LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
New York Court Holds Fraudulent Act Exclusion Applicable in LPL Policy

In its recent decision in Lewis & Stanzione v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co ., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78259 (N.D.N.Y. June 17, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York...

Is That Covered - Misrepresentations In Sale of Life Insurance

By Michael R. Kelley A Pennsylvania appellate court, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], has affirmed a $300,000 judgment against Riversource Life Insurance Co. in a suit accusing the insurer and its agent of making fraudulent misrepresentations...

Ninth Circuit Holds Known Loss Language Inapplicable

In Kaady v. Mid-Continent Casualty Company , 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 10754 (9th Cir. June 25, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, applying Oregon law, had opportunity to consider the meaning...

To Be or Not to Be – an Insured Contract: Coverage for Breach of Warranty Claims

By Jill Berkeley , Partner, Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP In Bituminous Casualty Corporation v. Plano Molding Company , 2015 IL App (2d) 140292, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ],the Illinois Appellate Court tackled one of the most misunderstood...

Crime Doesn’t Pay – Running Over Victim in the Course of a Robbery Is not an Accident

Insurance, as I have said often, only insures against fortuitous events. If the event is either contingent or unknown it can be insured against. In Smith v. Patton , Slip Copy, 2015 Wisc. App. LEXIS 547 (Wis.App., July 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com ...

Is That Covered? Reservation of Rights

By Michael R. Kelley If a policyholder is sued, she can tender the defense of that suit to her insurance company. If the insurance company believes that there may not be coverage, but cannot make a clear determination based upon the complaint filed, the insurer can issue a "reservation of...

New York Court Enforces Voluntary Payment Provision

In its recent decision in SI Venture Holdings, LLC v. Catlin Specialty Insurance , 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 89925 (S.D.N.Y. July 10, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York had...

Is That Covered? Lost Insurance Policy

By Michael R. Kelley Many liability policies are triggered when an event giving rise to a covered claim occurs , rather than when the claim is asserted or filed with the court. This is often true of the most common type of liability coverage - the commercial general liability policy. For instance...

State of California v. C.N.A. (Stringfellow) Prejudgment Interest Decision

In the decision just released in the State of California "Stringfellow" case , the Superior Court of the State of California awarded the State of California the amount of $13,914,082.09, the full amount of mandatory pre-judgment interest and, alternatively if that is reversed through the judicial...

How the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's Decision in Mutual Benefit Will Affect Your Business Insurance Coverage

By Michael R. Kelley On May 26, 2015, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court handed down its much anticipated decision in Mutual Benefit Ins. Co. v. Christos Politsopoulos [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ]. The decision is good news for policyholders...

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...

PA Supreme Court Gives Policy Holders Right to Settle Without Insurer Approval

By Michael R. Kelley Insurance coverage counsel have been anxiously awaiting the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's decision in Babcock & Wilcox Co. v. Am. Nuclear Insurers , 2015 Pa. Lexis 1551 (July 21, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance...

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...

WVSCA Clarifies Retroactive Application of Cherrington to Pending Cases

On May 20, 2015, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals concluded in BPI, Inc. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company , [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], that its prior decision in Cherrington v. Erie Insurance Property & Casualty Co . should...

A Horse is a Horse, of Course – A Horse is Not “Mobile Equipment”

As Mr. Ed once said, cogently, “a horse is a horse, of course,” and it is nothing more. Although insurance terms and conditions can be interpreted to cover a multiple of sins, it cannot change the obvious. FACTS In the fall of 2006, a taxi insured by the petitioner was involved in a...

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Holds Insured Entitled to Settle Underlying Claim Even Absent Insurer Consent

In its recent decision in Babcock & Wilcox Co. v. American Nuclear Insurers , 2015 Pa. LEXIS 1551 (Pa. July 21, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, deciding a matter of first impression within the Commonwealth...

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...

Fifth Circuit Holds Insurer Waived One-Year Reporting Requirement in Pollution Buy-Back Endorsement

In its recent decision in Cox Operating, L.L.C. v. St. Paul Surplus Lines Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 13318 (5 th Cir. July 30, 2015), [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, applying Texas...

Why Failure To Read Policy Hurts Both Insured and Insurer – Per Claim Deductible Defeats Cover for Bad Faith Suit

It sees to me that no one reads an insurance policy until a claim is made. Even insurers fail to read or apply the terms and conditions of the policy to the facts of a loss. In Western Heritage Ins. Co. v. Asphalt Wizards , — F.3d —-, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 13263 (C.A.8 (Mo.) 7/30/2015), [subscribers...

Babcock & Wilcox v. American Nuclear Insurers: Why Insurers Are The Real Winners In Pennsylvania High Court’s Adoption Of Arizona’s Morris Rule

Justice Stanley Feldman (Ret.) Of The Arizona Supreme Court -- Author of Morris -- Provides Comment [Disclosure: I, along with two colleagues, filed an amicus brief with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, in Babcock & Wilcox Company v. American Nuclear Insurers, on behalf of an insurance industry...

Appeals Court Swats Policyholders: Pollution Exclusion Applies To Flies

It has become difficult these days to find a pollution exclusion case that warrants discussion. In general, while each case is different, they also often have many similarities. Does the exclusion apply narrowly and only to traditional environmental pollution? Or does it apply more broadly to all hazardous...

Insurer’s Duty to Defend Did Not Arise until Insurer Was Provided with All Necessary Information to Determine the Existence of Coverage

Carrier’s Right to Control the Defense Includes the Right to Appoint Counsel of Its Choosing and to Settle Claims without the Participation of the Insured Travelers Prop. Cas. Co. of Am. v. Kaufman & Broad Monterey Bay, Inc ., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16952 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 11, 2015) [subscribers...

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...

Court Refuses to Recognize the Claim File Privilege as Providing a Basis for Refusing to Produce Documents in an Insured’s Claim File during Discovery

In Oahu Air , [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the Eastern District of California refused to recognize the claim file privilege, finding that federal privilege law did not recognize that privilege as a proper ground for withholding documents during...