News & Analysis as of

Natural Disasters

Hold on to Your Hats: Another Active Hurricane Season Forecasted

by Zelle LLP on

Some wait for football season in the Fall while others anticipate baseball season in the Spring. Some sports fans are disappointed that basketball season just ended. But those in the insurance industry often anxiously...more

Is Your Company’s Hurricane Plan ready?

by Cozen O'Connor on

With the first tropical storm of the season bearing down on the Gulf Coast, it is a good time to dust off your HR Department’s Hurricane Plan and make sure it is up to date. If you don’t have one, it is an even better time to...more

Texas Legislature Votes to Restrict Policyholders’ Rights

by Reed Smith on

Texas lawmakers are now on the fast track to restrict policyholders’ rights when their insurance companies fail to pay property insurance claims arising out of weather events, such as storms involving heavy winds and hail....more

Insurance Takeaways From Texas’ New Hailstorm Bill

by Zelle LLP on

On Feb. 1, 2017, the Texas Department of Insurance published the results of its presentation to the Texas Legislature titled: “Interim Charges: The Cost of Weather-Related Property Claims and Related Litigation.” Notably, the...more

Gavel to Gavel: What to know about disaster relief statutes

by GableGotwals on

With Oklahoma’s storm season approaching, businesses should be aware of the Oklahoma Disaster Relief Materials Price Stabilization Act and the Emergency Price Stabilization Act. When Oklahoma’s governor or the president of...more

First Quarter Numbers for Property Insurers Look Bleak, But is it Too Early to Call it a Trend?

by Zelle LLP on

The insurance industry has been able, in the past few years, to avoid a string of major catastrophes like those in the early 2000’s. One might think that property insurers have gotten off easy. Appearances can be deceiving,...more

Medicaid’s Role in Public Emergencies and Health Crises

Editor’s Note: When it comes to natural disasters and public health crises, it is not surprising—in fact, it is expected—that federal agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) and the Centers for...more

Suit Limitation Period In Standard Flood Insurance Policy Is Not Tolled By Filing In State Court: Hurricane Irene Claim Dismissed...

The terms and conditions of the Standard Flood Insurance Policy (“SFIP”) are specified by regulations promulgated under the National Flood Insurance Act (“NFIA”). One of the terms in the SFIP provides that the insured cannot...more

When is a Flood a “Flood”: East Coast Edition

by Robins Kaplan LLP on

Last month, heavy rainstorms in California brought to the forefront the issue of what is a “flood” under California law, particularly in regard to rain and surface water. We noted a California court held “flood” in its plain...more

New Jersey Appellate Division Applies Anti-Concurrent Causation Clause to Bar Combined Flood/Sewer Backup Claim

Frequent readers of the blog will appreciate that disputes involving the application of anti-concurrent causation language in the context of claims for flood or water damage have appeared with some frequency in recent years....more

When it Rains it Floods: California Rainstorms and Flood Insurance

by Robins Kaplan LLP on

Until very recently, the scarcity of water and the decline in oil prices in California prompted the joke that oil was being used as fracking fluid to get water out of the ground. In the last week, however, so much rain has...more

Thunder and Lightning: Very, Very Frightening

by Zelle LLP on

The title for greatest reaper of catastrophe losses in the United States does not go to the hurricane, blizzard or ice storm but to the much more common thunderstorm. Thunderstorms don’t get cute names from The Weather...more

Sanctuary Jurisdiction Policy Could Impact Disaster Recovery

by Baker Donelson on

On January 25, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13768, "Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States." The full implications of this broadly written Executive Order are not yet known; however, it...more

FEMA Requires Compliance with National Standard Building Codes for Restoration of Facilities Funded Through Public Assistance...

by Baker Donelson on

Several recent disasters will test the practical implications of a policy update released by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) late last year. In issuing Recovery Policy FP-104-009-4, FEMA envisions that...more

Hawaii Bill Proposes Parametric Disaster Insurance Pilot Program

by Carlton Fields on

On January 23, 2017, Hawaii lawmakers introduced a bill to establish a pilot parametric disaster insurance program aimed at preventing potential liquidity gaps between federal assistance and total economic losses in the event...more

Global Hail—Australia

by Zelle LLP on

Storms that produce large hailstones (greater than 2cm in diameter) occur often in Australia, most commonly in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. Losses from severe convective storms (tornadoes, hail,...more

California Supreme Court Endorses the Insurance Commissioner’s Authority to Regulate Wayward Insurers

by Nossaman LLP on

On Monday, the California Supreme Court revived a 2011 insurance regulation designed to protect homeowners from underinsurance because of the insurance company’s use of potentially misleading estimates for home replacement...more

White House Releases Checklist to Improve Grid Resiliency

by Morgan Lewis on

The new plan builds on efforts to improve the response to attacks and disasters but recognizes that the needed investments may require regulatory changes to ensure cost recovery by utilities....more

Hurricane Sandy, Flood, and Sewer Backup: New Jersey Federal Court Confirms Anti-Concurrent Causation Bars Insured’s Claim

As we have written about before on this blog, the water damage caused by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012 gave rise to important questions concerning the applicability of so-called “anti-concurrent causation” clauses. Such was...more

Title Bout: Second Circuit Limits Parties’ Control Over Construction Of Policies

by Carlton Fields on

Like other contracts, insurance policies are divided into parts, and most of the parts appear under headings or captions. A separate contract term (known as a “titles clause” or a “headings clause”) sometimes specifies that...more

When It Rains, It Pours. When It Pours, It Floods. Is there Insurance Coverage for Your Resulting Losses?

The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season, which is coming to a close, has been quite active (translation: destructive and costly). So far, there have been fourteen named storms this season. Six of them were hurricanes, three of...more

OIG Pushing FEMA to Get Tougher on Procurement Compliance

by Baker Donelson on

The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently released their report "FEMA Can Do More to Improve Public Assistance Grantees' and Subgrantees' Compliance with Federal Procurement Rules." OIG...more

Washington, D.C. Update – October 2016

by Baker Donelson on

In a rush to leave Washington and head home to campaign for reelection, members of Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) avoiding a shutdown and extending federal government operations through December 9. In an effort...more

Florida Sinkhole Statute And Recovery Of Attorneys’ Fees Without Bad Faith: Florida Supreme Court Reverses The 5th DCA And...

In Johnson v. Omega Ins. Co., 2016 Fla. LEXIS 2148 (Sept. 29, 2016), the Florida Supreme Court determined that the 5th DCA misapplied and misinterpreted two statutes, the first providing a presumption of correctness to the...more

Congress Agrees to Spend $500 Million on Disaster Recovery Efforts

by Baker Donelson on

As part of the agreement over the CR, Congress agreed to spend $500 million to help Louisiana and other states recover from recent flooding. At least $400 million is expected to go to Louisiana, where August flooding killed...more

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