the insurer failed to defend, (2) whether the former owner of a chemical plant is liable for...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Upholds “Fairly Debatable” Standard for Establishing Insurer Bad Faith for Uninsured Motorist Coverage

In a pair of recent decisions addressing first-party claims for uninsured motorist coverage , Wadeer v. N.J. Mfrs. Ins. Co., A-48-12, 2015 N.J. Lexis 132 (N.J. Sup. Ct. Feb. 28, 2015) and Badiali v. N.J. Mfrs. Ins. Group,...more

Cancellation and Delay Waive Right to Later Rescind Ab Initio

In DuBeck v. Cal. Physicians' Service (No. B250129, filed 3/5/15), a California appeals court held that Blue Shield’s initial decision to cancel a healthcare policy for application misrepresentations constituted a waiver of...more

Court Finds Potential for Personal Umbrella Coverage of Sexual Assault Not Covered by Underlying Homeowners Policy

In Gonzalez v. Fire Insurance Exchange (No. H039368, filed 2/5/15), a California appeals court ruled that a personal umbrella policy's broader coverage gave rise to a duty to defend sexual molestation allegations that were...more

Western District of Washington: No Bad Faith Where Insurer Refuses to Provide a Defense Where Facts Confirmed Insured’s Actions...

Wargacki v. W. Nat’l Assurance Co., No. C13-5373RBL, 2015 WL 74111 (W.D. Wash. Jan. 6, 2015). The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington grants summary judgment to an insurer ruling that the insurer...more

Seventh Circuit Finds Attorney Fee Dispute Arbitrable

The Seventh Circuit recently held that a cost-sharing agreement (“CSA”) between Hennessy Industries Inc. (“Hennessy”) and National Union Fire Insurance Co. (“National Union”) required the parties to arbitrate a dispute over...more

Bank of Delmarva v. South Shore Ventures, LLC, Del. Super., C.A. No. S13C-05-008 THG (Oct. 21, 2014)

The Superior Court granted the Bank of Delmarva’s (“Bank”) motion for summary judgment as to each of Defendant John E. O’Brien’s (“Defendant”) counterclaims. In 2005, Defendant along with South Shore Ventures, LLC (“Shore”)...more

Texas Supreme Court Orders and Opinions (2/15)

Today, the Supreme Court of Texas issued opinions in two argued cases. The Court did not grant any new petitions or set any mandamus petitions for argument. ...more

High Court to clarify proportionate liability – an update

As previously reported,special leave has been granted in the appeal of Selig & Anor v Wealthsure Pty Ltd & Ors, which presents an opportunity for the High Court to clarify the law in relation to proportionate liability. The...more

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) determination – what amounts to a failure to take ‘reasonable precautions’?

The FOS has released its first edition of The Circular for 2015. Of notable interest was a key determination affirming that general policy exclusions for failing to take reasonable precautions do not apply to negligence....more

Eleventh Circuit: Summary Judgment For Insurer Improper Where Fact Question Remained About Whether Insurer Acted In Bad Faith By...

Geico Gen. Ins. Co. v. Gould, No. 14-10913, 2014 WL 7013971 (11th Cir. Dec. 15, 2014) (per curium). The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed a grant of summary judgment for an insurance company. It...more

Supreme Court of Missouri Reverses Grant of Summary Judgment for Primary Insurer on Insured’s and Excess Insurer’s Bad Faith...

Scottsdale Ins. Co. v. Addison Ins. Co., No. SC 93792 (Mo. Dec. 9, 2014). Supreme Court of Missouri rules in an en banc decision that neither an excess judgment nor a failure to pay policy limits are essential elements...more

If You Post It, Your Opponent Can Probably Discover It

In March we ran a post on how important videos, photographs, and statements on social media sites can be when investigating a property loss. A picture is literally worth a thousand words. Earlier this month, a Florida court...more

High Court to clarify proportionate liability

Many readers will be aware of the Full Federal Court decisions of Wealthsure Pty Ltd v Selig [2014] FCAFC 64 and ABN AMRO Bank NV v Bathurst Regional Council [2014] FCAFC 65, which are in conflict as to how proportionate...more

Indemnification by Insurance Precluded under Wyoming Anti-indemnity Statute in Oil & Gas Personal Injury Coverage Dispute

On December 19, 2014, the Federal District Court in Wyoming issued a decision in Lexington Insurance Company v. Precision Drilling Co., LP, et al. , D. Wyo., Case No. 12-cv-070-J, extending the reach of the anti-indemnity...more

LITIGATION ALERT: The Motor Carrier Act/MCS-90 Endorsement Duty to Defend When No Coverage Exists?

Under the Motor Carrier Act of 1980 ("the Act"), no motor carrier shall operate a motor vehicle unless the carrier has obtained minimum levels of financial responsibility through insurance or other forms for bodily injury or...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Formally Adopts “Gist of the Action” Doctrine

Pennsylvania’s “gist of the action” doctrine prohibits plaintiffs from pursuing tort claims for what are, in actuality, breach of contract claims. A variety of defendants, including those in the financial services industry,...more

Eastern District of Pennsylvania: Bad Faith Claim Rejected Where Insurer Requested Examination of Claimant, Made Settlement Offer...

Stanford v. National Grange Ins. Co., Civil Action No. 11-7144 (E.D. Pa. Nov. 3, 2014). Eastern District of Pennsylvania grants insurer’s motion for summary judgment on bad faith claim in dispute over payment of...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Rules Statutory Bad Faith Claims are Assignable

On December 15, 2014, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania held, in a 5-1 decision, that bad faith claims brought pursuant to 42 Pa. C.S. § 8371 may be assigned by an insured to an injured third party under Pennsylvania law. See...more

Assign Away: Pennsylvania Supreme Court Says Bad Faith Claims May be Assigned

On December 15, 2014, in the case of Allstate Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. Wolfe, No. 39 MAP 2014, slip op. at 1 (Pa. Dec. 15, 2014), the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that an insured may assign a statutory bad faith claim...more

Illinois Supreme Court Agrees to Decide Limits on Self-Insured Car Rental Company's Liability for Customers' Accidents

In the closing days of its November term, the Illinois Supreme Court agreed to decide an issue of considerable importance for Illinois’ car rental industry: can a self-insured car rental company be held liable without...more

Underinsured Motorist Insurance – Allowable Offsets to Limits

Christina Elliott v. Geico Indemnity Company - Court Of Appeal, Third Appellate District (November 19, 2014)- In California, Uninsured Motorist (“UM”) Coverage and Underinsured Motorist (“UIM”) Coverage are...more

New York Court of Appeals Holds Non-Cumulation Clauses Applicable to Lead Paint Claims

In its recent decision in Nesmith v Allstate Ins. Co., 2014 NY Slip Op 08217 (N.Y. Nov. 27, 2014), the New York Court of Appeals – New York’s highest court – had occasion to revisit the application of “non-cumulation” clauses...more

California Court Rejects Bad Faith Claim

In Graciano v. Mercury General Corporation, 2014 Cal. App. LEXIS 1028 (Cal. App. Oct. 17, 2014), the California Court of Appeal had occasion to consider whether an insurer may be held liable for bad faith for unreasonably...more

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