ST. LOUIS - An insured's payments for mold remediation are not covered under commercial general liability insurance policies because its legal obligation to remediate the mold did not spring from "liability imposed by law," the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Feb. 24 (Busch Properties Inc. v. National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., No. 14-3699, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3174).
ST. LOUIS - In a class action, insureds failed to assert bad faith claims against their homeowners insurer for denied coverage and refusal to participate in appraisal of damages from a pipe burst, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Feb. 24 (Michael Adams and Colleen Adams, on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co., No. 15-1475, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3181).
DENVER - An insurer is not entitled to summary judgment in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit because the factual allegations provided in the underlying complaint "do not fall solely and exclusively within the boundaries of the policy exclusions," a federal judge in Colorado ruled Feb. 22 (Weldesamuel Gebremedhin, et al. v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-2813, D. Colo.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21059).
SEATTLE - A federal judge in Washington on Feb. 23 denied an insurer's motion for summary judgment in an insurance bad faith lawsuit, ruling that the motion depends on a vacated order denying coverage (Larson Motors Inc. v. Phoenix Insurance Co., No. 15-85, W.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21995).
PASADENA, Calif. - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 23 affirmed a lower federal court's post-trial rulings in a breach of contract and bad faith dispute arising from a 2008 wildfire (Craig Milhouse, et al. v. Travelers Commercial Insurance Co., Nos. 13-56959 and 13-57029, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3145).
NEW YORK - Chapter 11 debtor Rapid-American Corp. and the three insurers that have not settled their coverage disputes with the debtor on Feb. 22 agreed to a briefing schedule and hearing date for Rapid-American's motions for summary judgment on the insurers' obligation to pay for asbestos personal injury claims (Rapid-American Corporation, et al. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, et al., No. 15-01095, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
MASON, Mich. - A Michigan judge on Feb. 19 approved the settlement of certain health care provider claims against an insurer in rehabilitation (Patrick McPharlin, Director of the Department of Insurance and Financial Services v. Affirmative Insurance Company of Michigan, No. 15-898-CR, Mich. Cir., Ingham Co.).
RICHMOND, Va. - A real estate developer's untimely notice of a claim over alleged defective soil settlement issues prejudiced its commercial general liability insurers, the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Feb. 23, upholding summary judgment to the insurers (St. Paul Mercury Insurance Co. and National Surety Corp. v. THF Clarksburg Development Two, LLC, et al., No. 15-1453, 4th Cir.).
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - A federal judge in Michigan on Feb. 22 granted State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.'s motion to dismiss counterclaims asserted by defendants accused of submitting fraudulent bills, ruling that they failed to sufficiently state claims that the insurer was engaged in a scheme to fraudulently deny and delay payments on the claims (State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company v. Louis Radden, D.O., et al., No. 14-cv-13299, E.D. Mich.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20717).
NEW YORK - Amtrak on Feb. 18 responded to its insurers' opposition to its appeal for the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower court's ruling that limited it to no more than $125 million in insurance coverage for what it alleges is more than $1 billion in estimated Superstorm Sandy damage (National Railroad Passenger Corp. v. Arch Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-2358, 2nd Cir.).
NEW YORK - A judge for the U.S. Court of International Trade on Feb. 18 granted the federal government's motion to stay a number of cases against an insurer in liquidation, where the government seeks allegedly unpaid supplemental antidumping duties covered by bonds issued by the insolvent insurer (United States v. Lincoln General Insurance Company, Nos. 13-cv-00084, 13-cv-00085, 13-cv-00086, 13-cv-00087, 13-cv-00088, 13-cv-00089, 13-cv-00090, 13-cv-00091 and 13-cv-00092, U.S. Internat. Trade).
PENDLETON, Ore. - Insureds have provided sufficient evidence showing that their homeowners insurance provider acted in bad faith in investigating their claims made after a fire damaged their home and personal property, a federal judge in Oregon ruled Feb. 19 in denying the insurer's motion for judgment as a matter of law or, in the alternative, for a new trial (Travis and Michelle Vail v. Country Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-2029, D. Ore.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20140).
McALLEN, Texas - A federal judge in Texas on Feb. 22 granted an insurer's motion for summary judgment in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that insureds have failed to raise an issue of material fact with regard to their breach of contract claim and thus cannot state a claim for relief with regard to their extracontractual claims (Mark Dizdar, et al. v. State Farm Lloyds, et al., No. 14-664, S.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20871).
ATLANTA - A federal district court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of an insurer in an insurance bad faith lawsuit because the court's analysis focused on the wrong party, which contradicts Florida law, an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Feb. 19 (Joshua Moore v. GEICO General Insurance Co., No. 14-13356, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 2874).
SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Feb. 18 denied an insurer's motion to strike in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that the insurer has failed to state any viable reason for doing so (Mojdeh Hariri-Vijeh v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., No. 15-3195, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20627).
PHOENIX - A federal judge in Arizona on Feb. 17 granted a reinsurer's motion to confirm an arbitration award, noting that an alleged miscalculation of the award amount could not be gleaned from the arbitration panel's final award, which did not include the panel's computational reasoning (Scottsdale Insurance Company v. John Deere Insurance Company, No. 15-cv-00671, D. Ariz.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18986).
MADISON, Wis. - A federal judge in Wisconsin on Feb. 17 told the parties to a series of reinsurance agreements that their asbestos-related billing dispute is not for the court to hear but should be arbitrated (Employers Insurance of Wausau v. Continental Casualty Company, No. 15-cv-00226, W.D. Wis.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18850).
LAKELAND, Fla. - A Florida appeals panel on Feb. 19 held that a lower court erred in ordering an insurer to pay for its insureds' subsurface repairs before the insureds entered into a contract for those repairs and in awarding the insureds prejudgment interest, reversing in part the court's $192,207.20 judgment against the insurer in a sinkhole coverage dispute (Citizens Property Insurance Corporation v. Ariety Amat, et al., No. 2D14-4274, Fla. App., 2nd Dist.; 2016 Fla. App. LEXIS 2412).
HOUSTON - A commercial property insurance policy's water exclusion endorsement precludes coverage for water damage from a failed pipe that does not qualify as personal property, a Texas federal judge ruled Feb. 19, granting summary judgment to an insurer on breach of contract and bad faith claims (Praetorian Insurance Co. v. Arabia Shrine Center Houston, No. 14-3281, S.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20186).
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - A majority of the Tennessee Court of Appeals on Feb. 17 found that a lower court properly enforced a homeowners insurance policy's appraisal provision, affirming that insureds and their insurer are bound to a $132,793.95 appraisal award in a dispute over coverage for storm damage to the insureds' dwelling and other structures (Joseph C. Thomas, et al. v. The Standard Fire Insurance Co., et al., No. E2015-01224-COA-R3-CV, Tenn. App.).
NEW ORLEANS - The Louisiana Supreme Court denied insureds' writ application challenging an appeals court's ruling that there is no primary or excess fiduciary liability or directors and officers liability insurance coverage for an underlying lawsuit spawned by a federal investigation of insureds' employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs), according to a Feb. 19 news release (Woody D. Bilyeu, et al. v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, Pa, et al., No. 2015-C -2277, La. Sup.).
CONCORD, N.H. - Parties to a $2 million reinsurance dispute told a federal court in New Hampshire on Feb. 16 that they are ending their case (TIG Insurance Company v. EIFlow Insurance Limited, No. 14-cv-00459, D. N.H.).
INDIANAPOLIS - An insured and one of its insurers involved in a coverage dispute arising out of environmental contamination claims on Feb. 19 filed a joint motion to dismiss in Indiana federal court after reaching a confidential settlement (Eli Lilly and Co., et al., v. Arch Insurance Co., et al., No. 13-1770, S.D. Ind.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A chiropractor who pleaded guilty to obstructing a health care insurance fraud investigation was sentenced Feb. 16 by a federal judge in the District of Columbia to seven months in prison and five months of home confinement and ordered to pay $48,450 in restitution to the District of Columbia Medicaid program, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia (United States of America v. Rehman Mirza D.C., No. 15cr62, D. D.C.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A shareholder filed a securities class action complaint in California federal court on Feb. 18, seeking to halt a company's proposed merger until the details of the merger plan are disseminated to stockholders as a result of the defendants' alleged misstatements made in the merger plan documents (Brent Talbert v. Mattson Technology Inc., et al., No. 16-0811, N.D. Calif.).