Are Property Insurance Claims Getting Harder to Settle?

By Joe Whalen, Insurance and Risk Management Consultant, Farella Braun + Martel How much of a typical large property claim (property, builders risk, business interruption, and extra expense losses in excess of $5,000,000) actually gets paid by insurance, and how long does it take to settle a large...

Class Action Settlement Approved for Out-of-Network Providers in AMA v United Healthcare Lawsuit Related to Uniform and Customary Rates

NEW YORK - (Mealey's) A New York federal judge on Sept. 20 granted final approval to a $350 million class action settlement with United HealthCare Corp., ending claims that United companies allegedly underpaid professional providers for out-of-network services ( The American Medical Association,...

Top Case of the Week: Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Complaint Against Reinsurer

Arrowood Surplus Lines Ins. Co. v. Westport Ins. Corp., (2d Cir. (Conn.) October 8, 2010) Plaintiff’s predecessor, Royal Surplus Lines Insurance Company (“Royal Surplus”) entered into an agreement pursuant to which it assumed the liabilities and acquired the related assets of Connecticut...

SNR Denton on Doherty v. Merchants Mutual Insurance Co.: When Is Bad Faith Failure To Settle a Jury Question in New York?

By William T. Barker & Justin N. Kattan In Doherty v. Merchants Mutual Insurance Co. , [1] a sharply divided Appellate Division affirmed summary judgment for an insurer on bad faith failure to settle. If followed, this would arguably raise the already high threshold for failure to settle claims...

SNR Denton on Reasonableness of Insurer’s Delay in Offering Policy Limits Is Question of Fact: Allstate Insurance Co. v. Herron

By Ronald D. Kent, Partner, SNR Denton In Allstate Insurance Co. v. Herron, [1] Allstate had offered its policy limits, but not until after expiration of a time-limit demand. A jury found that Allstate had acted reasonably, and the Ninth Circuit affirmed in pertinent part. It found no abuse of discretion...

“Millions for Defense and not a Dime for Tribute.” Attempted Fraud Fails

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant Insurers Must Never Pay a Fraud When I was a young adjuster the motto of the insurance industry was "Millions for Defense and not a Dime for Tribute." Fraud was known but not a large problem. Police officers, when advised of fraud, would investigate...

Fifth Circuit Holds Settlement With Primary Insurer Did Not Result In Exhaustion

By Brian Margolies, Partner, Traub Lieberman Straus & Shrewsberry LLP In Citigroup Inc. v. Federal Ins. Co ., 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 16316 (5 th Cir. Aug. 8, 2011 ) , the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, applying Texas law, considered whether a settlement between an insured and...

Reed Smith LLP Policyholder Alert: Zeig Reconsidered?

By John Berringer and Michael DiCanio, Attorneys, Reed Smith LLP While it has long been the general rule in New York and other jurisdictions that a policyholder's settlement with a primary insurer for less than full policy limits can nevertheless trigger excess coverage, as long as the loss or...

Foley & Lardner: Between Mediation and Arbitration — Binding Mediation: The Third Alternative

By Robert C. (Bob) Leventhal , Partner, Foley & Lardner LLP The vast majority of reinsurance disputes are decided by alternative dispute resolution methods. Binding arbitration is the most widely used method. Recently there has been increased interest in mediation. There is, however, a third...

Wisconsin Appeals Court Puts The End In Defend: Insurer Can Settle The Only Covered Claim And Then Withdraw From The Defense

Randy J. Maniloff, White and Williams, LLP Overture, curtain, lights! This is it. We'll hit the heights! And oh, what heights we'll hit! On with the show, this is it! Consider this - An insurer is defending its insured in a case that has both covered and uncovered claims. The insurer settles...

Settlement Gavel

Settlement Reached in Death Master Case with New York Life Insurance Company

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones announced today that the California Department of Insurance has, with other state insurance regulators, reached a settlement agreement with New York Life Insurance Company over the insurer's use of the Social Security Administration's Death Master...

California Court Holds § 998 Offer Exceeding Policy Limits Made In Good Faith

In its recent decision in Aguilar v. Gostischef , 2013 Cal.App. LEXIS 816 (Cal. App. 2d Dist. Oct. 11, 2013) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], a California appellate court had occasion to consider whether a claimant’s statutory settlement offer under California Code of Civil...

Excess Carrier Could Not Seek Reimbursement from the Primary Insurer Based On Its Rejection of a Claimant’s Settlement Offer Within Its Primary Limits Because There Was Not a Final Excess Judgment

In RSUI Indemnity Co. v. Discover P&C Insurance Co [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the primary insurer issued the insured a commercial automobile liability policy with a $1 million limit per-occurrence and in the aggregate, while an excess insurer issued the insured a policy...

The Eastern District of California Holds That A Carrier May Have An Affirmative Duty To Attempt to Settle A Claim Against The Insured When It Is Presented With A Reasonable Settlement Opportunity

Travelers Indem. of Conn. v. Arch Specialty Ins. Co. , 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169453 (E.D. Cal. Nov. 26, 2013) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ] In Travelers , the district court concluded that the carrier must act in good faith in response to reasonable opportunities to settle...

Dentons on Taylor v. Allstate Insurance Co.: When Is a Texas Liability Insurer Liable for Inadequate Defense of a Case?

In Taylor v. Allstate Insurance Co.,[1] a Texas court of appeals held that the only common-law tort causes of action available against a liability insurer for allegedly inadequate defense of its insured are breach of contract and a Stowers[2] (failure to settle) claim, but that a contract claim might...