Court Compels Production Of Information Exchanged Between Insurer And Reinsurer As Relevant To Construction Of Policy

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In a declaratory relief action brought against the FDIC by the liability insurer for the directors and officers of a bank in receivership, the court resolved a discovery dispute that included a contested request for information exchanged between the insurer and its reinsurer. In compelling the production of the reinsurance information, the court adopted a prior case’s articulation of seven reasons why reinsurance information might be relevant to assist with the construction of policy language: to determine (1) how the insurer has interpreted the provisions in the current lawsuit; (2) whether the insurer’s interpretation has been consistent with the positions taken with insureds; (3) whether the insurer and reinsurer discussed whether the type of claims in dispute would be covered; (4) whether the insurer and reinsurer discussed the insureds’ expectations on the scope of coverage; (5) when the insurer received notice of claims; (6) if the insureds’ claims were untimely, whether the insurer claimed it was prejudiced as a result; and (7) whether the reinsurer was involved in the sales and marketing of the policies in dispute, and if so, what those efforts reflect in terms of the reasonable expectations of the insureds concerning the scope of coverage. Progressive Casualty Insurance Co. v. FDIC, Case No. 5:12-cv-04041 (USDC N.D. Iowa Mar. 10, 2014).

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