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).
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.).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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.).
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.).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
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).
NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Feb. 8 dismissed an amended complaint filed by investors who alleged that a financial services firm and its CEO engaged in a scheme to manipulate prices at which certain futures contracts traded on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Global Platform (CME Globex), ruling that the investors failed to show that the alleged transactions took place on an American exchange as required pursuant to U.S. Supreme Court precedent in Morrison v. National Australia Bank, Ltd. (Myun-Uk Choi, et al. v. Tower Research Capital LLC, et al., No. 14-9912, S.D. N.Y., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18174).
SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on Feb. 7 refused to dismiss a hair product company's claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and intentional interference with contractual relations, finding that a retailer had notice that it was potentially selling unauthorized products online and that it showed that a valid contract exists (Unite Eurotherapy Inc. v. Walgreens Co., et al., No. 16-cv-01706, S.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18116).