Policy Exclusions

News & Analysis as of

In Iowa, Rain is What Gene Kelly Sang In – Not Water From a Burst Drain Pipe

Earlier this year, an Iowa court recognized that rain becomes rainwater once it has fallen, and it held that policy language excluding loss caused by “rain” – without more – will not operate to bar coverage for water from a...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update

Easements: trial court erred in denying statutory easement or “way of necessity” where owners established all elements pursuant to section 704.01(2), Fla. Stat. – Messer v. Sanders, No. 1D13-3084 (Fla. 1st DCA July 9, 2014)...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

Insurance Recovery Law - July 2014 #2

U.S. Bank Wins Coverage Under Delaware Law For $55 Million Overdraft-Related Settlement - Why it matters: In a victory worth tens of millions of dollars, a Minnesota federal court ruled that U.S. Bank is...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

Leave it to Beaver: Arizona Court of Appeals Validates “Relative Definition” of Insured Which Precludes UIM Coverage

If the Beaver owned a classic 1959 Ford Fairlane, he would not have been insured for UIM benefits under the Cleaver family auto policy. In Beaver v. American Family Mutual Insurance Company, 234 Ariz. 584, 324 P.3d 870 (App....more

New York Court: Storm Surge is a Species of Excluded Flood

One of the most litigated issues in the Gulf States in the wake of Hurricane Katrina was whether flood exclusions bar coverage for loss by storm surge. The courts ultimately decided that the answer was yes....more

The Alabama Supreme Court Changes Its Mind on Coverage Under CGL Policy

Last September the Alabama Supreme Court issued an opinion addressing the applicability of the “own work” exclusion to claims against a contractor for defective construction. However, on March 28, 2014, the Alabama Supreme...more

Insurance Recovery Law - July 2014

Second Circuit: Insurer Must Defend Where Factual Allegations Create a Possibility of Coverage - Why it matters: In a recent pro-policyholder decision, the Second Circuit, applying New York law, reminded...more

Absolute Pollution Exclusions Are Absolute When There Has Been Pollution

Pollution exclusions first became routine in liability policies in the early 1970s. After a decade of often unsuccessful litigation trying to enforce those exclusions, insurers introduced a so called “absolute” pollution...more

When Is a Construction Defect a Mere Business Risk and Not Insurable?

In an unpublished appellate decision from the state of Washington, on May 5, 2014, the Washington Court of Appeals affirmed a summary judgment in favor of a CGL insurer, Western National Assurance, relieving it of any...more

Policyholders Must Be Vigilant for Construction Defect Exclusions, Including For Impaired Property to Combat Insurance Companies’...

Continuing the most recent trend in coverage litigation, insurance companies are increasingly engaging “Big Law” firms to develop legal arguments for narrower interpretation of their policies when troublesome claims threaten...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

Policyholder Observer

Encryption Flaw "Heartbleed" Creates Data Risk: How Insurance Can Stanch the Bleeding - In early April, news broke of an encryption flaw named “Heartbleed” that exposed companies to data breaches for over two and one...more

Tenth Circuit (Applying Colorado Law) Upholds Summary Judgment In Favor Of Insurer On Earth Movement And Water Damage Exclusions

Wagner v. Am. Family Mut. Ins. Co., No.: 13-1438, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 11526 (10th Cir. June 19, 2014) arose from a claim by a property owner under a homeowner’s insurance policy issued to her by American Family Mutual...more

State Farm’s Relentless Pursuit to Deny Coverage for TCPA Cases

As policyholder lawyers, one can usually count on a few basic mistakes that insurers will make. First, they wrongfully deny coverage and fail to defend. They abandon their insured who is then left to its own devices to...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

Supreme Court of Nevada Holds Indoor Air Quality Exclusion Ambiguous

In its recent decision in Century Surety Co. v. Casino West Hotel, 2014 Nev. LEXIS 50 (Nev. May 29, 2014), the Supreme Court of Nevada, deciding a certified question by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth...more

Texas Court Upholds Flood Exclusion

The Texas Court of Appeals recently examined the breadth of a flood exclusion contained in a homeowners’ insurance policy. In George v. State Farm Lloyds, No. 07-12-00465-cv, 2014 Tex. App. LEXIS 5356 (Tex. App. Ct. May 19,...more

Arizona Court Holds Insured Person Exclusions Applicable to Consolidated Securities Claims

In its recent decision in Amerco v. Nat’l Union Fire Ins. Co., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 69066 (D. Ariz. May 20, 2014), the United States District Court for the District of Arizona had occasion to consider the application of...more

New York Holds Water Which Backs Up Is Covered If It Originated On The Insured Premises

Last week, in Pichel v. Dryden Mutual Ins. Co., — N.Y.S. 2d —, 2014 WL 1923736 (May 15, 2014), an intermediate level appellate panel in New York brought the state into line with the interpretation of water backup adopted by a...more

Insurance Recovery Law - May 2014

New York Court Strictly Applies Draconian Policy Language, Holding Excess Coverage Forfeited By Settling With Underlying Insurers For Less Than Policy Limits - Why it matters: A New York appellate court has...more

Insurance recovery issues following Vietnam unrest

Recent turmoil and violence at manufacturing parks throughout Vietnam over the last few weeks is impacting both local and global manufacturers and the complex supply chains currently utilised by MNCs could mean relatively...more

Most Auto Accidents Are Excluded From Homeowners Coverage

In serious personal injury cases it is imperative to locate every possible source of insurance coverage. Often injury victims look to the at fault party's homeowners insurance even though the injuries arose from an automobile...more

Cyber Risks for the Boardroom Part 3: Top Questions Directors Should be Asking about D&O Coverage

Our series “Cyber Risks – Director Liability and Potential Gaps in D&O Coverage” continues – Part 3 of 5: Top Questions Directors Should Be Asking About D&O Coverage Directors never want to be in the unenviable...more

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