Property Damage

News & Analysis as of

Regional Steel: the continuing effort to avoid the cost of correcting the insured’s work

Casualty insurers normally do not expect to pay the cost of their insureds simply doing a good job. Insurers typically view their contracts as assuming the risk of delineated consequences – damages – if the insured’s work...more

Oklahoma Supreme Court Reconciles Sewer Backup Exclusion With Accidental Discharge Coverage Grant

In May, we reported that a New York court had found that a policy containing both an exclusion for water that backs up through sewers and drains and a coverage grant for accidental discharge or overflow from a plumbing system...more

Florida’s Second District Holds that Once Coverage is Established a Dispute over the Scope of Necessary Repairs Falls Squarely...

In Cincinnati Ins. Co. v. Cannon Ranch Partners, Inc., 2014 Fla. App. LEXIS 17033 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2d Dist. Oct. 17, 2014), the Second District reversed a Hillsborough trial court’s denial of Cincinnati Insurance...more

The Construction Advantage – Issue 10

Wyoming Supreme Court Concludes Contractor to Pay For Damages In Excess of Original Project Cost - An opinion released in a mid-August from the Wyoming Supreme Court concluded that repair damages were appropriate in a...more

Pennsylvania Court: Inaction When Damage is Known to Be Likely is Enough to Render the Loss Non-Fortuitous

On September 19th, a federal court in Pennsylvania held that a wall collapse was not fortuitous because the insureds knew that the wall was unstable and likely to fall and yet took no steps to correct the problem. ...more

No CGL Coverage for Faulty Workmanship Under Pennsylvania Law

In State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. v. McDermott, 2014 WL 5285335 (E.D. Pa. Oct. 15, 2014), a federal court recently held that an insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its insured against an underlying construction defect...more

Testing Texas CGL Coverage For 3rd Party Products

On Sept. 19, the Fifth Circuit certified four questions to the Texas Supreme Court regarding coverage under a commercial general liability policy in U.S. Metals Incorporated v. Liberty Mutual Group Incorporated, No. 13-20433,...more

U.S. District Court of Hawaii Holds That Claims Arising From Contractors Failure To Provide Metal Framing and Installation of...

In State Farm Fire & Cas. Co. v. RK Wooten, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 146196 (D. Haw. Oct. 14, 2014), the U.S. District Court of Hawaii recently determined that State Farm Fire & Casualty Insurance Company (“State Farm”) had no...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Declines To Review Pro-Policyholder Decision; Contrary Arguments Possible

For years, product manufacturers relied on commercial general liability policies to defend and indemnify them for product liability claims. Although these policies may exclude coverage for pure economic loss or for damage to...more

Florida Court: Your Own Attorney is Simply Not a “Disinterested” Appraiser

As noted yesterday, last month saw an intermediate level appellate panel in Florida address whether the attorney for the policyholder could serve as that party’s appraiser. It was a case of first impression in the Sunshine...more

Construction Case Law Update - October 2014 #2

Disputes over a mediation agreement’s validity must be resolved prior to a court ruling on discovery requests regarding matters potentially settled by the agreement. A dispute arose after Jilco, Inc. (“Jilco”) subleased a...more

NJ Supreme Court to Rule on Application of General Six-year Statute of Limitations to Spill Act Claims

The Supreme Court of New Jersey recently heard arguments on whether private claims for contribution brought under the New Jersey Spill Compensation and Control Act, N.J.S.A. 58:10-23.11 et seq. (Spill Act) are subject to a...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending October 10 & October 17, 2014

REAL PROPERTY CASES - - Sinkhole Loss/Statute of Limitations: homeowners’ lawsuit was barred by the one-year statute of limitations, even though lawsuit was filed promptly after FIGA processed the claim and made a...more

Texas Supreme Court Accepts a Concurrent Cause and Ordinance or Law Matter Involving Hurricane Ike

On October 3rd, the Texas Supreme Court granted a policyholder’s petition for review in a Hurricane Ike matter that potentially gives Texas’ highest court an opportunity to address several important insurance issues. They...more

Understanding and Avoiding Situations of Vicarious Liability

How many times have you loaned your automobile to a friend or family member? Even if you trust the person you are lending your car to, incidents can occur that can put you at risk for legal liability. Many automobile...more

Tennessee Legislature Passes Legislation Changing Requirements for Coverage of Sinkhole Losses

The Tennessee Legislature recently reformed the law of sinkhole coverage and sinkhole losses in the State of Tennessee with legislation which became effective July 1, 2014. Under the prior Tennessee law, every insurer...more

Texas Supreme Court Orders 10/14 (Six Petitions Granted)

Because there are no opinions and no grants in the Supreme Court's order list this morning, this is a good opportunity for me to do the promised post on the petitions granted in the October 3, 2014 order list. ...more

Texas Supreme Court Declines to Address Recovery for Stigma Damages in the Absence of a Permanent Physical Injury to Property

In a closely watched case, the Texas Supreme Court recently declined to address the issue of a right to recover damages for “stigma” in the absence of a permanent physical injury to property. (Houston Unlimited, Inc. v. Mel...more

New California Case Illustrates Peril of Full Credit Bid

In a new California case, a lender that made a full credit bid at a foreclosure sale lost its right as mortgagee under a lender’s insurance policy for damage to the property that occurred prior to foreclosure. This was so...more

Insurer’s Liability for Breach of Contract Is Not a Condition Precedent to Insured’s Bad Faith Claim

A Florida appeals court recently held in Cammarata v. State Farm Florida Insurance Co. that an insured is not required to show that its insurer breached the insurance policy before it can bring a claim for bad faith. Although...more

NE Supreme Court Issues Insurer-Friendly Decision on the Applicability of the Pollution Exclusion

In interpreting the scope of the pollution exclusion, one question seems to appear in case after case — what exactly does the pollution exclusion exclude? In State Farm Fire & Casualty Company v. Dantzler, 289 Neb. 1 (2014),...more

Property Policy’s Pollution Exclusion Not Subject to Proximate Cause Analysis

An insured’s argument to broadly apply an exception to a pollution exclusion was recently rejected by the British Columbia Supreme Court in Whitworth Holdings Ltd. v. AXA Pacific Insurance Co., 2014 CarswellBC 2648, 2014 BCSC...more

Florida’s Fifth District Holds Method of Repair is within the Scope of Appraisal and a Party’s Attorney may not Serve as a...

In Florida Insurance Guaranty Assoc., v. Branco, 39 Fla. L. Weekly D2020a (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 5th Dist. Sept. 19, 2014), the Fifth District affirmed in part and reversed in part a Hernando County trial court’s order...more

Alabama Supreme Court Clarifies (And Criticizes) Its Bad Faith Jurisprudence

In an opinion released for publication on August 14th, 2014, one year after issuance, the Alabama Supreme Court unanimously held that the state has but one tort of bad faith, albeit with two separate methods of proof, and...more

Bad Faith Sentinel - September 2014

In This Issue: - Southern District of New York: It is Unlawful for an Insurer to Withhold Payment When Some Portion on an Insured’s Entitlement is Undisputed - Eastern District of Pennsylvania: State Farm...more

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