LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
CGL Policy’s “Employment-Related Practices Exclusion” Held to Preclude Coverage for Lawsuit Involving Claims of Sexual Harassment and False Imprisonment

John Davler, Inc. v. Arch Ins. Co. , 229 Cal. App. 4th 1025 (2014), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ] In John Davler , the California Court of Appeal held that a CGL Policy’s exclusion for employment-related practices barred coverage for a sexual harassment lawsuit that...

Siblings Who Hate Each Other and Insurance Coverage

Tapas: Small Dishes of Insurance Coverage News & Notes In Peerless Indem. Ins. Co. v. Moshe & Stimson LLP, 2014 Ind. App. LEXIS 642 (Ind. Ct. App. Dec. 30, 2014), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the court held that no coverage was owed to a law partner, under a...

The Ninth Circuit Finds Carrier Had Duty to Defend Based on Potential that Erosion to Land Could Have Occurred During its Policy Period

St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co. v. Vadnais Corp. , 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 13084 (9th Cir. July 10, 2014), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ] In St. Paul , the Ninth Circuit reversed the ruling by the Eastern District of California that an exclusion for work performed by the...

The 10 Most Significant Liability Coverage Cases – Of All Time

I have spent fourteen years coming up with a list of the ten most significant liability coverage cases of that year. In all that time it never occurred to me, until now, to put together a list of the ten most significant coverage cases of all-time. These would be the cases, more than any others, that...

Born To Litigate: Springsteen Makes A Coverage Case

What do you call a coverage case that quotes lyrics from a Bruce Springsteen song? An embarrassment of riches. A number of judicial opinions have quoted lyrics from Springsteen. His vivid descriptions and observations of everyday life, the human spirit and ordinary folks just trying to get by, offer...

Construction Defect: Court’s Lesson On Drafting A “Designated Work” Exclusion

Liability insurers know that writing contractors can be challenging. Some just don’t. Others do -- but not without using a buffet of manuscript endorsements that are designed to manage the risk by eliminating unwanted exposures. I have written about lots of these endorsements in past issues of...

Computer Fraud Not the Same as Check Fraud: Broad Exclusion – if Plain – Applies

As Willie Sutton once said about why he robbed banks, “it’s where the money is.” Modern day bank robbers don’t use guns, they use computers, computer viruses, and make transfers of money from the bank to the account held by the thief without ever going near a bank. Insurers are...

An Insurance Blue Moon: Coverage Owed For Sexual Assault -- “A Particularly Odd Set of Facts”

The number of decisions addressing the availability of coverage for a sexual assault are legion. They often, but not always, arise under the liability section of a homeowner’s policy. I have never undertaken a formal count, but, anecdotally, I can say that coverage is rarely owed for such claims...

No Cover for Incorrectly Performed Work: Insurance is Not a Guarantee of Good Workmanship

Contractors and developers purchase insurance to protect against bodily injury or property damage caused by their negligence. It does not, nor could it do so and still be insurance, guarantee the quality of workmanship of the insured. The policies clearly exclude damages arising out of work performed...

When Is an Exclusion “Conspicuous, Plain and Clear”: There Is No Duty to Defend if There Is No Potential for Coverage

Insurance policies must be interpreted with care. Since they are contracts of adhesion they are usually interpreted with a bias towards providing coverage for the insured. When an insured provides the information necessary to convince a court that there is a potential for coverage unless the insurer...

Well That Was Easy: Construction Defect: One Insurer’s Simple Solution To It All

If you are reading this then you are familiar with the surfeit of litigation, over the past decade-plus, concerning the availability of insurance coverage for construction defects. In very general terms you could say that there have been two types of cases – ones where coverage turns on whether...

Bar’s Policy That Excludes Assault & Battery Is Not Illusory

Tapas: Small Dishes of Insurance Coverage News & Notes It is not surprising that a bar owner, who did not pay a lot of attention to the ins and outs of his insurance, would be surprised to learn that his commercial general liability policy contained an Assault & Battery exclusion, as many...

Insured v. Insured Exclusion Held Ambiguous With Regard to Claims by the FDIC as Receiver

St. Paul Mercury Ins. Co. v. Hahn , 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153643 (C.D. Cal. October 8, 2014), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ]. In Hahn, the Central District of California ruled that the claims of the FDIC as receiver for a failed bank against the bank’s former officers...

I’m Not Lion: Court Holds That Cat Urine Not Precluded By Pollution Exclusion – Case More Enjoyable Than Cats

Pollution Exclusion cases have become so abundant, and similar, that I’ve taken to limiting my discussion of them in Coverage Opinions to the ones that are truly unique. (See CO, __ (trust me)). Mellin v. Northern Security Insurance Co., No 2014-020 (N.H. Apr. 24, 2015) is in the unique category...

New York Court Holds Parking Lot Exclusion Inapplicable

In its recent decision in Lancer Indem. Co. v JKH Realty Group, LLC, 2015 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 3293 (N.Y. 2d Dep’t Apr. 22, 2015), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the New York Appellate Division, Second Department, had occasion to consider the application of a parking lot...

Is There Coverage for Assaulting Your Employee? Business Dispute Not Covered by Homeowners

A Homeowners policy provides worldwide liability insurance coverage to the homeowners subject to various exclusions and limitations. In Perry v. Hartford Underwriters Insurance Company , Not Reported in A.3d, 2015 Del. Super. LEXIS 267 (Del.Super., 6/3/2015), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com...

California Court Considers Intentional Acts Exclusion in Homeowners Policy

In Albert v. Mid-Century Insurance Company , 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 431 (April 28, 2015, status changed from published to unpublished May 20, 2015), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the California Court of Appeal had occasion to consider whether the over-pruning of trees across...

Florida Court Addresses Products-Completed Operations Hazard

In its recent decision in Atlantic Cas. Ins. Co. v. LTA Distributor, LLC , 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70462 (S.D. Fla. June 1, 2015), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida had occasion to consider the application of a...

Randy Spencer’s Open Mic – Barry Manilow And Cyber Coverage: Court Writes The Songs For Policyholders

Not a day goes by it seems without news of a cyber attack resulting in the release of 4 trillion people’s personal information. It has gotten to the point where one’s identity could seemingly be stolen several times a month. Perhaps the solution for identify theft is to simply wait for your...

Three Sheets To The Win: Policyholder Rewarded For Being Drunk

The court in IDS Property Casualty Ins. Co. v. Schonewolf, No. 13-6039, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 67542 (E.D. Pa. May 26, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], gave away the ending right at the get-go: “Although I am mindful that courts should...

No Nonsense Application of Plain Meaning of Exclusion – Reasonable Expectations Can’t Be Used to Change an Unambiguous Policy Exclusion

Everyone wants to live peacefully and happily in their homes. When a neighboring business causes fumes to travel to your property and make you live with noxious odors the chance to live peacefully and happily is lost. Litigation becomes certain and insurance coverage disputes arise. In Brouse v. Nationwide...

Professional Services Exclusion Did Not Preclude Coverage for Misrepresentation Claim Against Insured

Corky McMillin Constr. Servs. v. U.S. Specialty Ins. Co. , 597 Fed. Appx. 925 (9th Cir. 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ]. In Corky McMillin , the Ninth Circuit, applying California law, affirmed the Southern District of California’s...

How to Lose A Judgment by Taking an Assignment – Don’t Take Defendant’s Case Against His Insurer in Lieu of a Collectable Judgment

Greed often overrules common sense. When an insurer refuses to defend or indemnify its insured the plaintiff will take an agreed judgment against the defendant, then agree not to execute on the judgment in exchange for an assignment from the defendant of its right to sue the insurer. In so doing it takes...

Wage and Hour Exclusion Barred Coverage for Underlying Wage and Hour Class Action Asserting Claims for Misrepresentation, California Labor Code Violations and Unfair Competition

Admiral Ins. Co. v Kay Automotive Distributors, Inc. , 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11357 (C.D. Cal. Jan. 29, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ]. In Admiral , the Central District of California held that a wage and hour exclusion contained in...

Appeals Court Pushes Back On Insurer’s Effort To Limit Construction Site Bodily Injury Claims

Insurers have long been writing endorsements to reduce their exposure for property damage caused by construction defects. These efforts have been taking place with First Manifestation, Loss in Progress and similarly named endorsements. Of course, insurers also face enormous exposure for bodily injury...