AUSTIN, Texas - The special deputy receiver of an insolvent insurer informed a Texas court on May 4 that a newly appointed state insurance commissioner has taken over as liquidator of the insolvent insurer (The State of Texas and the Texas Department of Insurance v. Vesta Fire Insurance Corporation, et al., No. D-1-GN-002366, Texas Dist., Travis Co.).
CONCORD, N.H. - The liquidator of an insolvent insurer told a federal court in New Hampshire on May 1 that two reinsurers waived their right to remove an asbestos and environmental claims reinsurance dispute from the state court by agreeing to a service of suit clause in the underlying reinsurance agreements (N.H. Insurance Department, Commissioner v. British Aviation Insurance Company Limited, et al., No. 15-cv-00127, D. N.H.).
CHICAGO - The liquidator of an insolvent insurer told an Illinois court on April 30 that a claim by a company that had provided services to the insolvent insurer's insureds should be paid, including certain post-judgment interest calculated at Texas' statutory post-judgment interest rate (People of the State of Illinois, ex rel. Andrew Boron, Director of Insurance of the State of Illinois v. Concert Health Plan Insurance Company, No. 13-CH-27224, Ill. Cir., Cook Co.).
NEW YORK - Owners of vehicles containing defective ignition switches on April 29 told the judge overseeing multidistrict litigation against General Motors LLC (New GM) that they intend to appeal a ruling by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York finding that the bulk of ignition switch suits stemming from conduct on the part of General Motors Corp. (Old GM) are barred (In re General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation, No. 14-md-2543 [JMF], S.D. N.Y.).
BOSTON - The manufacturer of pharmaceutical cleanrooms and its insurer will pay $1 million to settle allegations that defective cleanrooms contributed to a nationwide outbreak of fungal meningitis, according to a settlement agreement proposed April 20 by a bankruptcy trustee (In Re: New England Compounding Pharmacy, Inc., No. 12-19882, D. Mass. Bkcy., Eastern Div.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on April 14 authorized a creditors' committee in the Chapter 11 case of Energy Future Holdings Corp. (EFH) to hire an asbestos noticing expert to evaluate the debtor's proposed procedures for notifying asbestos personal injury claimants of a bar date for their claims (In re: Energy Future Holdings Corp., No. 14-10979, D. Del. Bkcy.).
NEW YORK - A sale order and injunction issued pursuant to Section 363 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code shields General Motors LLC (New GM) from liability for the majority of ignition-switch suits stemming from conduct on the part of General Motors Corp. (Old GM), a bankruptcy judge in New York held April 15 (In re: Chapter 11 Motors Liquidation Co., et al., f/k/a General Motors Corp., et al., No. 09-50026, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - Holders of allowed asbestos personal injury claims against Chapter 11 debtor Energy Future Holdings Corp. (EFH) will be paid in full for their claims, according to a plan of reorganization and disclosure statement filed by the energy company April 14 in Delaware federal bankruptcy court (In re: Energy Future Holdings Corp., No. 14-10979, D. Del. Bkcy.).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC's proposed procedures for objecting to and disallowing claims of 2,333 people seeking payment for asbestos-related injuries under prepetition settlements with Garlock should be rejected because the procedures are one-sided, unreasonable and unnecessary in the face of more pressing litigation to determine if Garlock's plan of reorganization can be confirmed, the asbestos claimants' committee in Garlock's Chapter 11 case said April 13 in an objection filed in North Carolina federal bankruptcy court (In re: Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC, No. 10-31607, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A North Carolina federal bankruptcy judge on April 10 approved the disclosure statement for Chapter 11 debtor Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC's plan of reorganization, established a bar date for asbestos personal injury claims against Garlock, allowed the future claimants' representative (FCR) to vote on the reorganization plan and scheduled the plan confirmation hearing for June 2016 (In re: Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC, No. 10-31607, W.D. N.C. Bkcy.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware federal bankruptcy judge on April 8 confirmed a reorganization plan for Chapter 11 debtor Yarway Corp. that establishes a $325 million trust to process and pay thousands of asbestos injury and wrongful death claims (In re: Yarway Corporation, No. 13-11025, D. Del. Bkcy.).
FRESNO, Calif. - The receiver of an insolvent insurer asked a federal court in California on April 1 to certify one of the court's previous orders as final (Thomas T. Hawker, et al. v. BancInsure, Inc., et al., No. 12-cv-01261, E.D. Calif.).
LOS ANGELES - A couple asked a federal judge in California on March 30 to exclude a bankruptcy trust estimation order critical of asbestos litigation, while three defendants sought to exclude expert testimony that "each and every exposure" contributes to a disease (Howard Utech, an individual, Joann Utech, an individual v. Asbestos Corporation Limited, et al., No. 14-4977, C.D. Calif.).
RALEIGH, N.C. - A federal bankruptcy court judge in North Carolina on March 27 denied an electrical conduit subcontractor's motion to reconsider or amend a previous ruling denying its motion for summary judgment in a third-party suit brought by a subcontractor that installed a post-tension system in a condominium complex's concrete, finding that the electrical subcontractor did not show that the Sept. 30, 2014, order was based on clear error (New Bern Development LLC, No. 09-10340-SWH, E.D N.C. Bky.; 2015 Bankr. LEXIS 952).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should reverse approval of Pittsburgh Corning Corp.'s (PCC) plan of reorganization because it improperly relieves PCC's corporate parents and hundreds of affiliates of asbestos liability while establishing a trust controlled by plaintiffs' attorneys that will pay invalid claims "under a veil of secrecy," two insurers argue in a March 23 brief in their appeal of PCC's plan confirmation (In re: Pittsburgh Corning Corporation [Mt. McKinley Insurance Company, et al. v. Pittsburgh Corning Corporation, et al.], No. 14-4329, 3rd Cir.).
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin on March 18 signed legislation that proponents hope encourages transparency in asbestos bankruptcy trust filings.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A Florida appellate panel on March 12 issued a writ of certiorari and quashed a trial court's order compelling the deposition of the state's insurance commissioner in a suit against the accounting firm of three insolvent insurers (Florida Office of Insurance Regulation v. Florida Department of Financial Services, as Receiver for Southern Family Insurance Company, et al., No. 1D14-4417, Fla. App., 1st Dist.).
LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on March 13 found that a lower court erred in holding that insureds were entitled to appraisal of their claim for sinkhole damage, reversing, remanding and certifying two questions to the Florida Supreme Court (Florida Insurance Guaranty Association Inc., v. Daniel Hunnewell, et al., No. 2D14-397, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2015 Fla. App. LEXIS 3614).
NEW YORK - A New York federal bankruptcy judge on March 16 expanded the services of the special insurance counsel for asbestos personal injury creditors in the Chapter 11 case of Rapid-American Corp. to include insurance coverage litigation expected to be filed against the debtor's remaining excess insurers (In re: Rapid-American Corporation, No. 13-10687, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - With a second confirmation hearing for The Flintkote Co.'s plan of reorganization set for August, the Delaware federal bankruptcy judge overseeing the case on March 13 gave the debtor more time to file a plan, solicit votes on it and remove bankruptcy prepetition causes of action (In re: The Flintkote Co., et al., No. 04-11300, D. Del. Bkcy.).
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The most efficient forum for Chapter 11 debtor Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC's four adversary complaints accusing several asbestos plaintiff law firms of fraud is in North Carolina, where Garlock's bankruptcy case is pending, a federal judge in that state ruled March 9 in denying the law firms' motions to transfer the cases to the states where the underlying cases were heard (Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC v. Waters & Kraus, LLP, et al., No. 14-130; Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC v. Belluck & Fox, LLP, et al., No. 14-118; Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC v. Shein Law Center, Ltd., et al., No. 14-137; and Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC v. Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, APLC, et al., No. 14-116, W.D. N.C.).
ST. LOUIS - An Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on March 3 affirmed a lower court decision in favor of an insolvent insurer, holding that a bank did not prove that a purported forgery on a lease guaranty instrument caused the bank's loss of more than $2 million (BancInsure, Inc. v. Highland Bank, No. 13-3324, 8th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3260).
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The West Virginia Senate on Feb. 27 unanimously adopted legislation requiring plaintiffs to submit sworn statements disclosing asbestos bankruptcy trust submissions and taking other measures that will allegedly contribute to transparency in the process.
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 23 stayed an appeal by an attorney seeking to force six asbestos trusts to resume processing his claims until the court decides whether to dismiss the appeal at the request of the trusts for lack of jurisdiction (Michael J. Mandelbrot, et al. v. Armstrong World Industries Asbestos Personal Injury Settlement Trust, et al., No. 14-4173, 3rd Cir.).
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A Florida judge on Feb. 19 ordered a Nevada-domiciled insurer into an ancillary receivership after the insurer was put into liquidation in its home state (State of Florida, ex rel., the Florida Department of Financial Services v. Sensible Home Warranty, LLC, No. 2015-CA-0273, Fla. Cir., 2nd Cir., Leon Co.).