GRETNA, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on May 16 affirmed a lower court's judgment granting an insurer's exception of prescription in a Hurricane Katrina coverage dispute and remanded to allow the insureds the opportunity to amend and supplement their petition within 21 days (Karen Baker, et al. v. Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corp., No. 12-CA-480, La. App., 5th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 951).
NEW ORLEANS - A federal judge in Louisiana on May 4 dismissed four environmental groups from a lawsuit over an alleged ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico caused by an underwater mudslide during Hurricane Ivan in September 2004 after finding that the groups lacked standing to pursue claims under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) (Apalachiola Riverkeeper, et al. v. Taylor Energy Company LLC, No. 12-0337 "Section E," E.D. La.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64388).
LAKE CHARLES, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on May 1 affirmed a lower court's $50,000 judgment in favor of insureds in their lawsuit alleging that negligent misrepresentations by their insurance agency and federal flood insurer led them to believe that they had a valid federal flood insurance policy in place at the time of Hurricane Ike (Kay Barnett, et ux. v. Fidelity National Property & Casualty Co., et al., No. 12-1415, La. App., 3rd Cir.).
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - An insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its property owners association insured and members of the insured's board of directors against underlying claims that the members used their positions for self-dealing and to facilitate a takeover by a gaming corporation that sought to build a casino in or near a neighborhood that sustained damage from Hurricane Katrina, a Mississippi federal judge ruled April 23 (State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. Tom Anderson, et al., No. 1:11-CV-304-KS-JMR. S. D. Miss., Southern Div.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57837).
NEW ORLEANS - The Louisiana Supreme Court on April 19 granted a writ application challenging a lower court's ruling that sustained a homeowners insurer's peremptory exception of prescription and dismissed the insureds' Hurricane Katrina coverage lawsuit against the insurer, according to a court press release (Rafael And Dioigna Acevedo v. Louisiana Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Co., No. 2012-C-1790, La. Sup.).
NEW ORLEANS - The actions of the Army Corps of Engineers in supervising the remediation project executed by Washington Group International Inc. (WGI) along the East Bank Industrial Area (EBIA) did not substantially cause the north and south breaches of the EBIA floodwall that resulted in the inundation and destruction of the Lower Ninth Ward and parts of Chalmette, La., during Hurricane Katrina, a Louisiana federal judge ruled April 12 (In re: Katrina Canal Breaches Consolidated Litigation, No. 05-4182, E.D. La.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53802).
GRETNA, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on April 10 reversed and remanded a lower court's ruling that sustained a homeowners insurer's exception of prescription in an insured's lawsuit seeking coverage for Hurricane Katrina property damage, finding that running of prescription on the insured's claim was suspended by the original filing of the "Road Home" litigation in a Louisiana state court (Angela Harrison v. Horace Mann Insurance Co., No. 12-CA-753, La. App., 5th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 709).
GRETNA, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on April 10 affirmed a lower court's ruling granting a homeowners insurer's exception of prescription but remanded the case to permit the insureds to amend their petitions to show that their Hurricane Katrina property damage claims have not prescribed (Lionel Williams v. Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Co., No. 12-CA-603 c/w 12-CA-604 and 12-CA-605, La. App., 5th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 704).
NEW ORLEANS - A unanimous Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel issued an opinion April 9 affirming dismissal of the Louisiana plaintiffs' claims against the Federal Emergency Management Agency for providing portable trailers as emergency housing in response to hurricane damage in 2005 (In re FEMA Trailer Formaldehyde Products Liability Litigation (Louisiana Plaintiffs), No. 12-30635, 5th Cir.).
MIAMI - After granting an insurer's motion for rehearing in a Hurricane Wilma coverage dispute, a Florida appeals panel on April 3 concluded that a lower court properly found that the insurer was presumed prejudiced by an insured's late notice and that the insured failed to overcome the presumption of prejudice (1500 Coral Towers Condominium Association Inc. v. Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, No. 3D12-132, Fla. App., 3rd Dist.; 2013 Fla. App. LEXIS 5363).
GALVESTON, Texas - An insured's failure to submit a proof or loss for additional insurance benefits under her federal flood insurance policy is fatal to her claim, a Texas federal magistrate judge ruled March 29, granting the insurer's motion for summary judgment in a Hurricane Ike coverage dispute (Holly Cooper-Roell v. Fidelity National Property and Casualty Insurance Co., No. G-10-359, S.D. Texas; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 46511).
JACKSON, Miss. - A Mississippi appeals court on March 26 affirmed a jury's $1.17 million award in favor of a hardware store insured in a Hurricane Katrina wind coverage dispute, further affirming a directed verdict in favor of the insurer on the insured's bad faith claim (Coastal Hardware and Rental Co. v. Certain Underwriters At Lloyds, London, No. 2011-CA-00765-COA, Miss. App.; 2013 Miss. App. LEXIS 136).
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal magistrate judge on March 27 granted an insured's motion to amend his complaint to assert an additional breach of contract claim for repudiation against the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), but refused to allow the insured to assert a declaratory judgment claim in his lawsuit seeking coverage for Hurricane Irene flood damage (Christopher Jakubowski v. FEMA, No. 2:12-cv-02202 $(CCC$) $(JAD$), D. N.J.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43789).
HOUSTON - A Texas federal judge on March 25 found in favor of a primary insurer and an excess insurer in an insured's breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit arising from property damage caused by Hurricane Ike (S.R. Residence LLC v. Lexington Insurance Co., et al., No. H-10-4178, S.D. Texas, Houston Div.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41628).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on March 20 found that an appraisal proceeding had not appraised an insured's ordinance and law coverage stemming from Hurricane Wilma, reversing and remanding a lower court's ruling in the insurer's favor (Roy Jossfolk v. United Property & Casualty Insurance Co., No. 4D12-443, Fla. App., 4th Dist.; 2013 Fla. App. LEXIS 4443).
GRETNA, La. - A condominium association failed to carry its burden of proving that underlying claims stemming from hurricane damages were prescribed, a Louisiana appeals panel ruled March 13, reversing and remanding a lower court's judgment sustaining the exception of prescription (Danny Allday v. Newpark Square I Office Condominium Association Inc., et al., No. 12-CA-577, La. App., 5th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 469).
NEW ORLEANS - A Louisiana federal judge on March 11 found that a sale of litigation agreement effected a valid sale of litigious rights between a hotel owner insured and its excess insurers, rejecting another insurer's contention that the excess insurers have no legal basis to pursue it for hotel damages caused by Hurricane Katrina (WH Holdings LLC, et al. v. Ace American Insurance Co., No.07-7110, E.D. La.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33181).
NEW ORLEANS - A Louisiana federal judge on March 7 denied an insurer's motion for new trial or to alter or amend her Jan. 3 judgment that a state parish government is entitled to coverage under excess public entity insurance policies for damages it caused in condemning and demolishing properties deemed unsafe after Hurricane Katrina (Lexington Insurance Company v. St. Bernard Parish Government, No. 11-1865, E.D. La.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 31561).
ATLANTA - A split 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 6 upheld a verdict for unpaid overtime wages for two workers despite their failure to properly report their wages to the federal government and the illegal status of one of the workers (Reinaldo Ramon Lamonica, et al. v. Safe Hurricane Shutters, Inc., et al., No. 11-15743, 11th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 4599).
GALVESTON, Texas - An insured's lawsuit seeking coverage under his Standard Flood Insurance Policy (SFIP) for property damage caused by Hurricane Ike was timely filed, a Texas federal magistrate judge ruled March 1, denying the insurer's motion for summary judgment (Don Wolfe v. American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, No. G-10-578, S.D. Texas, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28258).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 26 affirmed a lower federal court's dismissal of Orleans Parish, La., property owners' wind damage claims stemming from Hurricane Katrina, finding that the claims are untimely (McKnight McGee, et al. v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., No. 12-30429, 5th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 3932).
GRETNA, La. - A Louisiana appeals panel on Feb. 21 affirmed a lower court ruling denying insureds' motion to set aside the dismissal of their Hurricane Katrina coverage lawsuit for abandonment (Frank Gambino, et al. v. The Standard Fire Insurance Co., et al., No. 12-CA-474, La. App., 5th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 272).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 22 affirmed a lower court's final amended judgment in favor of a liability insurer in a coverage suit arising from environmental cleanup costs related to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita (Mid-Continent Casualty Co. v. Eland Energy Inc., et al., No. 11-10649, 5th Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 3741).
NEW ORLEANS - Damages allegedly caused by the Plaquemines Parish Government's failure to properly maintain hurricane protection levees is not a risk covered by an excess marine insurance policy, a Louisiana appeals panel found Feb. 20, affirming a lower court in a Hurricane Katrina coverage dispute (Melvin Burmaster, et al. v. Plaquemines Parish Government, et al., No. 2012-CA-1091, La. App., 4th Cir.; 2013 La. App. LEXIS 267).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 11 affirmed a lower federal court's ruling on bad faith and business interruption claims in favor of excess insurers in a coverage dispute arising from Hurricane Katrina damage (Claude C. Lightfoot Jr., substituted as Trustee of the MBS Unsecured Creditors' Trust formed in connection with the bankruptcy of MBS Management Services Inc. v. Hartford Insurance Co., No. 12-30443, 5th Cir.).