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If You Think Your Family Business’s Service Contracts Limit Your Liability In All Situations, Think Again!

Family-owned businesses in the services industry in Washington (and beyond) should be paying attention to a recent Washington Supreme Court case addressing the “Independent Duty Doctrine” (also referred to as the “economic...more

Insurance Recovery Law

Insurer Should Have Considered Extrinsic Facts When Determining Whether A Potential for Coverage Existed, Ninth Circuit Concludes - Why it matters: In a fascinating – albeit unpublished – decision from the Ninth...more

Builders Beware! You Cannot Hide Behind SB 800!

In Burch v Superior Court (Premier Homes et al.) 2014 DJDAR 1991 (decided February 19, 2014) plaintiff Burch, a Pacific Palisades homeowner, sued defendants Premier Homes, the developer, and Custom Home Builders, the general...more

Washington Supreme Court Permits $1.5M Damages Claim to Proceed against Engineering Firm under “Independent Duty Doctrine”

In a recent decision decided on a narrow 5-to-4 vote, the Washington Supreme Court declined to bar a couple’s negligence claims against an engineering firm based on a contractual limitation of liability, permitting the couple...more

The Texas Supreme Court Issues a Liability-Coverage Decision Favorable to the Construction Industry

On January 17, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court resolved a long-debated controversy as to the scope of a contractual liability insurance exclusion in Ewing Construction Co. v. Amerisure Insurance Co. A contractual liability...more

Contractual Attorney Fee Provisions: Words Matter

This blog entry provides an analytical metric for double-checking assumptions about application of Civil Code section 1717 and contractual attorney fee awards. As the case law demonstrates, it is easy to misapprehend how and...more

Kentucky Court Holds Insurer Established Diversity Jurisdiction

In its recent decision in Capitol Specialty Ins. Corp. v. IKO, Inc., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 167933 (E.D. Ky. Nov. 26, 2013), the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky had occasion to consider...more

Reasoning Behind Punitive Damages Calculations Provided By California Appellate Court

Royal Oakes was quoted extensively in an Oct. 7, 2013, Claims Journal article, California Court Of Appeals Decision Provides Reasoning Behind Punitive Damages Calculations, about a significant insurance case where $19 million...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Summary of Nevada Law on the Economic Loss Doctrine in the Context of Commercial Construction...

The Nevada Supreme Court has addressed the economic loss doctrine in the context of commercial construction disputes in a number of cases over the past several years. Nevada’s general rule, as detailed below, is that the...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Application of the Economic Loss Rule in Arizona Since Flagstaff Affordable Housing Ltd. v....

In a recent ruling, the Arizona Supreme Court clarified that the economic loss rule does not apply to non-contracting parties. See Sullivan v. Pulte Home Corporation, 667 Ariz. Adv. Rep. 36 (Ariz. 2013). This ruling both...more

Under Construction - September 2013: California’s Economic Loss Doctrine – Limits on Tort Recovery

In California, the economic loss rule addresses the distinction between suits in contract and tort. A contract claim can typically be pursued to recover all damages proximately caused by breach of contract, unless expressly...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Utah’s Economic Loss Rule

In Utah, a plaintiff must generally in be in privity with the “original contractor, architect, engineer or real estate developer” to bring an “action for defective design or construction.” Utah Code Ann. §78 B-4-513(4). This...more

Under Construction - September 2013: New Mexico’s Economic Loss Rule—It Exists, but Its Limits are To Be Determined

In Utah International, Inc. v. Caterpillar Tractor Co., 108 N.M. 539, 775 P.2d 741 (Ct. App. 1989), the New Mexico Court of Appeals adopted, for the first time, the economic loss rule in New Mexico. The defendant designed,...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Economic Loss in Colorado

The economic loss doctrine generally holds parties to the benefits, burdens and obligations set out in their contracts and bars tort claims such as negligence, misrepresentation and theft for purely economic loss when a...more

Fifth Circuit Revives Negligence Claims for Purely Economic Losses in Connection with Heartland Payment Systems Cyber-Attack...

On September 3, 2013, in Lone Star Nat'l Bank N.A. v. Heartland Payment Sys., Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that "the economic loss doctrine under New Jersey law does not preclude the Issuer...more

Construction Defect Litigation: Right to Repair Act (SB 800) Does Not Eliminate Common Law Remedies for Actual Damage to...

California’s Right to Repair Act (also known as SB 800) provides court remedies for a homeowner when construction defects diminish the economic value of a home, even though no personal injuries or actual property damage have...more

Policy Observer - July 2013

Getting Over the Bar: Second Circuit Requires Actual Payment of Underlying Limits In Order to Trigger Excess D&O Policies - In June, the Second Circuit held that two Federal Insurance Company ("FIC") excess D&O...more

Florida High Court to Clarify Apportionment of Joint Proposals for Settlement

On May 3, 2013, the Florida Supreme Court accepted for review two cases involving the apportionment of joint proposals for settlement: Arnold v. Audiffred,98 So. 3d 746 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012) (Fla. Sup. Ct. Case No.: SC12-2377)...more

Williston v Hamilton (Police Service), 2013 ONCA 296

An insurer who refuses to participate in a mediation requested by a plaintiff in respect of a motor vehicle accident claim continues to risk increased exposure to costs. The Ontario Court of Appeal recently repeated that...more

Injured Party Free to Pursue Medical Payments under Tortfeasor’s Policy After Settlement of Liability Claim

In a case of first impression, Barnes v. Western Heritage Ins. Co., ___ Cal.App.4th ___, 2013 Cal.App.LEXIS 480 (June 20, 2013), the California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, held the collateral source rules allow...more

Duty to Defend

An interesting decision was released by Ontario Superior Court Justice B. Glass on May 31, 2013 relating to an insurer’s duty to defend....more

Rogers Towers: First Thoughts on Recent Changes to Florida’s Economic Loss Rule

The Supreme Court of Florida recently blurred the lines between contract and tort law in a case involving breach of contract and negligence claims between an insured and its insurance broker. The Court used this vehicle to...more

Florida’s Supreme Court Limits The Economic Loss Rule

The Florida Supreme Court recently limited the application of the economic loss rule to products liability cases....more

Rogers Towers: Economic Loss Rule Takes a Step Back

On March 7, 2013, the Supreme Court of Florida filed its opinion in Tiara Condominium Assoc., Inc. v. Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. With this case, the Court took the final step of receding from the application of the...more

Seventh Circuit Permits Parol Evidence to Prove Fraud in the Inducement Despite Lack of Fraud in Integration Clause

In this week's post, we take a look at the recent Seventh Circuit case Judson Atkinson Candies, Inc. v. Kenray Associates, Inc. that held that parol evidence could be used to prove fraud in the inducement of a contract – a...more

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