LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Cooking Grease Can Be A Pollutant

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant Christopher Roinestad and Gerald Fitz-Gerald, and Tim Kirkpatrick, D/B/A Hog's Breath Saloon & Restaurant ("respondents") were overcome by poisonous hydrogen sulfide gas while cleaning a large grease clog in a sewer near the Hog's Breath...

Title Insurer Underwriter Not Liable for Agent's Negligence Title Search

By Robert A. Scott Title insurance companies can enforce exculpatory provisions in title insurance policies that exclude liability for tort claims based on a negligent title search performed by an agent, Maryland's highest court has ruled. In 100 Investment LP v. Columbia Town Title , decided...

South Carolina Court Holds No Coverage for Blast Fax Case Under E&O Policy

Brian Margolies, Partner, Traub Lieberman Straus & Shrewsberry LLP In its recent decision in BCS Ins. Co. v. Big Thyme Enters ., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20051 (D.S.C. Feb. 14, 2013), the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina had occasion to consider whether an alleged violation...

Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP: Insurer’s Silence Does Not Evidence Consent For Purposes of Voluntary Payments Condition

by Andrew May In West Bend Mutual Insurance Co. v. Arbor Homes LLC , No. 12-2274 (7th Cir. Jan 8, 2013), ( lexis.com enhanced version of decision available ), the Seventh Circuit reaffirmed the critical importance of obtaining an insurer's consent before settling a case. The coverage action...

Want Coverage for Construction Related Damage? You Need an Occurrence

In reading the title to this post, you are likely thinking "Duh, of course you do, if nothing "occurs" then there is nothing to cover!" (or something to that effect). While this seems an obvious conclusion, we're talking the world of law, construction and insurance coverage where...

Bullivant Houser Bailey: Washington Supreme Court Announces New Presumption of No Attorney-Client Privilege for First-Party Insurers

By Daniel R. Bentson and Matthew J. Sekits In Washington bad faith actions, first-party insurers now face a presumption that the attorney-client privilege does not apply. In Cedell v. Farmers Ins. Co. of Wash., 2013 Wash. LEXIS 149 (Wash. Feb. 21, 2013) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers...

Farella Braun + Martel LLP: Protect Your Business With Cyber Liability Coverage

By Amanda Hairston, Senior Associate, Farella Braun + Martel LLP Many insurers are now offering "cyber liability" or "cyber risk" policies designed to protect policyholders against electronic injuries that policyholders may either suffer themselves or cause to others. Most of these...

California Insurance Commissioner Applauds Ceres for Insurer Climate Change Survey Report

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones has applauded Ceres for releasing its report, Insurer Climate Risk Disclosure Survey: 2012 Findings & Recommendations, which analyzes responses to the Climate Risk Disclosure Survey administered by California, New York, and Washington. "Ceres'...

McCarter & English LLP on District Court Applies Maryland Law; Finds Coverage for Asphalt Spill Despite Absolute Pollution Exclusion

By Brian J. Osias and Michael Collins Smith, Attorneys, McCarter & English, LLP In Travelers Indemnity Co. v. MTS Transport , No. 11-cv-01567, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127847 (W.D. Pa. Sep. 7, 2012), the federal court for the Western District of Pennsylvania demonstrated again the importance of a...

McNees Wallace & Nurick: Is That Covered - Jerry Sandusky

On March 1, 2013 the Federal District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania ruled that Jerry Sandusky is NOT entitled to insurance coverage under the Second Mile's Employment Practices Liability insurance policy for defense costs and attorneys' fees for both the criminal case and the...

Perkins Coie LLP on Denial of Coverage to Direct Action Statute Claimant for Failing to Report the Claim to the Insurer During the Policy Period Provides Reason to Review Notice Rules and Pertinent Recent Developments

By Stephen M. Feldman and Nicholas P. Gellert, Attorneys, Perkins Coie LLP Although the case arose within the unique framework of Louisiana's Direct Action Statute and was said to be an issue undecided by the Louisiana Supreme Court requiring an " Erie guess," the Fifth Circuit's...

SNR Denton on Cedell v. Farmers Insurance Co.: Washington Limits Attorney-Client Privilege in First-Party Bad Faith Cases

By William T. Barker & Ronald D. Kent, Partners, SNR Denton In Cedell v. Farmers Insurance Co., the Washington Supreme Court held that, in a first-party bad faith claim (other than regarding a uninsured or underinsured motorist claim), the insurer's quasi-fiduciary duty of good faith and fair...

Perkins Coie LLP on Fifth Circuit Holds That Terms of Insurance Policy, Not Indemnification Provision of Contract, Controls Coverage for BP in Deepwater Horizon Insurance Dispute

By James G. Bernald, Associate, Perkins Coie LLP Many different civil suits arose out of the April 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon , a semi-submersible, mobile offshore drilling unit, and the resulting oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This commentary analyzes an important decision in one of...

Jenner & Block: Insurer Unable To Step Into CERCLA Shoes Of Insured

A recent Ninth Circuit decision limited the ability of an insurer to seek CERCLA contribution and/or cost recovery from potentially responsible parties ("PRPs"). In Chubb Custom Insurance Company v. Space Systems/Loral et al. , [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], Chubb...

Coverage Opinions–September 11th: Revisiting The “War Risk” Exclusion

By Randy J. Maniloff, White and Williams, LLP New York Federal Court Holds That September 11th Was An "Act Of War" In the immediate aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, there was intense political pressure on the insurance industry not to invoke the "war risk" exclusion...

Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 Amendments to Flood Disaster Protection Act

By the Ballard Spahr LLP Mortgage Banking Group The federal banking agencies, together with the Farm Credit Administration, have issued joint guidance on amendments to the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 (FDPA). The amendments were part of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012...

Insurer Need Only Respond to Risk It Agreed to Insure

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant In Seneca Insurance Company, Inc., Plaintiff-Appellant-Respondent v. Cimran Co., Inc., et al., Defendants-Respondents-Appellants. , No. 9226 (N.Y.App.Div. 04/09/2013), [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the parties brought an appeal that...

Bullivant Houser Bailey: Attorney-Client Privilege Analyzed by Idaho Federal Court in Insurance Company's Bad Faith Case

By Matthew E. Hedberg , Bullivant Houser Bailey PC In an opinion issued April 3, 2013, the Idaho federal district court held that when an attorney participates in the investigation of a claim and provides coverage advice, the facts gathered by the attorney may be discoverable in a bad faith lawsuit...

DLA Piper – Australia: Insurance Review April 2013

Welcome to Insurance Review April 2013 , DLA Piper's publication dedicated to the insurance industry. In this edition we report on developments across the insurance industry, including the long-awaited amendments to the Insurance Contracts Act 1984 (Cth), the proposal to introduce unfair contract...

The Boston Bombing: Early Thoughts On Insurance Coverage

In the aftermath of the September 11th attacks, the insurance industry and federal government took a hard look at insurance coverage and put many provisions in place to address any future attacks. Thankfully, all of that work collected dust for over a decade. But the tragic Boston Marathon bombings changed...

D&O Insurance to Fund Entire "Largest Ever" $139 Million News Corp. Derivative Suit Settlement

In what the plaintiffs' lawyers claim to be the largest derivative lawsuit settlement ever, the parties to the News Corp. shareholder derivative litigation have agreed to settle the consolidated cases for $139 million. The company also agreed to tighten oversight of the company's operations and...

Smaller Companies Should Consider Cyber-Liability Insurance

By Kevin M. LaCroix, Esq., Executive Vice President, OakBridge Insurance Services Smaller companies increasingly are the subject of data breaches and those smaller companies "are the number-one target of cyber-espionage attackers," according to a recent study detailed in a April 24, 2013...

Massachusetts Rejects “In For One, In for All” Theory in Title Insurance Coverage

By Richard D. Vetstein, ESQ One little mistake in drafting and recording legal documents during a refinance can result in a huge problem for a lender - such as the lender having no legal ability to enforce the mortgage! (A slight problem..) GMAC Mortgage learned this the hard way at the Supreme Judicial...

Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP: Missouri Court Applies “All Sums” Allocation to Long-Tail Environmental Coverage Dispute

by Seth Lamden , Partner, Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP The court in Doe Run Resources Corporation v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's London , No. ED98086, 2013 Mo. App. LEXIS 468 (April 16, 2013) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], held that excess liability insurers were...

Traub Lieberman Insurance Law Blog: Oklahoma Court Addresses Time Element Pollution Exclusion

Brian Margolies, Partner, Traub Lieberman Straus & Shrewsberry LLP In its recent decision in Colony Insurance Company v. Bear Products, Inc ., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43716 (E.D. Okl. Mar. 26, 2013) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the United States District Court for the...