Property Damage

News & Analysis as of

Texas Claims Are Getting Nasti: The Insured’s Burdens

Texas courts have long taken the position that “[w]hen covered and excluded perils combine to cause an injury, the insured must present some evidence affording the jury a reasonable basis on which to allocate damages.”...more

Eleventh Circuit Holds Not All Damage Is “Structural Damage” For Purpose Of A Sinkhole Claim

In Hegel v. The First Liberty Insurance Corporation, 2015 U.S. App. Lexis 3024 (11th Cir. Feb. 27, 2015), the Eleventh Circuit reversed summary judgment in favor of the homeowners because the trial court applied an improper...more

The Latest on Major Defense Verdicts in Arizona

What’s the latest news on Arizona’s civil defense verdicts? Here are some interesting defense verdicts from 2014: - Steak Out Restaurant & Saloon, L.L.C. et al. v. Old Lobos T&T, L.L.C. et al. Steak Out Restaurant...more

Sixth Circuit: Growing Marijuana is Not the Same as Buying a Houseplant or Entertaining Visitors

Half of the states in this country have now legalized marijuana for medical use, and that has led to a number of small-scale growing operations in policyholders’ homes.  While not nearly as dangerous as cooking meth on the...more

Florida Court Holds Arson is a Type of Excluded Vandalism and Malicious Mischief

Earlier this month a unanimous Florida appellate court joined a number of other states that have held that an all-risk policy exclusion for vandalism and malicious mischief operates to bar coverage for an arson loss. ...more

Land Subsidence Damage Caused by Groundwater Withdrawals in Arizona: Who Pays?

Land subsidence is a problem that affects many areas of the world, with well-publicized case studies in Mexico City, Tokyo, and certain areas within California and Arizona. ...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Week Ending February 20, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Sinkhole/Appraisal: reversing non-final order compelling appraisal of sinkhole claim because one is not appropriate under section 631.54(3)(c), Florida Statutes – Fla. Ins. Guar. Ass’n, Inc. v....more

Water District Not Liable In Inverse Condemnation When Water Pipe Breaks and Damages Property

California’s infrastructure is aging. There have been numerous reports of water line breaks and gas line leaks, and public agencies have been moving quickly to upgrade their utilities to minimize these risks and satisfy...more

Insurance Recovery Law - February 2015

California Court Adopts Broad Interpretation of “Occurrence,” Finds Coverage - Why it matters: In a victory for policyholders—and a continuation of the trend of courts adopting a broad reading of the term “occurrence”...more

Seventh Circuit Rejects Bright-Line Trigger Of Coverage Approach In First-Party Property Disputes

In Strauss v. Chubb Indem. Ins. Co., 771 F.3d 1026, 1030 (7th Cir. Wis. 2014), the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals applying Wisconsin law set forth an analysis for determining trigger of coverage in first-party property...more

Part 36 Offer Taken Into Account On Costs Even Though Beaten At Trial

In Sugar Hut Group Ltd & ors v AJ Insurance [2014] EWHC 3775 (Comm) Eder J applied the court's general discretion to decide on the appropriate costs payable to a successful claimant. CPR Part 44 was applied to take into...more

Missouri Federal Court Cuts Claims in Pipeline Property Damage Action

Underscoring the need for plaintiffs to show concrete proof of harm in suits alleging property damage, a federal district court dismissed a suit alleging that an oil pipeline contaminated farmland in Missouri. See Henke v....more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Holds First Manifestation Coverage Trigger Applies to Property Damage Case

In Penn Nat’l Mut’l Ins. Co. v. St. John, 2014 Pa LEXIS 3313 (Pa Dec. 15, 2014), the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania held that coverage was triggered under a commercial general liability (“CGL”) policy “when property damage...more

Don’t Mess With Texas Adjusters In Hail Damage Claims

Texas hail claim policyholder lawyers, like many plaintiffs’ lawyers, clearly prefer to be in state court rather than federal court. To accomplish this and prevent the defendant insurer from properly removing the lawsuit to...more

No Manifestation Destiny: The Seventh Circuit Declines to Set a Standard Trigger Rule for First-Party Property Policies

Property damage can be sudden and dramatic, but it can also be subtle and insidious, and that can make it hard to identify the moment when properly coverage is implicated. As a result, courts have recognized several...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Rules No Time Bar for Spill Act Contribution Claims

In a unanimous decision on January 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of New Jersey, in Morristown Associates v. Grant Oil Co., overturned two lower-court decisions and held that the six-year statute of limitations for damage to...more

Client Alert: Michigan Insurance Company Not Subject to Personal Jurisdiction in California for Losses Suffered in Arkansas

In Greenwell v. Auto-Owners Ins. Co. (No. C074546, Filed 1/27/2015) (“Greenwell”), the California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, held a California resident could not establish specific personal jurisdiction over...more

Property Insurance Law: 2014 Year in Review

Hurricane Sandy continued to generate a significant amount of litigation during 2014 which resulted in several important property insurance decisions. Most notably, as a result of Sandy and other events, the courts...more

(UK) When Is An Emergency Not An Emergency

It is the time of year when the Great British weather batters buildings up and down the country causing signs to fall off some and roofs to cave in! Beware, though, if you are the Landlord or manager of a mixed use building –...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Denies Appeal In Coverage Dispute; Superior Court Decision Recognizing a Duty to Defend Where Tort...

In a per curiam decision without a published opinion, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh’s (“National”) appeal from a Superior Court decision holding that National had a...more

Insurance Coverage for Businesses Affected by Winter Storm Juno

As the northeastern United States digs out from Winter Storm Juno, it is time for businesses and property owners to assess any damage suffered from the storm and analyze their property insurance policies in order to properly...more

Late Notice Held to Bar a $6,000,000 Hurricane Wilma Claim in Florida

In The Yacht Club on the Intracoastal Condo. Ass’n. v. Lexington Ins. Co., – Fed.Appx. –, 2015 WL 106862, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 293 (11h Cir., Jan. 8, 2015), a unanimous panel of the Eleventh Circuit recently held that a...more

Weathering Winter Storm Juno With Roof Collapse Coverage

For most of the Northeast, this winter was off to a slow start in terms of snowfall. That was, however, until winter storm Juno paralyzed much of the Eastern Corridor and resulted in eye-popping, 3-foot-plus snow totals in...more

Wisconsin Supreme Court's misapplication of the pollution exclusion and disregard for policyholders' business and purpose in...

Last week, the Wisconsin Supreme Court issued two opinions in which it held that pollution exclusions barred coverage for third-party claims resulting from alleged contamination of water due to the seepage of cow manure and...more

Insurance Client Alert: Mere Mailing of Policy and Renewals Into California is Not Sufficient Basis for Jurisdiction Over Bad...

In Greenwell v. Auto-Owners Ins. Co. (No. C074546, filed 1/27/15), a California appeals court held that the use of a mailing address to send policies and renewals into California did not support jurisdiction for a California...more

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