• November 13, 2014

    Yacht Club's Sandy Damage Insurance Suit Wrecked

    A New Jersey federal judge on Thursday threw out a yacht club’s suit seeking to recover for damage allegedly caused by Superstorm Sandy, saying it refused to let Atlantic Specialty Insurance Co. inspect the property and questioning whether the club and its counsel filed the suit "in bad faith."

  • November 13, 2014

    AIG Had No Hope Of Private Lifeline, JPMorgan Banker Says

    JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s top investment banker testified on Thursday in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims that American International Group Inc. was a bad loan risk immediately prior to its 2008 federal bailout, effectively scaring off private investors, as a trial over allegedly onerous terms of the bailout deal continued.

  • November 13, 2014

    GrayRobinson Lures Ex-GC Of Fla. Insurance Regulator

    Steve Parton, former general counsel for the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, will be joining GrayRobinson PA as a shareholder in its Tallahasee, Florida, office, where he will set up a new insurance regulatory practice, the firm announced Thursday.

  • November 13, 2014

    GOP Sens. Tell Top EEOC Atty Wellness Suits Need A Checkup

    Senate Republicans on Thursday pressed the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's general counsel on recent lawsuits over employer wellness programs and criticized the agency for pursuing litigation in cases where no employee has complained of discrimination.

  • November 13, 2014

    Essex To Settle Suit Over $22M Oil Cleanup Bill

    Essex Insurance Co. reached a tentative settlement on Wednesday with the U.S. Department of Justice and other parties in a coverage dispute over $22 million that a defunct Washington scrap metal business allegedly owed the federal government for cleaning up an oil spill in the Columbia River.

  • November 13, 2014

    Title Insurer Not Bound By Complete Defense Rule: 7th Circ.

    The Seventh Circuit on Thursday determined that a title insurance company need defend against only claims covered in its policies, reversing an Illinois federal court opinion finding that Chicago Title Insurance Co. had to defend a real estate lender from a suit that included allegations of fraud.

  • November 12, 2014

    NY DA Wins Stay Of Securities Suit Against Ex-Dewey Exec

    An Iowa federal judge on Wednesday stayed an insurer's securities suit alleging a former Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP executive lied about the state of the now-bankrupt firm's finances, pending the conclusion of criminal proceedings in New York.

  • November 12, 2014

    AIG Bailout Judge Warns Feds On Atty-Client Privilege

    A Court of Federal Claims judge said Wednesday that the government was “venturing into dangerous waters” regarding attorney-client privilege as it attempted to question a Sullivan & Cromwell LLP attorney over the terms of the 2008 American International Group Inc. bailout, as trial continued in a shareholder dispute over the deal.

  • November 12, 2014

    5 Things To Watch As ACA Open Enrollment Starts

    As the Affordable Care Act’s second season of open enrollment kicks off Saturday, the health care industry will be intently watching how insurance marketplaces are affected by an untested renewal process, bigger individual mandate penalties and a shorter window for sign-ups. Here are five major issues as marketplaces look to dodge a sophomore slump.

  • November 12, 2014

    FGIC Could Go After Banks Under $1B Detroit Debt Deal

    Financial Guaranty Insurance Co., the insurer of $1.1 billion in Detroit’s pension-related debt, has reached an agreement to pay off underlying bondholders for the right to sue UBS AG and Bank of America Corp. over troublesome swaps connected to that debt, FGIC said Tuesday.

  • November 12, 2014

    DLA Piper, Mayer Brown Guide $500M Boston Refinancing

    A Boston two-tower office complex has received $500 million in refinancing from New York Life Insurance Co. Real Estate Investors and Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. — who were represented by DLA Piper, and the borrowers had counsel from Mayer Brown — borrower broker Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP said on Tuesday.

  • November 12, 2014

    5th Circ. Affirms Liberty Mutual Win In $13M Katrina Row

    The Fifth Circuit on Tuesday upheld a lower court's ruling in an insurance dispute arising from a fire in a Hurricane Katrina victim’s trailer, ruling that a subcontractor wasn’t responsible for the fire and that its insurer, Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., should be reimbursed for the underlying $12.75 million settlements.

  • November 12, 2014

    High Court Asked To Nix ACA's Cost-Control Panel

    A doctor and a small-business owner are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear a challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s cost-control panel and individual mandate, saying the provisions threaten to sidestep the U.S. Constitution by ignoring separation of powers and privacy issues.

  • November 12, 2014

    Market Rumors: Alibaba, Anbang, Dubai Park & Resorts

    Alibaba's Alipay is said to be heading toward an initial public offering and could be listed in mainland China, while Anbang Insurance is eyeing a Hong Kong IPO that could raise $2 billion.

  • November 12, 2014

    2 Years In, Sandy Suits Target Flood Exclusions, Deductibles

    Two years after Superstorm Sandy wreaked havoc in New York, New Jersey and other states, insurers and policyholders are sparring over the applicability of flood exclusions and so-called "named storm" deductibles, with disputes focusing on the factors causing insureds' property damage and the classification of the storm when losses occurred, attorneys say.

  • November 12, 2014

    South Carolina's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Struck Down

    A South Carolina federal judge on Wednesday added to the growing number of decisions declaring state bans on same-sex marriage unconstitutional, finding “no meaningful distinction” between South Carolina's prohibitions and a gay marriage ban in Virginia that was recently struck down by the Fourth Circuit.

  • November 12, 2014

    United Healthcare Settles $2.5B Hep-C Suit Before Trial

    Two United Healthcare Services Inc. units have settled a lawsuit possibly worth $2.5 billion in Nevada state court over allegations they exposed customers to hepatitis C by knowingly referring them to contaminated endoscopy clinics, according to court records.

  • November 12, 2014

    Circuit Courts Split In 9/11 CERCLA Case, High Court Told

    A developer recently told the U.S. Supreme Court that a circuit panel’s decision to nix its indemnification claims from damage from the 9/11 attacks is a significant split from another circuit ruling on the standard for sole cause under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act.

  • November 10, 2014

    Chartis, Tesoro Dispute Unit’s Coverage In $30M Cleanup Row

    Chartis Specialty Insurance Co. and Tesoro Corp. fired off dueling motions for summary judgment in Texas federal court, both asking the court to determine whether a policy Chartis assigned to the oil refiner in 2002 applies to a subsidiary seeking coverage of $29.6 million in environmental cleanup costs at a California refinery.

  • November 10, 2014

    Detroit Settlement Model Looms Over Future Chapter 9s

    The end of Detroit’s historic and controversial bankruptcy vindicates a mediation process that produced a consensual restructuring plan and created a model for other cities to follow despite criticism that it coerced creditors into forfeiting their legal rights, attorneys say.

Expert Analysis

  • Use Social Media For Legal Service Only As A Last Resort

    Steven Richard

    Courts remain largely skeptical about allowing litigants to serve and notify evasive parties of legal proceedings through their social media accounts. A recent split ruling by the Oklahoma Supreme Court shows the competing considerations, say Steven Richard and Britt Killian of Nixon Peabody LLP.

  • ERISA To The Rescue: Preemption Of State Law Prevails

    Douglas Darch

    The Sixth Circuit’s ruling in Sherfel v. Newson reinforces the existing interpretation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act — state law is preempted when it subjects ERISA-governed plans to different legal obligations or requires the plan administrator to pay different benefits than the plan otherwise provides, say attorneys at Baker & McKenzie.

  • Why You Should Start Thinking About Upcoming Drone Regs

    William O'Connor

    Companies and trade associations interested in obtaining the benefits of small unmanned aircraft systems should start formulating plans now to help shape the Federal Aviation Administration's much-anticipated notice of proposed rulemaking — likely to issue in mid-December — and the regulations that will come out of it. They need not wait for the notice, say attorneys with Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • Can D&O Insurers Contract Around Duty-To-Advance Costs?

    Darren S. Teshima

    If the public policy in favor of providing a defense for all claims set forth in Buss v. Superior Court prevents parties from contracting around that policy in duty-to-defend cases, that same public policy should trump allocation provisions regarding the duty to advance defense costs, say Darren Teshima and Jimmy McBirney of Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

  • OIG Remains Focused On Pharmaceutical Copayment Coupons

    Eve M. Brunts

    A report and special advisory bulletin from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General are the latest examples of ongoing scrutiny and challenges involving copayment coupons offered by pharmaceutical manufacturers, say Eve Brunts and Smita Singh of Ropes & Gray LLP.

  • Testing Texas CGL Coverage For 3rd-Party Products

    Kristin C. Cummings

    In U.S. Metals Incorporated v. Liberty Mutual Group Inc., perhaps the most significant issue to be decided by the Texas Supreme Court is whether the incorporation of a defective product into other property constitutes “physical injury” to other component parts of the property, says Kristin Cummings of Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP.

  • New Jurisdictional Issues When Moving To Quash A Subpoena

    Steven Luxton

    The Nevada federal court's recent ruling in Agincourt Gaming LLC v. Zynga Inc. is an important reminder that a nonparty wanting to challenge a civil subpoena should consider carefully the appropriate jurisdiction in which to file a motion to quash under recently enacted Rule 45, say Steven Luxton and Brad Nes of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP.

  • When Is A Party-Appointed Appraiser 'Disinterested'?

    Scott G. Johnson

    While party-appointed property appraisers must be “disinterested,” insurers and insureds may expect that they are not necessarily neutral and, in fact, will act as an advocate for their clients. But even so, there are limits on who parties can appoint — as illustrated by Florida Insurance Guaranty Association v. Branco, says Scott Johnson, chairman of Robins Kaplan Miller & Ciresi LLP's insurance and catastrophic loss group.

  • How Hotels Can Control The Consequences Of Force Majeure

    Andrew P. B. MacGeoch

    Force majeure clauses in hotel management agreements may be regarded by some as boring boilerplate provisions. Yet, in the aftermath of a significant event — which could range from heightened political tension as in Hong Kong to the rapid spread of viruses such as Ebola — it can become key to the operation of the whole agreement, say Andrew MacGeoch and Emily Wong of Mayer Brown LLP.

  • Accessing The D&O Liability Coverage Of A Bankrupt Corp.

    Mary E. McCutcheon

    A traditional directors and officers insurance policy risks dilution where the company also faces a covered claim. And when the company has filed for bankruptcy, payment of the proceeds for claims against the directors and officers may be delayed, and even impaired, says Mary McCutcheon of Farella Braun & Martel LLP.