General Liability

  • October 12, 2022

    Fatal Bar Shooting Coverage Capped At $300K, Judge Says

    An insurer is only required to pay a commercial general liability policy's $300,000 limit toward a lawsuit over a fatal bar shooting, a Connecticut federal court ruled, finding that the amount is capped under the policy's assault and battery endorsement.

  • October 12, 2022

    No Coverage For Suit Under Unconfirmed Policy, Insurer Says

    An insurer doesn't owe coverage to two Virginia-based organizations in an underlying suit brought by a woman who alleges she was sexually abused by the organizations' founder during the 1990s, the insurer told a Virginia federal court, arguing that the organizations haven't provided proof that insurance policies existed.

  • October 12, 2022

    Fla. Co. Not Paying Up On Construction Bonds, Insurer Says

    A Florida construction company must pay an insurer for costs it incurred under performance bonds issued to the firm, which defaulted on a fire station project covered by the bonds, the insurer told a federal court.

  • October 11, 2022

    Insurer Scores Win In Paper Waste Disposal Coverage Fight

    Harleysville Preferred Insurance Co. has no coverage obligations to International Paper Co. in a suit alleging that it was liable for property damage stemming from the release of a paper byproduct, an Alabama federal judge ruled, finding that a pollution exclusion is applicable.

  • October 11, 2022

    Insurer Can't Escape Coverage Of Fatal Shooting Suit

    An insurer cannot rely on a firearms exclusion to bar coverage of a suit brought against the owner of an apartment complex where a man was fatally shot in 2021, a Georgia federal court ruled Tuesday, also finding that the owner's partner company is not an additional insured under the policy.

  • October 11, 2022

    Health Care Co. Seeks Full Coverage For COVID Claims

    A health care company should have to satisfy only one self-insured retention before it can receive millions in insurance coverage for a slew of claims asserted by long-term care residents who allege they contracted COVID-19 at nursing home facilities, the company told a Pennsylvania federal court.

  • October 11, 2022

    Insurer Can't Upend Developer's Construction Coverage Win

    Underwriters at Lloyd's of London must defend a developer in an underlying construction defect suit, a Texas federal court ruled, rejecting the insurer's bid for review and finding there is no gap between the pleadings and policy that would require the consideration of extrinsic evidence.

  • October 11, 2022

    Split Lead Paint Coverage Rulings Show Forums' Importance

    The critical importance of forum selection in insurance disputes was laid bare this year by divergent rulings involving three paint makers ordered to pay into a $305 million lead paint abatement fund, as two companies secured coverage from Ohio and New York appellate courts while the third lost its appeal before a California panel.

  • October 07, 2022

    Amerisure Fights Covering Construction Co. In Crane Row

    Amerisure Mutual Insurance Co. told a Georgia federal court it shouldn't have to cover a construction company over a 2020 crane mishap, saying the builder should have been aware of conditions at the worksite that led to the crane falling through a parking lot and becoming damaged.

  • October 07, 2022

    Insurer Must Share Coverage For Faulty Flavoring, Court Told

    Another insurer must share coverage of claims asserted against Bell Flavors and Fragrances over faulty garlic flavoring, Berkley Assurance Co. told an Illinois federal court, saying an AmTrust unit sat back and forced Berkley to shoulder all liability.

  • October 07, 2022

    Mediating Teva Kickback Case 'Futile At Present,' Feds Say

    Prosecutors pursuing a Medicare kickbacks case against Teva Pharmaceuticals told a Massachusetts federal judge that holding mediation would be "futile at present," opposing the drug giant's request for formal talks.

  • October 07, 2022

    Insurer Can't Duck Bad Repo Settlement Coverage, Co. Says

    An asset-recovery company asked a Washington federal court to find that an insurer for a company it hired for a vehicle repossession failed to properly defend both companies in litigation arising from that repossession, saying the insurer made unreasonably low settlement offers.

  • October 07, 2022

    Boy Scouts Appeals To Be Consolidated, Briefed By December

    A Delaware federal judge agreed to consolidate more than a dozen appeals of the Boy Scouts' confirmed Chapter 11 plan Friday, saying he will approve a schedule that would see briefing completed before the end of the year.

  • October 07, 2022

    Insurer Seeks To Trim Fraud Claim From Fire Damage Suit

    An insurer asked a Texas federal judge on Friday to toss a hotelier's fraud claim in a dispute over coverage for fire damage at a Dallas hotel, saying the property owner's claim does not meet the required heightened pleading standard.

  • October 07, 2022

    Water Co. Not Covered For Worker's Burn Suit, Insurer Says

    An insurer told a Texas federal court that several policy exclusions bar coverage for a saltwater disposal company being sued by an employee who suffered severe burns when a trash pump burst, and that another insurer is primarily responsible for coverage but has failed in its obligations.

  • October 07, 2022

    Not All Missing Policy Cases Require Sherlock Holmes

    Being unable to locate physical copies of policies from decades ago can be daunting, but legal experts say the best approach can be as elementary as starting within the policyholder's own records.

  • October 06, 2022

    1st BIPA Jury Trial May Raise Coverage Headaches

    The decisions in the first jury trial over Illinois' biometric privacy statute on issues like the standard for a willful violation of the law and the appropriate damages in cases where biometric information was illegally collected but not published could create coverage headaches for both policyholders and insurers.

  • October 06, 2022

    11th Circ. Affirms Coverage For Shoddy Construction Suit

    The Eleventh Circuit upheld a lower court's ruling Thursday, finding unanimously that an insurer must defend a subcontractor in a suit over poor construction quality at a Maryland casino but does not have to defend a contractor who was not the primary insured.

  • October 06, 2022

    Ace Drops Insurer From McDonald's Fire Coverage Suit

    Ace American Insurance Co. moved Thursday to dismiss a Zurich unit from its effort to avoid covering fire damage to an Illinois McDonald's, saying it wasn't seeking any relief from the insurer.

  • October 06, 2022

    Builder Says Liberty Mutual Owes $1.3M For Contract Delays

    An Indiana construction company sued Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. and an Air Force base contractor for $1.3 million it says it is owed for extra work it had to perform, allegedly due to the contractor's delays and mistakes.

  • October 06, 2022

    Insurer Says Chainsaw Co. Liable For House Fire Damage

    Cambridge Mutual Fire Insurance Co. sued chainsaw maker Stihl on behalf of one of its policyholders, accusing the company of selling a defective chainsaw and charger that caused a fire at a New Jersey home.

  • October 06, 2022

    Camden Diocese Calls Ch. 11 Plan Best To Address Abuse

    Attorneys for the bankrupt Diocese of Camden told a New Jersey judge Thursday that its plan to channel hundreds of claims for sexual abuse into an $87.5 million settlement fund is the best way to address the wrongs of the past and prevent future abuse.

  • October 06, 2022

    $4.5M Mississippi Fire Coverage Suit Settled On Trial Day

    A $4.5 million suit brought by a homeowner in Mississippi federal court that alleged her insurer wantonly exited an appraisal process and withheld fire coverage was dismissed after the parties reached a settlement the day of the jury trial.

  • October 06, 2022

    Too Soon For Ruling In Toxic Fumes Coverage Suit, Court Told

    An insurer must continue defending a business center owner accused of failing to stop a gun manufacturer tenant from emitting noxious fumes, a group of underlying claimants told a Florida federal judge, saying it is too soon to decide whether a pollution exclusion bars coverage.

  • October 06, 2022

    Prior Knowledge Of Botched Surgery Bars Coverage, Court Told

    A medical device company is not covered for costs stemming from an underlying lawsuit asserting one of its products caused a botched bladder surgery because the company or its directors knew of the incident before applying for the disputed insurance policy, the company's insurer said.

Expert Analysis

  • Virus Coverage Prospects Are Bright For Ind. Policyholders

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    Indiana’s strong history of rigorous protection for insureds and strict scrutiny of contract terms bodes well for policyholders seeking coverage for COVID-19-related losses, so they should not take denials at face value, say attorneys at Plews Shadley.

  • Pa. Ruling Strengthens Arguments For COVID Loss Coverage

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    This week, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court provided critical insight on the legal characterization and consequences of the COVID-19 crisis, finding policyholders’ business losses during the pandemic are indistinguishable from those caused by casualty events for which property-based insurance coverage has always been intended, says Jordan Rand at Klehr Harrison.

  • Problematic 'Unavailability' Insurance Exception Lives On

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    The Maryland Court of Appeals’ unfortunate decision in Rossello v. Zurich represents the second time in the last six months that a state supreme court has approved unavailability of insurance as an exception to the general rule of time-of-the-risk proration for long-tail claims, based on case law that is no longer good authority, says Michael Aylward at Morrison Mahoney.

  • COVID-19 Test Providers, Beware Kickback Enforcement Tool

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    Labs and providers offering COVID-19 tests should take several measures to reduce their risk of aggressive government prosecution of unlawful quid pro quos under the newly weaponized Eliminating Kickbacks in Recovery Act, says Joshua Robbins at Greenberg Gross.

  • A Call To Action For The Coming Insurance Litigation Siege

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    Anticipating an onslaught of insurance litigation over coronavirus business interruption claims, G. Andrew Lundberg at Burford Capital paints a picture of what cooperation could look like among lawyers, courts, legislatures, regulators, insurers and policyholders dealing with this once-in-a-generation stress on the nation's judicial resources.

  • Insurers Should Act Now To Guard Against COVID-19 Claims

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    If insurers are to stanch the flow of coverage claims from policyholders impacted by the coronavirus, they must be prepared to fight and win early cases concerning property insurance and other types of policies because even small cases could set important precedents at this stage, say attorneys at Lewis Baach.

  • Reinsurers Must Prepare For Coronavirus-Related Claims

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    Given the tremendous volume of insurance claims expected as a result of COVID-19 and the possibility that these claims will lead to reinsurance cessions, reinsurers should promptly review their assumed portfolios to determine their potential exposure, say Scott Seaman and Edward Lenci at Hinshaw & Culbertson.

  • Does COVID-19 Fall Under Insurers' Pollution Exclusions?

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    Despite inconsistent rulings from state and federal courts, an analysis of bacterial and viral contamination cases provides insight on whether COVID-19 is the type of environmental harm expected to fall within insurance policies' pollution provisions, says Elise Allen at BatesCarey.

  • Should States Force Property Insurers To Cover Virus Losses?

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    A proposed New Jersey bill requiring some commercial property insurance policies to construe the coronavirus pandemic as a covered cause of loss would likely survive a contract clause challenge, but this type of law could set a dangerous precedent, say Linda Hsu and Savannah Montanez at Selman Breitman.

  • Don't Assume 'Physical Loss' Language Bars Virus Coverage

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    A recent Law360 guest article mistakenly assumes that many standard insurance policies will not cover COVID-19 business interruptions without a specialized endorsement, when in actuality courts will not automatically deny such claims because of a physical damage requirement, says Stacy Tucker at Kantor & Kantor.

  • 8 Possible Paths To Insurance Coverage For COVID-19 Losses

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    At least some insurance policies are almost certain to apply to coronavirus-related losses, and a few hypothetical situations explain how, say attorneys at Covington.

  • Future Battles Foreshadowed In First COVID-19 Insurance Suit

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    The first insurance lawsuit on record for coronavirus coverage — Oceana Grill v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's, filed in Louisiana state court — highlights key questions that will be echoed across the country and underscores the importance of acting now to preserve claims, says Tae Andrews at Miller Friel.

  • NJ Cos. May Have Insurance Coverage For COVID-19 Losses

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    Two New Jersey cases from 2009 and 2014 indicate that the physical injury requirement under property insurance policies may be interpreted broadly enough to apply to losses resulting from the coronavirus crisis, say Robert Chesler and Nicholas Insua at Anderson Kill.