Professional Liability

News & Analysis as of

When Less Is More: The pitfalls of saying too much in professional contracts

Design and other professionals often incorporate their practices in an effort to avoid individual liability. They also add well-crafted limitations of liability and indemnification clauses in their form services contracts to...more

As Litigation Risk Increases, Private Equity Sponsors Should Re-Evaluate Their Professional Liability Insurance Programs

Private equity fund sponsors are facing increased litigation risk from regulators and private parties, including limited partners and stakeholders in portfolio companies.  As a result, private equity firms should re-examine...more

New York Court Holds Dishonest Acts Exclusion Inapplicable

In its recent decision in Great American E&S Ins. Co. v. Norman-Spencer McKernan, Inc., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 140481 (W.D.N.Y. Oct. 15, 2015), the United States District Court for the Western District of New York had occasion...more

A Shift in Liability for Credit Card Fraud

For too long, “swiping” a credit card has had at least one meaning too many. There was “swiping” as it pertains to running the magnetic strip of your credit card inside the groove of a small payment terminal to make an...more

Court of Appeal Shines Light on Collusive Settlement Agreements

In Diamond v. Reshko, (filed 8/20/2015, No. A139251) the California Court of Appeal, First District, held that a defendant was entitled to introduce evidence at trial reflecting amounts paid by co-defendants in settlement of...more

Limitations of liability—Scenario One: Waivers of Consequential Damages

This is the second post in the four-part series “Limitations of liability—The Elephant in the Room.” Waivers of consequential damages have become the industry standard, and these clauses are found in most industry...more

Chancery Court Provides Lessons on Conflicts of Interest in a Sales Process – Holds Only Financial Advisor Open to Liability

In an October 1st decision (In re Zale Corporation), the Delaware Chancery Court dismissed claims that Zale Corporation’s directors breached their fiduciary duties in connection with Zale’s agreement to merge with Signet. ...more

Health Facilities May Be Insuring Doctors Without Knowing It

A September 29 ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court effectively makes a health facility liable for the professional negligence of a medical staff member who doesn’t have malpractice insurance or who has insurance that...more

Federal court in Florida provides helpful case study in insurance “choice of law” tactics

The Southern District of Florida recently issued an opinion that addresses some rarely discussed nuances of insurance choice of law disputes. Sun Capital Partners, Inc. v. Twin City Fire Ins. Co., No. 12-CV-81397, 2015 WL...more

Accidentally On Purpose: Washington Court Finds Coverage For Contempt Of Court Based On “Misunderstanding”

Professional liability policies cover claims based on the insured’s alleged negligent acts, errors or omissions, and not claims for “sanctions or penalties” for “willful” professional misconduct. But the insurer’s duty to...more

Gatekeeper Liability of Inside Asset Management Attorneys "Appearing" Before the SEC

This article addresses the liability of inside attorneys at asset management companies— mutual fund sponsors, investment advisers, broker-dealers, life insurance companies—as gatekeepers under rules of the US Securities and...more

Corporate Insurance Trends 2015

Over the last 12 months, the insurance industry has seen speculation with respect to litigation funding regulation, resolutions of large class actions and consolidation in the form of acquisitions in the industry. There has...more

Two Key Insurance Considerations For Startups

Startups have numerous and different insurance needs and will face many challenges as new businesses, but by considering whether general liability and key person insurance are appropriate products they will likely be better...more

Playing With Fire: No Liability Coverage For Tax Preparers Who Took Deductions for Illegal Tax Shelters

“Gimme Shelter” is one of the greatest of a lot of great Rolling Stones songs (made greater by Merry Clayton’s gut-wrenching contribution). And, of course, “Gimme Shelter” is a cliché often trotted out in discussions of tax...more

Summary of California Appellate Decisions -August 2015

Insurance; Duty To Defend; Insurance Coverage; Intentional Acts; Sexual Misconduct - Gonzalez v. Fire Insurance Exchange (2015) 234 Cal.App.4th 1220, 184 Cal.Rptr.3d 394 (WL 960927) - Facts: This is an...more

EMV Liability Shift Update – What Liability Actually Shifts?

With the October 1, 2015 liability shift deadline looming, merchants who have not yet made the change continue to evaluate the cost of accepting EMV cards versus the liability that will shift from the issuer to the merchant...more

OFAC Announces Settlement Agreement with Insurance Company

On August 6, OFAC announced a $271,815 settlement with a New York-based insurance company with an overall focus on marine insurance and related lines of business, professional liability insurance, and commercial umbrella and...more

Insurers Take Notice: Don’t Become a Casualty of Trade Sanctions Violations!

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced that Navigators Insurance Company, which is headquartered in New York and specializes in marine insurance and related lines of business,...more

Third Circuit Finds Insured v. Insured Exclusion Precludes Recovery of Defense Costs

Many corporate executives may be under the impression that the defense costs they incur when sued for actions taken in their role as officers of the company would be covered by a “Management Protection” insurance policy. The...more

ABA Resolution 105 on Punitive Damages Is Dead for Now

On the eve of the ABA's Annual Meeting next week, the ABA's Standing Committee on Medical Professional Liability announced its withdrawal of proposed Resolution 105 from consideration by the ABA House of Delegates. The...more

The Perils of an Attorney Joining a Corporate Board

From time to time, attorneys are asked to serve as corporate directors or officers. Watch out—there may be some serious perils involved for the attorney and his or her law firm....more

“The Donald” Trumps Condo Buyers by Avoiding Trade-mark Licensor Liability

United States presidential candidate Donald Trump avoided liability for alleged misrepresentations of the attributes of purchased hotel condominium units by a developer that is licensed by one of Mr. Trump’s corporate...more

Perspectives on Insurance Recovery

Welcome to the latest edition of Pillsbury’s Perspectives on Insurance Recovery. As this 2015 edition of Perspectives demonstrates, our team is working on the most challenging issues—from cyber-insurance and complex claims...more

What Message Is Being Sent to CCOs By SEC Commissioners?

The role of the chief compliance officer is the talk of the Securities and Exchange Commission these days – or at least some of its Commissioners. Those who are speaking for the record agree that the role of the CCO is...more

Update on Opposition to ABA Hijinks

Last month, we described the proposal by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Medical Professional Liability concerning legislation on “defective medical products” and punitive damages for “patient harm...more

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