Insurance Law

Recent Posts

The Unfortunate Event Test Rules – Can’t Aggregate Three Accidents into One
Posted on 6 Oct 2015 by Barry Zalma

Insurance policy limits of liability can cause disputes between insurers and their insureds so that if there is one accident rather than three (even though the result from a single continuous and repeated exposure to the same general conditions) can limit... Read More

Automobile Policy’s Exclusion for Bodily Injury to “an Insured” Held Unenforceable and Against Public Policy With Regard to Injuries Sustained by a Non-Relative of the Named Insured
Posted on 29 Jan 2015 by Troutman Sanders

Mercury Cas. Co. v. Chu , 229 Cal. App. 4th 1432 (2014), [ enhanced version available to subscribers ]. In Mercury , the California Court of Appeal held that an exclusion in an automobile policy for “bodily injury to an insured”... Read More

An Apple Can Never Be An Orange – Regular Use Exclusion Effective
Posted on 30 Oct 2012 by Barry Zalma

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant Erie Insurance Exchange ("Erie") appealed to the Superior Court of Pennsylvania from the grant of summary judgment in favor of Patrick and Daryl Rother ("Mother") in a declaratory judgment... Read More

Lawyer Thinking About Work, On the Way To The Office, Is Not Working
Posted on 10 Jun 2015 by Randy J. Maniloff

Coverage Opinions Gets A Mention In The Wall Street Journal Law Blog Cases involving coverage under automobile policies do not usually get a lot of play in Coverage Opinions (what is “use of an auto” cases are sometimes an exception;... Read More

Recovery from General Liability Carrier Held to Reduce Underinsured Motorist Coverage and to Eliminate Any Obligation on the Part of the Injured Party’s Automobile Carrier
Posted on 9 Jun 2015 by Troutman Sanders

Elliott v. Geico Indem. Co. , 231 Cal. App. 4th 789 (2014), [ enhanced version available to subscribers ]. In Elliott , the California Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s ruling that a carrier’s underinsured motorist... Read More

A Horse is a Horse, of Course – A Horse is Not “Mobile Equipment”
Posted on 19 Aug 2015 by Barry Zalma

As Mr. Ed once said, cogently, “a horse is a horse, of course,” and it is nothing more. Although insurance terms and conditions can be interpreted to cover a multiple of sins, it cannot change the obvious. FACTS In the fall of 2006,... Read More

No Coverage For Participant In Drag Race
Posted on 13 Sep 2012 by Barry Zalma

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant "Chutzpah" - Filing Suit for Speed Contest Injuries The danger of operating a motor vehicle in a race on city streets is obvious and well known. No insurer writes an insurance policy against injuries... Read More

Crime Doesn’t Pay – Running Over Victim in the Course of a Robbery Is not an Accident
Posted on 12 Aug 2015 by Barry Zalma

Insurance, as I have said often, only insures against fortuitous events. If the event is either contingent or unknown it can be insured against. In Smith v. Patton , Slip Copy, 2015 Wisc. App. LEXIS 547 (Wis.App., July 2015), [subscribers can access... Read More

The Right to Stack UM Coverage Can Be Waived
Posted on 27 Aug 2012 by Barry Zalma

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant People who insure their cars in Pennsylvania have the right to stack coverages for uninsured motorist ("UM") or underinsured motorist ("UIM") coverages if they insure more than one vehicle... Read More

Never Bring a New Theory to Court of Appeal – Although Benefits Needed There Can Be No Insurance Coverage Without a Contract
Posted on 29 Sep 2015 by Barry Zalma

Shawn Halvorson (Halvorson) challenged the summary-judgment dismissal of his declaratory-judgment action involving a dispute over insurance coverage. In Halvorson v. From, 2015 Minn. App. Unpub. LEXIS 809 (Minn.App.), [subscribers can access an enhanced... Read More

It is Important to Honor Substance Over Form
Posted on 30 Apr 2012 by Barry Zalma

By Barry Zalma, Attorney and Consultant In the Maryland motor vehicle insurance law, the phrase "first named insured" makes what the Court of Appeals of Maryland calls "a cameo appearance" in Kelly Swartzbaugh, et al. v. Encompass... Read More

Linsurance Coverage: The Issue That Everyone Is Talking About – “Use of an Auto” Exclusion the Most Popular Issue of the Year
Posted on 23 Feb 2012 by Randy J. Maniloff

Randy J. Maniloff, White and Williams, LLP I own a car. And there is little doubt in my mind about when I'm using it. I get in. Put my drink in the cup holder. Turn around and marvel at the number of Cheerios in the car seat. Turn the key. Put... Read More

“Warriors . . . come out to playyyyyy” (or "What Are The Insurance Implications Of Driving Your Mom's Car To A Street Fight?")
Posted on 7 May 2015 by Peter J. Gallagher

By Peter J. Gallagher ( @pjsgallagher ) One of the most ridiculously entertaining movies of the late-1970’s/early-1980’s was “ The Warriors .” You need to watch it to fully appreciate how ridiculous and entertaining it was... Read More

Come On. Who Doesn’t Love A Good “Use Of An Auto” Case
Posted on 18 Jun 2015 by Randy J. Maniloff

Cases involving whether injury arises out of the “use of an auto” – for purposes of triggering an Auto or UM/UIM policy or the applicability of a CGL or homeowner’s policy’s auto exclusion -- have a way of involving strange... Read More

Autonomous Vehicles – Where in the (Insurance) World Will They Go?
Posted on 10 Nov 2015 by Dennis Cusack

By Dennis Cusack and David Smith Self-driving cars are coming. In fact, Tesla Model S owners woke up on the morning of October 15, 2015 to discover that a software download to the cars has made them capable of steering and changing lanes at high speed... Read More