Residential Real Estate Civil Procedure Insurance

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Indiana Court Dismisses Bad Faith Allegations and Praises Insurer for Timely Claims-Handling

A recent federal District Court decision from Indiana, Autumn Glen Homeowners Ass’n. v. Travelers Ind. Co. of America, 2015 WL 1256391, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33317 (S.D. Ind., Mar. 18, 2015) provides insight into both...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Week Ending March 20, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Probate/Quit Claim Deeds: trial court correctly ordered personal representative to issue deeds conveying properties to son and mother, subject to life estate held by son – Ciungu v. Bulea, Case...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Week Ending March 6 & 13, 2015

Real Property Update: Deed Restriction: genuine issue of material facts remains concerning whether original parties to deed with restrictions contemplated future unilateral amendments to restrictions that would bind...more

Insurance Payout Goes Up In Smoke: Sixth Circuit Finds Manufacturing Marijuana Changes Use Of A Residence.

In Nationwide Mut. Fire Ins. Co. v. McDermott, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3012 (6th Cir. Feb. 24, 2015), a homeowner’s claim for a total fire loss was denied based on the policy’s “change of use” endorsement. On January 13,...more

Eleventh Circuit defines “structural damage” under an insurance policy to mean more than simply “physical” damage

Although commonly used in insurance policies, the term “ structural damage ” is typically an undefined term, leaving it to insurers, insureds, and sometimes the courts to define. In Florida, federal district courts had come...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

Texas Claims Are Getting Nasti: The Insured’s Burdens

Texas courts have long taken the position that “[w]hen covered and excluded perils combine to cause an injury, the insured must present some evidence affording the jury a reasonable basis on which to allocate damages.”...more

Eleventh Circuit Holds Not All Damage Is “Structural Damage” For Purpose Of A Sinkhole Claim

In Hegel v. The First Liberty Insurance Corporation, 2015 U.S. App. Lexis 3024 (11th Cir. Feb. 27, 2015), the Eleventh Circuit reversed summary judgment in favor of the homeowners because the trial court applied an improper...more

Western District of Washington: Insured That Violated Duties of Notice and Cooperation Could Not Make Out Claim for Bad Faith...

Granite State Ins. Co. v. Integrity Structures, LLC, No. C14-5085BHS, 2015 WL 136006 (W.D. Wash. Jan. 9, 2015). The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington held that an insurer did not act in bad faith...more

The Pennsylvania Superior Court Continues to Muddle the Answer to the Question of When Faulty Workmanship is an “Occurrence” Under...

Pennsylvania courts continue to struggle with complex concepts underpinning when faulty workmanship can be an “occurrence” triggering coverage under Commercial General Liability (“CGL”) policies. In Kvaerner Metals Division...more

District Court Strikes Homeowners Policyholders’ Class Action Allegations

The United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio granted defendant State Auto’s motion to strike plaintiffs’ class allegations, holding that the complaint itself demonstrated that the proposed class was not...more

No Manifestation Destiny: The Seventh Circuit Declines to Set a Standard Trigger Rule for First-Party Property Policies

Property damage can be sudden and dramatic, but it can also be subtle and insidious, and that can make it hard to identify the moment when properly coverage is implicated. As a result, courts have recognized several...more

Lender-Placed Insurance Actions Continue to Simmer

Litigation and regulatory scrutiny surrounding lender-placed insurance (“LPI”) practices, initiated in large part on the heels of the mortgage crisis, continues to simmer. While the largest LPI class actions have settled,...more

Eastern District of Kentucky: Insurer’s Denial Of Claim Did Not Amount To Bad Faith Where Insureds Could Not Establish Malice or...

Cline v. Allstate Ins. Co., No. 6:13-CV-182-HAI, 2014 WL 7074973 (E.D. Ky. Dec. 15, 2014). After Denial of Claim for Loss from Fire on Basis of Exclusion for Criminal or Intentional Acts, Insurer wins Cross-Motions for...more

Property Insurance Law: 2014 Year in Review

Hurricane Sandy continued to generate a significant amount of litigation during 2014 which resulted in several important property insurance decisions. Most notably, as a result of Sandy and other events, the courts...more

Weathering Winter Storm Juno With Roof Collapse Coverage

For most of the Northeast, this winter was off to a slow start in terms of snowfall. That was, however, until winter storm Juno paralyzed much of the Eastern Corridor and resulted in eye-popping, 3-foot-plus snow totals in...more

California Insurance Law - 2014 Year in Review

Introduction - The California appellate courts issued an unusual number and variety of insurance-related opinions in 2014. The California Supreme Court issued an important and highly anticipated ruling on the scope of...more

Insurance Client Alert: Denial of Summary Judgment Does Not Automatically Establish Duty to Defend

In McMillin Companies v. American Safety Indemnity (No. D063586, filed 1/20/15), a California appeals court ruled that an insurer's loss of a summary judgment motion on the duty to defend does not necessarily establish that a...more

Florida’s Second District Reverses Summary Judgment for Carrier Based on Loss-Payment Provision of Policy and Violation of...

In Curtis v. Tower Hill Prime Ins. Co. 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 398 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2d Dist. Jan. 14, 2015), the Second District reversed a Pasco County trial court’s grant of two separate summary judgment motions in favor...more

Prompt Notice Requirement: 11th Circuit Rules that a Policyholder’s Late Notice of a Claim Results in a Strong Presumption of...

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently explained that under Florida law a policyholder who fails to provide prompt notice of a claim faces an uphill battle defeating the resulting rebuttable presumption of prejudice...more

It’s Not Personal: Ninth Circuit Denies Putative Class Representative’s Appeal as Moot

In Campion v. Old Republic Protection Company, Inc., No. 12-56784, (Dec. 31, 2014) the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a putative class representative’s appeal was moot because he had no personal stake in the case...more

State Supreme Court Rules on Scope of B&O Tax Mortgage Interest Deduction

In 1980, when extending the business and occupation (B&O) tax to financial institutions, the legislature provided a deduction for “amounts derived from interest received on investments or loans primarily secured by first...more

2014 Hail-Related Insurance Litigation Year In Review

The number of lawsuits arising from hail-damage claims to residential and commercial properties has increased dramatically over the past few years. Indeed, since 2012, hundreds of lawsuits alleging underpayment of...more

District of Colorado: Insureds Have No Obligation To Hire Public Adjusters To Recover Amounts Due Under A Policy

Norman v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., No. 13-CV-01643-PAB-CBS, 2014 WL 6478046 (D. Colo. Nov. 19, 2014). District of Colorado holds that insured has no duty to hire own adjuster in order to receive payment, and denies...more

Minnesota Holds “Comparable Material and Quality” Requires Wholesale Replacement Where Undamaged Siding Is Faded

Matching issues are frequently problematic when storms damage only portions of an insured structure’s exterior and it proves impossible to replace the damaged sections with material that is an exact match for the rest of the...more

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