LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
    Agent Not Liable In Hurricane Irene Coverage Row, Court Says

    Intermarket Insurance Agency Inc. cannot be held liable for negligence for allegedly failing to secure sufficient insurance for a textile wholesaler prior to Hurricane Irene, leaving it without coverage for losses due to the storm, a New York state judge has ruled, finding that the agent had no duty to advise the policyholder to acquire additional coverage.

    Fed. Circ. Upholds Aetna's Win In Health Data Patent Suit

    The Federal Circuit upheld on Wednesday a lower court’s invalidation of patents asserted against Aetna Inc., letting stand a decision that found the health insurance company didn't infringe because the health information technology developer's patents were too abstract under the U.S. Supreme Court’s Alice test.

    Lincoln National Faces Class Suit Over Insurance Cost Hikes

    Lincoln National Corp. was slapped with a putative class action in Pennsylvania federal court on Tuesday alleging that it breached the terms of its life insurance policies by jacking up rates in an attempt to shift costs to its customers and force coverage cancellations.

    Insurer Freed From Fight Over Unfinished National Park Work

    A Montana federal judge on Wednesday ruled that The Phoenix Insurance Co. doesn't have to defend or indemnify a construction subcontractor in litigation over its failure to fulfill a contract to help repair a bridge in Glacier National Park, adopting a magistrate judge's recommendations.

    After 'Invasive' Data Bid, Anthem Customer Asks To Drop Claims

    A named plaintiff in litigation over Anthem’s 2015 data breach asked a California federal judge to toss his claims Tuesday, saying a request that he allow the replication of his computer’s files and data is too invasive, considering that entrusting the company with his personal information previously led to him suffering identity theft.

    Deals Rumor Mill: Chuck E. Cheese, Cosco, OneBeacon

    Private equity-owned Chuck E. Cheese could go public this year in an IPO valuing it at around $1 billion; Chinese state-owned Cosco is in talks to buy rival Orient in a deal worth more than $4 billion; and specialty insurer OneBeacon, worth around $1.6 billion, is up for grabs.

    PTAB Finds Claims In IV E-Commerce Patent Invalid

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board on Tuesday invalidated several claims in an Intellectual Ventures II LLC e-commerce patent, dealing a blow to the patent holding company in its East Texas lawsuit against a pair of insurance companies.

    Accrual Of Statutes Of Limitations In TX Bad Faith Claims

    Under Texas insurance law, provisions regarding accrual have been surprisingly ambiguous despite the Texas Supreme Court's instruction. For this reason, the Fifth Circuit's decision in De Jongh v. State Farm is important because it has provided critical clarity in determining how much time insureds have to file bad faith lawsuits, says Summer Frederick of Zelle LLP.

    It’s Time To Change The Law Firm Business Model

    Every year, statistics reveal very little change in the number of women and minorities in the ranks of partnership. So how do law firms change this painfully slow rate of progress? It takes more than adding a diversity policy or a women’s leadership program to the current law firm business model, says Lucia Chiocchio, co-chair of Cuddy & Feder LLP's telecommunications and land use, zoning & development groups.

    Mealey's Insurance - Plaintiff's Claims Are Preempted By ERISA, Illinois Federal Judge Says

    CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on Jan. 12 denied a plaintiff's motion to remand after determining that her state law claims arising out of the disclosure of medical records without consent are preempted by the Employment Retirement Income Security Act (Jane Doe v. Aetna Inc., et al., No. 16-8390, N.D. Ill.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4866).

    Mealey's Insurance - Judge Says Ruling That Document Was Privileged Was Not Clearly Erroneous

    SYRACUSE, N.Y. - A federal judge in New York on Jan. 13 denied a reinsurer's challenge to a magistrate judge's ruling, finding that the magistrate judge's finding that a certain document was privileged was not clearly erroneous (Utica Mutual Insurance Company v. Munich Reinsurance America, Inc., No. 12-cv-00196, and Munich Reinsurance America, Inc., v. Utica Mutual Insurance Company, No. 13-cv-00743, N.D. N.Y.).

    Mealey's Insurance - Judge Affirms Earlier Ruling That Fraud Scheme Netted $2.9M In Losses

    NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York, who was ordered by the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to provide more detailed findings on the intended loss of an insurance fraud scheme that involved the redistribution of drugs originally provided to HIV and AIDS patients, on Jan. 17 affirmed his earlier decision that the scheme resulted in $2.9 million in losses to Medicare, finding that a ledger found at the man's apartment detailed the prices and quantities of the drugs (United States of America v. Bladimir Rigo, No. 13 CR 897, S.D. N.Y.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 6228).

    9th Circ. Urged To Ax Tempur-Sealy's Class Action Coverage

    Hartford Fire Insurance Co. asked the Ninth Circuit on Tuesday to reverse a California federal judge's ruling that it must defend Tempur-Sealy International Inc. in a proposed class action alleging that the mattress company lied in marketing materials, arguing that the underlying complaint doesn't seek any damages covered by Hartford's policy.

    Southport, US Bank Accused In Asset Misappropriation Scheme

    The former owners of two insurance companies launched a lawsuit in Delaware Chancery Court on Tuesday accusing the companies' buyers of hatching a scheme to replace the companies’ assets with worthless investments that, with the aid of U.S. Bank NA, cost the sellers hundreds of millions of dollars.

    Chicago Condo Defect Suit Should Be Covered, 7th Circ. Told

    A slew of developers and contractors that worked on a Chicago condominium building urged the Seventh Circuit on Monday to uphold a lower court's ruling that Westfield Insurance Co. must defend them in construction defect litigation, asserting that the underlying suit alleges multiple forms of covered property damage.

    If Not Replaced, ACA Repeal Could Double Premiums: CBO

    With Congressional Republicans working toward repealing the Affordable Care Act, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said Monday that scrapping only parts of “Obamacare” could result in 32 million people losing health insurance and premiums doubling by 2026.

    Judge OKs Geico's Discovery Bid In Fraud Case

    A New Jersey federal judge on Tuesday ordered a group of outpatient care facilities sued by Geico over an alleged kickback scheme to explain why they can’t obtain requested discovery documents, which they claim were ruined after the government seized their computers, from their original sources.

    Sausage Co. Says Insurer Owes In Money-Transfer Scam

    Quality Sausage Co. and a subsidiary filed suit against Twin City Fire Insurance Co. in Texas federal court Friday, alleging that the insurer wrongfully denied coverage after a hacker tricked one of the unit’s employees into transferring $1 million out of a client’s bank account.

    Blue Shield Escapes TCPA Class Action Over Single Call

    A California federal judge last week gave Blue Shield a quick win in a proposed class action accusing the insurer of violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act based on a single recorded phone call about plan renewal, saying common sense concludes a purely informational call isn’t an ad.

    LifeLock Can't Revive False Ad Suit Coverage Bid

    A New York appellate court on Tuesday rejected identity theft protection company LifeLock Inc.'s bid to revive its suit seeking coverage from Lloyd's of London underwriters for defense costs in a civil suit and related class actions over purportedly misleading claims, holding that a pair of policy exclusions preclude coverage.

    The Implications Of Insureds' Illegal Conduct

    Insureds often operate in countries with increasingly tough laws against bribery and corruption, such as the U.K.'s Bribery Act 2010 and the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977. Insurers need to be aware of these laws' far reaching territorial applications, say Deepa Sutherland and Hernán Cipriotti of Zelle LLP.

    Amended Rule 37(e): 1 Year Later

    After a full year in effect, the amended Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e) has been tested in a variety of district courts. A sampling of these decisions reveal that courts seem to be adhering closely to the amended rule and ordering adverse inference instructions only where there was intent to deprive another party of access to relevant information, say Carrie Amezcua and Samantha Southall of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC.

    Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Negligent Misrepresentation Claims Barred By Quality Of Services Exclusion

    FORT MYERS, Fla. - A Florida federal judge on Jan. 13 entered judgment in favor of an insurer one day after finding that underlying negligent misrepresentation claims against its insured are "for or arising out of or resulting from" the failure of the insured's auction services to conform with a represented quality of performance contained in its advertising (Equipmentfacts LLC v. Beazley Insurance Co., Inc., No: 16-265, M.D. Fla.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4653).

    Mealey's Insurance - No Coverage Owed For Sewage Discharge, Louisiana Appeals Panel Determines

    BATON ROUGE, La. - The First Circuit Louisiana Court of Appeal on Jan. 11 affirmed a trial court's ruling that no coverage is afforded under an auto policy for the discharge of raw sewage into a home caused by a pumping system attached to the insured's truck because the policy excludes coverage for bodily injury, property damage and pollution costs caused by the operation of equipment permanently attached to a vehicle (Shenetta West, et al. v. Clean Rite Septic Tank Service LLC, et al., No. 2016 CA 0306, La. App., 1st Cir.; 2017 La. App. LEXIS 59).

    Mealey's Insurance - No Coverage Owed For Damages Caused By Sewage Backup, Iowa Panel Says

    DES MOINES, Iowa - A trial court did not err in granting an insurer's motion for summary judgment because the insured, seeking coverage for damages caused by a sewage backup in his home, cannot prove that he acted to his detriment when he relied on his insurance agent's representation that coverage would be afforded for the damages, the Iowa Court of Appeals said Jan. 11 (Carl Budny v. MemberSelect Insurance Co., No. 16-1189, Iowa App.; 2017 Iowa App. LEXIS 46).