LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Federal Judge: Fact Issues Exist As To Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims

OKLAHOMA CITY - An Oklahoma federal judge on Aug. 16 found that a genuine dispute of material fact precludes summary judgment in favor of a homeowners insurer on insureds' claims for breach of contract and bad faith in a dispute over coverage for tornado damage, denying the insurer's motion for summary judgment in part (Nathaniel Neill, et al. v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., et al., No. 13-627, W.D. Okla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 108368).

Mealey's Insurance - Assigned Claims Were` Released By Assignors, Judge Says In Fiduciary Liability Suit

JACKSON, Miss. - A Mississippi federal judge held Aug. 16 that assigned claims against a fiduciary liability insurer were released by the assignors in a confidential settlement agreement and release, granting the insurer's motion to dismiss a breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit (Vincent Sealey v. Beazley Insurance Co. Inc., et al., No. 15-768, S.D. Miss.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 108340).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 9th Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of NuBone California Class Action

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 16 affirmed dismissal of a NuBone bone putty class action complaint, saying the plaintiff failed to prove there was a contract between him and manufacturer Globus Medical Inc. and negligence per se is not a recognized independent claim under California law (Eugene A. DeBons, et al. v. Globus Medical, Inc., No. 14-56455, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15057).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 9th Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of NuBone California Class Action

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 16 affirmed dismissal of a NuBone bone putty class action complaint, saying the plaintiff failed to prove there was a contract between him and manufacturer Globus Medical Inc. and negligence per se is not a recognized independent claim under California law (Eugene A. DeBons, et al. v. Globus Medical, Inc., No. 14-56455, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15057).

Mealey's Insurance - Federal Judge Finds Personal Jurisdiction Over Insurance Defects Coverage Dispute

MOBILE, Ala. - An insured failed to demonstrate that an Alabama federal court does not have personal jurisdiction to hear a dispute regarding insurance coverage between the insured and its two insurers over construction defect claims, an Alabama federal judge ruled Aug. 12 (Crum & Forster Specialty Insurance Co., et al. v. ARD Contracting Inc., No. 16-0185, S.D. Ala.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106891).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Insured Did Not Show That Adjusters Violated Insurance Code

SHERMAN, Texas - A claims adjuster and adjusting company were improperly joined in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit because an insured failed to provide any fact to show that those defendants' actions were in violation of the Texas Insurance Code, a federal judge in Texas ruled Aug. 8 in denying the insured's motion to remand (Lillian Elizondo v. Metropolitan Lloyds Insurance Co. of Texas, et al., No. 16-306, E.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 103878).

Mealey's Insurance - New Jersey Panel Allows Claims Related To Contamination That Predate Sale Of Company

TRENTON, N.J. - A company successor is entitled to allege claims for breach of contract and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing as long as those claims pertain to coverage for environmental contamination that predated the successor's acquisition of the insured's company, the Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court said Aug. 4 (Haskell Properties LLC v. The American Insurance Co., et al., No. A-1452-14T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2016 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1836).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 8th Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment In Wrongful Death Suit

ST. LOUIS - An Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 5 affirmed summary judgment in a suit where a contractor was electrocuted after stepping out of a changing area on an oil rig because the companies responsible for hiring the supervisor were not liable for the supervisor's negligence because he was under contract (Margo Kronberg v. Oasis Petroleum North America LLC, et al., No. 15-1617, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 14384).

Mealey's Insurance - Bad Faith Claims Not Filed Within Statute Of Limitations, Judge Rules

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge in the District of Columbia on Aug, 4 granted an insurer's motion for judgment on the pleadings in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that the insureds' claims were filed after the mandatory two-year statute of limitations and were not subject to the discovery rule (Christopher Azoroh, et al. v. Automobile Insurance Co. of Hartford, Conn., No. 14-1695, D. D.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 102141).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer Had Reasonable Basis For Denial Of Life Insurance Benefits, Judge Rules

MILWAUKEE - A federal judge in Wisconsin on Aug. 3 granted an insurer's motion for partial judgment on the pleadings in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that the insurer had a reasonable basis for denying the insured's claim for life insurance benefits (Lowanda Smith v. United of Omaha Life Insurance, No. 15-1344, E.D. Wis.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 101726).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Motion To Dismiss Partially Granted, Partially Denied In Data Breach Class Suit

PORTLAND, Ore. - A class of consumers suing a health care benefits provider over a data breach must clarify and replead several fraud-based and contract-based claims if they wish to proceed with them, an Oregon federal judge ruled Aug. 1, granting in part and denying in part a motion to partially dismiss the suit (In Re: Premera Blue Cross Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 15-2633, D. Ore.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 100198).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 2nd Circuit Affirms $400M Award, Disregards Annulment By Mexican Court

NEW YORK - Despite an annulment ruling in a Mexican court, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 2 affirmed a district court's decision to confirm a $400 million award issued in favor of a Mexican corporation in a dispute over underlying contracts for the construction of offshore platforms (Corporacion Mexicana De Mantenimiento Intergral, S. De R.L. De C.V. v. Pemex-Exploracion Y, No. 13-4022, 2nd Cir.).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - 9th Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of UCL Claim In Dispute Over Polysilicon

SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 29 affirmed the dismissal of claims for violation of California's unfair competition (UCL) in relation to a contract for the supply of polysilicon based on forum non conveniens (Adema Technologies Inc., et al. v. Wacker Chemical Corp., et al., No. 14-16618, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13742).

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer Had No Right To Remove Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Suit, Judge Says

COLUMBIA, S.C. - An insurer that interpleaded itself into a construction defects lawsuit involving its insureds had no right to remove the case to federal court, a South Carolina federal judge ruled July 28, remanding the case to state court to resolve remaining counterclaims against the insurer for breach of contract and bad faith (The Gates at Williams-Brice Condominium Association and Katherine Swinson v. Lexington Insurance Co., No. 16-01001, D. S.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98599).

Mealey's Insurance - Faulty Work Exclusion Bars Coverage For Insured's Stone Flooring Error, Panel Finds

LOS ANGELES - Damage to an insured's mixed-use complex caused by subcontractors' faulty stone flooring work is precluded under a defective workmanship exclusion, a California appeals panel held July 28, affirming summary judgment to seven insurers on breach of contract, bad faith and fraud claims (Olympic and Georgia Partners LLC v. Arch Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. B264647, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 2; 2016 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5559).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Finds Subrogated Insurers' Breach Of Contract Claim Is Time-Barred

TULSA, Okla. - Subrogated insurers failed to assert their breach of contract claim before the expiration of a five-year statute of limitations, which began running upon completion of construction, an Oklahoma federal judge ruled July 28, granting in part summary judgment to a general contractor (Lexington Insurance Co., et al. v. Newbern Fabricating, Inc. and Baucom Concrete Construction, Inc., No. 14-0610, N.D. Okla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 98595).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - 9th Circuit Affirms Award Against Cabela's For Breach Of Contract

SEATTLE - The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on July 27 affirmed a district court's award of damages to the owner of a commercial property that was sold to a bank, with the exception of a portion that was granted to a bank in a bankruptcy settlement, finding that a retailer breached the underlying agreement by building another store within a restricted area (Cabela's Wholesale Inc. v. Hawks Prairie Investment LLC, No. 14-35157, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13683).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Federal Circuit: Patent License Counterclaim Not Subject To Arbitration

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A California federal judge did not err in concluding that counterclaims of breach of contract premised upon a purported license to use a disputed patent are not subject to arbitration, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 26 (Verinata Health Inc., et al. v. Ariosa Diagnostics Inc., No. 15-1970, Fed. Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13557).

Mealey's Insurance - Insured Won't Present Evidence, Testimony In Making Bad Faith Claim, Judge Rules

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - A federal judge in Mississippi on July 18 granted three motions in limine filed by an insurer in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, precluding an insured from presenting evidence, damages testimony and other testimony to show that the insurer acted in bad faith in conducting an investigation into a claim for coverage under a commercial property insurance policy (JCKP LLC v. Berkley Regional Specialty Insurance Co, et al., No. 14-0117, S.D. Miss.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93049).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Rejects Claim That Insured Failed To Timely Submit Paperwork To Port Plan

SAN FRANCISCO - Dismissal of a life insurance policy beneficiary's breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit against an insurer is not proper because the beneficiary has shown that his deceased wife timely completed all necessary paperwork and submitted to her employer as administrator of the policy to port her group life insurance policy into an individual policy, a federal judge in California ruled July 20 (Kent Graham v. Standard Insurance Co., No. 16-3407, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 94871).

Mealey's Banking & Finance - Judge Finds HPA Claims Against Nationstar Are Not Preempted, Refuses To Dismiss

PHILADELPHIA - After finding that a borrower's claims for violation of the Homeowners Protection Act (HPA) were not preempted and that she sufficiently pleaded her claims for breach of contract and unjust enrichment in relation to her private mortgage insurance (PMI), a Pennsylvania federal judge on July 20 denied a loan servicer's motion to dismiss the complaint (Sue Song, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated v. Nationstar Mortgage Holdings Inc., No. 16-006, E.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 94362).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Insurer Did Not Act In Bad Faith In Denying Claim For Stolen Skid Loader

SALT LAKE CITY - An insurer did not act in bad faith in denying coverage for an allegedly stolen skid loader because ample evidence exists to support the insurer's denial of the claim, a federal judge in Utah ruled July 18 in an insurance bad faith and breach of contract lawsuit (Naser Awadh, et al. v. Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-0145, D. Utah; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93369).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: District Court Lacks Subject Matter Jurisdiction Over Bad Faith Suit

NEWARK, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on July 19 granted an insurer's motion to dismiss in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit, ruling that an insured failed to show that the district court has subject matter jurisdiction over the action (Florence Hanson v. Allstate New Jersey Insurance Co., No. 15-8882, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 93444).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 2nd Circuit Says Court Did Not Err In Decertifying Class Of Borrowers

NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 15 affirmed a district court's decision to decertify a class of claimants that asserted a claim for breach of contract against lenders in relation to alleged late fees, finding that it had the authority to decertify the class after a jury verdict and that the plaintiffs failed to meet federal requirements for certifying a class (Joseph Mazzei, et al. v. The Money Store, et al., No. 15-2054, 2nd Cir.; 2016 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12994).

Mealey's Insurance - Insured Not Entitled To Consequential Damages In Bad Faith Suit, Judge Rules

LAS VEGAS - A federal judge in Nevada on July 14 granted an insurer's motion to amend judgment in an insurance bad faith and breach of contract suit, ruling that an insured failed to show that he was entitled to consequential damages (Andrew Cordova v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-1111, D. Nev.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143728).