Liability Insurance

News & Analysis as of

Fifth Circuit Holding Breathes Life Back Into the Contractual Liability Exclusion

Liability insurance policies typically exclude coverage for obligations arising out of the insured’s “assumption of liability in a contract or agreement.” Earlier this year, the Texas Supreme Court took a narrow view of this...more

West Virginia High Court Examines Number Of Occurrences Under Liability Insurance Policy

This year, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia issued an important decision concerning whether a carbon monoxide leak is a single or multiple occurrence under a liability insurance policy. Kosnoski, et al. v....more

Federal Judge Concludes Restitution May Be Covered Under Commonly Used Professional Liability Policy Language

A federal judge in Minnesota recently held that “restitution” paid to settle a class action lawsuit was covered under the terms of a professional liability policy. The court in U.S. Bank National Ass’n et al. v. Indian Harbor...more

U.S. Bank v. Indian Harbor: Another Blow to the Restitution/Disgorgement Defense

In recent years, purchasers of D&O and professional liability insurance have been stunned to learn that their carriers have denied coverage for a wide range of claims on the theory that their policies do not cover loss that...more

Third Circuit Holds Insurer’s Interpretation of Employer’s Liability Exclusion is Fairly Debatable

A recent 3rd Circuit decision, ArcelorMittal Plate, LLC v. Joulé Technical Services, Inc., 558 Fed.Appx. 205 (3d Cir. 2014) reiterates that under New Jersey law, an insurer does not act in bad faith when denying a claim that...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Notes Limited Reach of Multiple Trigger Rule in Insolvency Case

On July 21, 2014, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court held, as a matter of first impression, that the Continuance of Coverage Provision of the Pennsylvania insurance insolvency statute, 40 P.S. § 221.21, precludes coverage for all...more

Joint Employment Finding Leads to Unexpected $3 Million Liability in Hospital Malpractice Case

When Washington Hospital obtained an insurance policy in 2003 to cover medical claims arising from acts by its employees, its insurer probably did not consider whether hospital employees included workers supplied by a...more

Washington Insurance Law 2014 Mid-Year Update

During the first six months of 2014, Washington judges issued several notable insurance-related decisions. Some of those decisions were favorable to insurers and could benefit insurers in future insurance claims and lawsuits...more

D&O Coverage: The Devil Is In the Details

A five-paragraph opinion by the New York Appellate Division suggests the potentially devastating consequences of ignoring the fine print of Directors & Officers Liability insurance policies. In Associated Community Bancorp.,...more

Risk Planning and Board Liability

Board members are in the hot seat, or to put it another way – they are in a hot kitchen. The question is whether they can stand the heat of the hot kitchen....more

Eleventh Circuit Maps a Route Around Four Corners

Florida adheres to the "four corners rule," under which a liability insurer’s duty to defend an insured is determined solely from the allegations of the underlying complaint. In Composite Structures, Inc. v. The Continental...more

Principal Architects on Residential Projects Liable for Construction Defects Outside Their Control; Developers and Owners May Pay...

On July 3, 2014, the California Supreme Court decided the much watched case Beacon Residential Community Assoc. v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP. The court held that the “principal architect” “owes a duty of care to future...more

Individual Liability: What’s Behind The Headlines?

It’s been open season on financial institutions since the 2008-2009 financial crisis (“Financial Crisis”). State and federal prosecutors and regulators are competing with each other for press coverage of their latest consent...more

Who pays when the authorities come calling? Syracuse Univ. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, P.A.

With the seemingly endless stream of federal and state investigations implicating institutions of higher education, a recent New York decision offers a glimmer of hope to those schools that find themselves in the cross-hairs....more

Data Breach Liability Exclusion – It’s Not Your Father’s CGL

No business is immune to data breach. Digital data in particular can be lost in innumerable ways, causing serious business interruptions and consumer injuries. After falling victim to a hack, virus, or cyber theft, companies...more

New Jersey Court Allows Rescission of Policy and Awards Damages to Insurer

In its recent decision in Colony Ins. Co. v. Kwasnik, Kanowitz & Assocs., P.C., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 87659 (D.N.J. June 27, 2014), the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey had occasion to consider the...more

Court Construes Disputed Insurance Policy Language And Requires Reinsurer To Follow The Settlements

The case involved two facultative reinsurance contracts, each of which covered excess liability for similar umbrella liability insurance policies, and each of which contained a “follow the settlements” provision. After the...more

First Circuit Addresses Definition of “You” in Liability Policy

In its recent decision in Metropolitan Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. McCarthy, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 10622 (1st Cir. June 5, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, applying Maine law, had occasion to...more

Construction Defect Disputes and the Abandoned Policyholder: Getting the Carrier to the Table

There is much that can go wrong in any large construction project: improper installations, defective products, errors and omissions made by designers, unexpected site conditions—the list is long. Insurance coverage or a...more

Washington’s Insurance Fair Conduct Act Does Not Apply to Liability Insurance Claims

On May 16, 2014, Judge Marsha Pechman of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington dismissed an insured’s cause of action against his liability insurer under Washington State’s Insurance Fair Conduct Act...more

Insurance Recovery Law - June 2014

Lab’s “Body Bag” Presentations Triggered Coverage For Defamation Claims: Why it matters - We’ve all sat through some pretty boring PowerPoint presentations. But the lesson from a recent decision: it might be a...more

Indemnification Agreements and Insured Contracts: Why Your Business or Insurer Might Owe a Defense and Indemnity

The purpose of this article is to address potential issues and concerns that may arise between General Contractors (“GC”), Subcontractors (the “Sub”) and their insurers when claims by outside parties (also known as...more

Individual Liability in CFPB Enforcement Proceedings

To date, the CFPB has brought 12 cases—out of more than three dozen total CFPB enforcement cases—in which it named individuals as defendants or respondents liable for violations of consumer protection statutes. Below, we...more

Children’s Summer Camps and Liability Waivers

The school year is swiftly coming to an end. If you are like many parents, you are scrambling to find entertaining, enriching activities for your children during the long summer months. Most children’s summer camps require...more

Mainebiz Real Estate Insider – Protecting the Penny Wise in a Lease

Some penny wise clients resist advice to get real estate out of their own individual names, opening themselves to unnecessary risk. Fortunate clients, who have not met the “trial bar” up close and personal, sometimes still...more

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