Mealey's Insurance - Issues Of Material Fact Preclude Summary Judgment, Alabama Federal Judge Says

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Because a disability insurer cannot prove than a disability plan was part of an employee welfare benefit package, the insurer's argument that the state law claims are preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act fails, an Alabama federal judge said Jan. 21 in denying...

Mealey's Insurance - Fast Issue Exists As To Whether Employee Had 'Manifest Intent,' Panel Says

NEW YORK - A New York appeals panel on Jan. 22 found that there is a fact issue regarding whether an employee's diversion of checks that were required to be deposited with his employer to a condominium developer manifests an intent to harm the employer within the meaning of a fidelity bond (Keybank...

Mealey's Insurance - Limited Discovery Allowed In Disability Suit, New York Federal Magistrate Rules

NEW YORK - A New York federal magistrate judge on Jan. 20 granted a disability claimant's motion to compel discovery on the limited issue of determining whether procedural irregularities or conflicts affected the insurer's denial of a long-term disability claim (Liyan He v. Cigna Life Insurance...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Says Insured Is Not Entitled To Attorney Fees In Construction Dispute

MILWAUKEE - An insured is not entitled to attorney fees from proceeds in a settlement of an underlying lawsuit regarding a construction project, a Wisconsin federal judge ruled Jan. 22 (Edward E. Gillen Co. v. The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania, No. 10-564, E.D. Wis.; 2015 U.S. Dist....

Mealey's Insurance - 'Claim' Was Made Against Insured During Policy Period, Federal Judge Rules

LAFAYETTE, La. - A Louisiana federal judge held Jan. 22 that a "claim" was made against an insured during its third-party administrator and technology professional liability, network security liability and business interruption insurance policy period, further finding that the insured provided...

Mealey's Insurance - Vermont High Court Finds Liquidation Final Bar Date Unfair To Excess Insurer

MONTPELIER, Vt. - The Vermont Supreme Court on Jan. 23 reversed a trial court's establishment of a final bar date because an insurer's liquidation estate has ample assets and the final bar date would be unfair to insureds and others with long-tail asbestos-related claims (In re Ambassador Insurance...

Mealey's Insurance - Mississippi High Court Majority Agrees To Hear Hurricane Katrina Casino Barge Suit

JACKSON, Miss. - A majority of the Mississippi Supreme Court on Jan. 22 granted a petition for writ of certiorari filed by an insured seeking to reverse an appeals court's rejection of her bad faith and negligence lawsuit arising from her alleged loss caused by a casino barge that collided with her...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Failure-To-Conform Exclusion Bars Coverage For Suits Over Energy Supplement

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. - All of the injuries alleged in three underlying lawsuits arise out of a pre-workout energy supplement's failure to conform with an insured's statements and, therefore, coverage for the actions is barred by the policy's failure-to-conform exclusion, a New York federal...

Mealey's Insurance - Insurers Have No Duty To Pay For Environmental Investigation, Panel Says

CHICAGO - The First District Illinois Appellate Court on Jan. 21 affirmed a trial court's ruling that insurers have no duty to indemnify an insured for environmental investigation costs because environmental investigation costs are not considered damages under Florida law (Premark International LLC...

Mealey's Insurance - ACA's Experimental, Consumer-Owned Insurer Funded With $146M Fails

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa - The Iowa insurance commissioner will liquidate CoOportunity Health Inc., a consumer-owned health insurance company started with $146 million in Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) funds, it announced Jan. 23 (State of Iowa, et al. v. CoOpportunity Health Inc., No...

Mealey's Insurance - Supreme Court Won't Hear Prejudgment Case Involving Subsidies

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 26 denied a petition from the State of Oklahoma seeking a writ of certiorari before judgment in its challenge to the availability of subsidies in Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) insurance exchanges (State of Oklahoma, ex rel. Scott Pruitt...

Mealey's Insurance - Pollution Exclusion Bars Coverage For Groundwater Contamination, Panel Says

CHICAGO - The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 23 affirmed a federal judge's ruling that a pollution exclusion precluded coverage for groundwater contamination caused by trichloroethylene (TCE) and other chemicals (Visteon Corporation, et al. v. National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh...

Mealey's Insurance - Panel Upholds Appraisal Award Regarding Insured's Losses From Storm Damage

MINNEAPOLIS - A Minnesota appeals panel on Jan. 26 affirmed an appraisal award regarding an insured's damages suffered from storms because the insured did not elect to waive an insurer's appraisal right and failed to present evidence to show that appraisers conducted the appraisal hearing in...

Mealey's Insurance - London Insurers File Suit, Claim Coverage Barred For Numerous Underlying Suits

NEW YORK - A group of London market insurers filed suit on Jan. 22 in the New York County Supreme Court, seeking a declaration that no coverage is owed for two environmental contamination suits filed against the insured and separate, personal injury suits arising out of chemical exposure to a butter...

Mealey's Insurance - Coinsurance Provision Is Unambiguous, 5th Circuit Says In Reversing

NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 26 found that it is apparent that the net income described in calculating a coinsurance penalty in a commercial property insurance policy is not actual net income but projected net income and, therefore, a lower federal court erred in finding...

Mealey's Insurance - HHS Seeks Dismissal Of House's Suit Over ACA Implementation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The House of Representatives lacks standing to challenge implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)'s employer mandate in court, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) told a federal judge in the District of Columbia on Jan. 26 (United...

Mealey's Insurance - Tennessee Federal Judge Dismisses Medicare False Claims Act Case

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Tennessee federal judge on Jan. 23 dismissed a Medicare False Claims Act case, saying the plaintiff failed to plead the claims with the specificity required (Kathleen McFeeters v. Northwest Hospital, et al., No. 13-467, M.D. Tenn.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8523).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Dismisses Insured's Breach Of Contract Claim Against Umbrella Insurer

PORTLAND, Ore. - An Oregon federal judge on Jan. 27 dismissed an insured's breach of contract counterclaim against its umbrella insurer regarding coverage for an underlying construction defects case (Chartis Specialty Insurance Co. f/k/a American International Specialty Lines Insurance Co. v. American...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Exclusions Do Not Bar Coverage For Claims Against Bank's Former Officers

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - An Iowa federal judge on Jan. 23 found that neither an "insured vs. insured" exclusion nor an "investment loss carve-out" in a directors and officers/company liability insurance policy precludes coverage for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.'s lawsuit against...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge OKs Insurer Dropping Claim To Enjoin Arbitration With Reinsurer

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A federal judge in Connecticut on Jan. 26 granted an insurer's unopposed motion to withdraw its claim asking the court to enjoin an arbitration with a reinsurer (American United Life Insurance Company v. Travelers Indemnity Company, et al., No. 14-cv-01339, D. Conn.).

Mealey's Insurance - District Court Properly Dismissed Insured From Bad Faith Suit, Panel Rules

ATLANTA - A federal district court did not err in dismissing an insured from an insurance bad faith declaratory relief lawsuit because an insurer failed to show that she had any bad faith claims against the insurer, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Jan. 26 in a per curiam opinion (GEICO...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Awards Partial Fees, Costs, Prejudgment Interest To Insured In Coverage Suit

SEATTLE - An insured is entitled to partial fees, costs and prejudgment interest in a coverage dispute arising from earth movement damage, a Washington federal judge held Jan. 26, granting in part and denying in part the insured's motion (MKB Constructors v. American Zurich Insurance Co., No. 13...

Mealey's Insurance - Excess Insurer Prejudiced By Insufficient Notice To Broker, 5th Circuit Affirms

NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 27 found that an insured's notice of a slip-and-fall claim to a broker did not satisfy an excess policy's notice requirements and that the excess insurer was prejudiced as a result, affirming a lower federal court's ruling in favor...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Government's Evidence Supported Guilty Verdict In Health Care Fraud Suit

DETROIT - A federal judge in Michigan on Jan. 27 denied a defendant's motion for acquittal and new trial, ruling that the government presented sufficient evidence to support the jury's finding that the man conspired to commit health care fraud (United States of America v. Vinod Patel, No. 11...

Mealey's Insurance - Louisiana Federal Judge Stays Contamination Suit Until Underlying Case Is Resolved

BATON ROUGE, La. - A Louisiana federal judge on Jan. 23 stayed an insurer's suit seeking a coverage declaration for wastewater dumping that resulted in contamination of a city sewer system (Endurance Specialty Insurance Co. v. City of Baton Rouge/Parish of East Baton Rouge, et al., No. 14-624, M...