LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Insurance - Judge: No Directors, Officers Liability Coverage Owed For Promissory Note Dispute

HARTFORD, Conn. - A Connecticut federal judge on Feb. 28 dismissed breach of contract, unjust enrichment, conversion and declaratory judgment claims against a directors and officers liability insurer, finding that the insured's failure to provide the insurer with timely notice of an underlying claim negated coverage (J. Graham Zahoruiko v. Federal Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-474, D. Conn., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28204).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 4th Circuit Upholds Denial Of Forced Labor Claims By Kenyan Domestic Help

RICHMOND, Va. - A woman from Kenya who worked in Virginia for a family from Saudi Arabia and alleges that she was denied the full wages and forced to work more hours than the wages and hours that were stated in her employment contract failed to show that her situation constituted forced labor as defined by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA), a Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled March 2 (Winfred Muchira v. Halah Al-Rawaf, et al., No. 15-2198, 4th Cir., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 3782).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Insured Failed To Show That Insurer's Dispute Of Claim Was In Bad Faith

JACKSON, Miss. - Dismissal of a bad faith claim and request for punitive damages in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit is proper because an insurer never denied an insured's claim for uninsured motorist benefits, and there was no evidence that it acted in bad faith in disputing the claim, a federal judge in Mississippi ruled Feb. 27 in granting the insurer's motion for partial summary judgment (Jacob Ladner v. GEICO Indemnity Co., No. 16-0197, S.D. Miss., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27158).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Dismisses Breach Of Covenant Of Good Faith Claim As Redundant

NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Feb. 27 dismissed an alleged insured's breach of the covenant of good faith claim because it is redundant to a breach of contract claim (JD2 Environmental, Inc. v. Endurance American Insurance Company, No. 14-cv-8888, S.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26977).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Dismisses Declaratory Judgment Claim In Asbestos Reinsurance Case

UTICA, N.Y. - A federal judge in New York on Feb. 24 dismissed a reinsured's claim for declaratory judgment regarding asbestos reinsurance obligations because the claim is duplicative of the relief sought in the reinsured's breach of contract claim (Utica Mutual Insurance Company v. Fireman's Fund Insurance Company, No. 09-cv-00853, N.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Dismisses Breach Of Covenant Of Good Faith Claim As Redundant

NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Feb. 27 dismissed an alleged insured's breach of the covenant of good faith claim because it is redundant to a breach of contract claim (JD2 Environmental, Inc. v. Endurance American Insurance Company, No. 14-cv-8888, S.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26977).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Orders Arbitration Of Non-English-Speaking Uber Driver Class's Breach Claims

NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Feb. 23 stayed breach of contract class claims filed by Uber Technologies Inc. drivers who speak little or no English, finding that the parties' arbitration agreement mandating individual arbitration is enforceable (Saizhang Guan, et al. v. Uber Technologies, Inc., No. 16-598, E.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25840).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Broker Is Liable For Breach Of Implied Contract; Damages Are In Dispute

DALLAS - A Texas federal judge on Feb. 24 held that there is no genuine dispute of material fact regarding whether an insurance broker breached its implied contract to secure a total of $975,000 worth of federal flood insurance coverage for an insured, further finding that the amount of potential damages that the breach caused is in dispute (Hudson Henley v. Love Insurance Group, LLC, No. 15-3078, N.D. Texas, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26244).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Judge Stays Discovery In Professional Liability Insurance Coverage Dispute

TULSA, Okla. - A federal judge in Oklahoma on Feb. 21 granted a professional liability insurer's motion to stay discovery pending resolution of its motion for summary judgment in a dispute over coverage for an underlying breach of contract suit brought against the insured by a former business partner (Doug Schwegman, d/b/a Schwegman Insurance and Financial Services v. Continental Casualty Co., No. 16-0730, N.D. Okla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23780).

Mealey's Insurance - Federal Judge Stays Discovery In Professional Liability Insurance Coverage Dispute

TULSA, Okla. - A federal judge in Oklahoma on Feb. 21 granted a professional liability insurer's motion to stay discovery pending resolution of its motion for summary judgment in a dispute over coverage for an underlying breach of contract suit brought against the insured by a former business partner (Doug Schwegman, d/b/a Schwegman Insurance and Financial Services v. Continental Casualty Co., No. 16-0730, N.D. Okla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23780).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Class Suit Over Insurance Payments For Diminished Values Is Kept In Federal Court

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia federal judge on Feb. 22 denied a motion to remand a class complaint accusing an insurer of breach of contract for failing to pay its insureds for the diminished value of their vehicles, finding that the amount in controversy exceeds $5 million (Evna T. LaVelle, et al. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, No. 16-1082, D. D.C., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24198).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Judge Remands Implied Insurance Contract Claims As Outside ERISA

NEWARK, N.J. - A neurosurgical specialist's claim seeking payment for out-of-network care is based on an implied contract providing a separate and independent basis for recovery and thus is not preempted by ERISA, a federal judge in New Jersey held Feb. 17 in remanding the case (North Jersey Brain & Spine Center v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-1544, D. N.J., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22710).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Arkansas Top Court Upholds Certification Of City Employee Class In Suit Over Raises

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - The Arkansas Supreme Court on Feb. 16 upheld a circuit court's certification of a class of city workers suing for breach of contract after mandated raises ended (City of Conway, an Arkansas Municipality v. Richard Shumate, Jr., et al., No. CV-16-284, Ark. Sup., 2017 Ark. LEXIS 41).

Mealey's Health Law - Claims In Bad Faith Suit Not Subject To ERISA Preemption, Magistrate Rules

NEWARK, N.J. - Remand of an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit to state court is proper because a third-party's claims are not preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), a federal magistrate judge in New Jersey ruled Feb. 17 (North Jersey Brain & Spine Center v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-1544, D. N.J., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22710).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Arkansas Top Court Upholds Certification Of City Employee Class In Suit Over Raises

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - The Arkansas Supreme Court on Feb. 16 upheld a circuit court's certification of a class of city workers suing for breach of contract after mandated raises ended (City of Conway, an Arkansas Municipality v. Richard Shumate, Jr., et al., No. CV-16-284, Ark. Sup., 2017 Ark. LEXIS 41).

Mealey's Insurance - Claims In Bad Faith Suit Not Subject To ERISA Preemption, Magistrate Rules

NEWARK, N.J. - Remand of an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit to state court is proper because a third-party's claims are not preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), a federal magistrate judge in New Jersey ruled Feb. 17 (North Jersey Brain & Spine Center v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-1544, D. N.J., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22710).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Approves Reinsurance Commutation Agreement For Insolvent Insurer

CHICAGO - An Illinois judge on Feb. 16 approved the commutation of certain reinsurance contracts covering third-party construction defect claims in an agreement between a reinsurer and an insolvent insurer (In the matter of the liquidation of Legion Indemnity Co., No. 02 CH 06695, Ill. Cir., Cook Co., Chanc. Div.).

Mealey's Insurance - 10th Circuit Panel Says No Breach Of Contract For Denying Claim For Damages

DENVER - Because an insured failed to establish that it suffered water damage to "covered property" at a renovation project under a builders risk policy, the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 16 affirmed a Colorado federal judge's finding that the insurer properly denied coverage and did not breach its contract (Gerald H. Phipps, Inc. d/b/a GH Phipps Construction Co. v. Travelers Property Casualty Company of America, No. 16-1039, 10th Cir.).

Mealey's Insurance - Insured's Breach Of Contract Is Barred By 2-Year Statute Of Limitations, Judge Says

DENVER - A two-year statute of limitations precludes an insured's breach of contract claim against its insurer for denied coverage for property damage to commercial properties, a Colorado federal judge ruled Feb. 13 (The Pinewood Townhome Association Inc. v. Auto-Owners Insurance Co., No. 15-01604, D. Colo.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19999).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Data Breach Class Claims Against Premera Mostly Survive Dismissal Motion

PORTLAND, Ore. - Although an Oregon federal judge on Feb. 9 found that some fraud and contract-based claims related to a 2014 data breach experienced by Premera Blue Cross merited dismissal, he held that the plaintiffs cured some previous deficiencies and concluded that their claims are not preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) (In Re: Premera Blue Cross Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 3:15-md-02633, D. Ore., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18322).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge: Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims Not Filed Within Limitations Period

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - An insured's claims for insurance breach of contract and bad faith against his insurer were not timely filed within the contractual limitations period and the insured failed to show that the insurer engaged in any outrageous conduct to support a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress in failing to provide coverage under a comprehensive long-term care policy, a federal judge in California ruled Feb. 9 in granting the insurer's motion to dismiss (Donald Mann v. Mutual of Omaha, et al., No. 16-2560, E.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18732).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge Bars Testimony On Education Lead-Generation Industry's Customs, Practices

TAMPA, Fla. - A lawyer is not qualified to opine on the educational lead-generation industry's customs and practices because the lawyer failed to explain why her experience is a sufficient basis for her opinion and how her experience is reliably applied to the facts of a trade secrets and breach of contract case, a Florida federal judge ruled Feb. 13, excluding the testimony (Connectus LLC v. Ampush Media Inc., et al., No. 15-2778, M.D. Fla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19829).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Judge: ERISA Preempts Provider's Contract Claim Against Insurer

GREENSBORO, N.C. - A substance abuse provider's claims that an insurer failed to pay for medically necessary treatments are preempted by ERISA or fail to state a claim, a federal judge in North Carolina held Feb. 9 (Bobby P. Kearney, M.D., PLLC, v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, et al., No. 16-191, M.D. N.C., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18428).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Data Breach Class Claims Against Premera Mostly Survive Dismissal Motion

PORTLAND, Ore. - Although an Oregon federal judge on Feb. 9 found that some fraud and contract-based claims related to a 2014 data breach experienced by Premera Blue Cross merited dismissal, he held that the plaintiffs cured some previous deficiencies and concluded that their claims are not preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) (In Re: Premera Blue Cross Customer Data Security Breach Litigation, No. 3:15-md-02633, D. Ore., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18322).

Mealey's Insurance - Washington Federal Judge: Insurers Breached Duty To Defend In Environmental Suit

SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge on Feb. 10 granted an insured's motion for summary judgment after determining that three insurers breached their contracts of insurance by refusing to defend the insured against state and federal agency claims arising out of environmental contamination because the claims are potentially covered under the policies at issue (King County v. Travelers Indemnity Co., et al., No. C14-1957, W.D. Wash., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19397).