Specialty Lines

  • May 30, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The U.S. Supreme Court revived the National Rifle Association's free speech claims against a former New York state official, a Washington state appeals court ended Quest Diagnostics' bid for COVID-related coverage, and market analyst AM Best reported record investment income for U.S. property and casualty insurers in 2023.

  • May 30, 2024

    Active Hurricane Season Looms Over Insurance Industry

    The Atlantic hurricane season could continue to stress fragile insurance markets, according to forecasts of a particularly active 2024 season, but experts say there are some positive developments for Florida insurers despite years of elevated losses.

  • May 30, 2024

    Consumer Advocate Unpacks Big Issues Facing Insureds

    The use of socioeconomic factors in auto insurance, climate change's impact on the rising cost of homeowners insurance and the hollowing out of insurance policies are some of the most pressing issues consumers face today, says an advocate from the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America.

  • May 30, 2024

    Insurer Rebukes Bad Faith Claims In $25M Child Abuse Row

    An insurer urged a Washington federal court to dismiss bad faith counterclaims brought against it by families who say the insurer failed to provide coverage toward a daycare center's $24.5 million settlement of claims that its former employee sexually molested children.

  • May 30, 2024

    Insurance Atty Fights For Lone Woman On Death Row In Miss.

    Attorney A. Kate Margolis lives a double life: one, in which she fights on behalf of insurance policyholders as counsel at Bradley, and another, spent trying to save convicted murderer Lisa Jo Chamberlin, the only woman on Mississippi's death row.

  • May 30, 2024

    Bottler Says It's Owed Defense In Wine Contamination Dispute

    A wine bottler told a California federal court its insurer must reimburse defense costs it incurred while fighting a now-settled suit seeking to hold the company liable for a $1.2 million wine contamination, arguing the lawsuit didn't specifically allege what the bottler's actions were nor the cause of contamination.

  • May 30, 2024

    Meet The Attys In Margolis Edelstein Malpractice Fight

    Counsel representing Margolis Edelstein and an insurer that has accused the firm of malpractice are gearing up for a July oral argument so the Delaware Supreme Court can decide if the firm can escape the suit.

  • May 30, 2024

    Justices Revive NRA's Free Speech Claims Against NY Official

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the National Rifle Association can proceed with certain claims in its lawsuit alleging that a former New York state official violated the gun rights group's free speech protections by pressuring financial institutions to cut ties with it.

  • May 29, 2024

    Surety Seeks Over $2.75M In Prison Fencing Work Coverage

    A construction surety told a West Virginia federal court Wednesday that subcontractors for a prison fencing project must reimburse it for more than $2.75 million in losses it incurred while settling faulty work claims asserted by the project's general contractor.

  • May 29, 2024

    Nationwide Says Hyundai, Kia Owe $7.7M For Engine Claims

    Nearly a dozen Nationwide insurers told a California federal court Wednesday that Hyundai and Kia are on the hook for 829 engine failure and engine fire claims totaling over $7.7 million in damages resulting from alleged engine defects in certain 2011-2019 vehicle models.

  • May 28, 2024

    $10M Policy Excludes Tobacco Group's Suit, Court Told

    An insurer told a North Carolina federal court Tuesday that it doesn't owe coverage to a tobacco growers' cooperative saddled with paying out a $100 million settlement for farmers, arguing that its $10 million policy excludes contract claims.

  • May 28, 2024

    Frontier, Ex-CEO Settle $21.8M Life Insurance Benefits Feud

    Frontier Communications and Leonard Tow, its former CEO and the top executive of a predecessor, have privately settled a feud surrounding tens of millions in split-dollar life insurance policies, with both sides asking a Connecticut state court judge to withdraw a $21.8 million prejudgment remedy order issued last month.

  • May 28, 2024

    US Property Insurers See Record Investment Income In 2023

    U.S. property and casualty insurers earned a record income of $73.9 billion from their investments in 2023, market analyst AM Best reported Tuesday, a bright spot for an industry beset by underwriting losses connected to natural disasters and high inflation.

  • May 28, 2024

    OpenText Says Excess Insurer Can't Join Merger Spat

    OpenText urged a Michigan federal court to keep an excess insurer out of a coverage dispute stemming from an underlying class action over the software company's merger with Covisint, arguing that the insurer's reasons behind wanting to intervene are speculative and unripe.

  • May 23, 2024

    Calif. High Court Deals Loss To Policyholder In COVID-19 Suit

    The California Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the coronavirus generally doesn't cause the kind of damage to property that would trigger coverage under an insurance policy, handing a win to a Chubb insurance company in one of the last major venues for pandemic coverage litigation.

  • May 23, 2024

    Colo. AI Bias Law Brings Little Certainty For Insurance Sector

    Colorado enacted the nation's first comprehensive regulatory scheme for protecting consumers from discriminatory and biased artificial intelligence systems, sending a warning signal to an insurance sector bracing for increased scrutiny and risks related to the technology.

  • May 23, 2024

    How An Ex-Attorney Turned Mediator Approaches Conflict

    Drawing from his 25-year career as an attorney litigating primarily insurance coverage disputes, Steven Schulwolf founded Schulwolf Mediation to help parties reach effective resolutions in even the toughest cases.

  • May 23, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    Policyholders suffered losses over COVID-19 coverage claims before the California Supreme Court and Fourth Circuit, the California high court weighed whether an exclusion rendered virus coverage illusory and if a policyholder's unfair competition claim against State Farm was untimely, and the Tenth Circuit questioned the scope of absolute pollution exclusions.

  • May 23, 2024

    2nd Circ. Revives Insurer's $2.5M Suit Over Valuation Software

    The Second Circuit on Thursday revived an insurer's indemnification bid against software company Audatex for $2.5 million in costs from a suit alleging its use of Audatex's valuation software resulted in underpayment for totaled cars, concluding the lower court erred in finding the suit didn't result from the insurer's use of Audatex's software.

  • May 23, 2024

    NC High Court Grants Review In Clothier's Virus Coverage Suit

    North Carolina's top court on Thursday agreed to take up a clothing company's coverage appeal for COVID-19 losses against Zurich after a lower appellate panel found the virus did not cause the kind of physical loss or damage necessary to invoke coverage.

  • May 23, 2024

    Antitrust Concerns Persist For New UN Insurance Group

    A new United Nations insurance-climate initiative demonstrates a continued interest among regulators for promoting a more sustainable industry, but experts say antitrust concerns and industry participation raise questions about its potential efficacy.

  • May 23, 2024

    4th Circ. Rules No Coverage For Mars' COVID Losses

    Candymaker Mars Inc. can't get coverage from Factory Mutual Insurance Co. for its COVID-19-related losses, the Fourth Circuit ruled Thursday, further rejecting Mars' bid to certify a question to the Virginia Supreme Court.

  • May 23, 2024

    Ark. Judge Sides With Insurer's Cyber Policy Interpretation

    An Arkansas federal judge ruled an insurer correctly evaluated a telemarketing company's losses from a cyberattack, agreeing that "normal operating expenses" the company paid from revenue during that period aren't included in the loss and that any other interpretation would give the company a windfall.

  • May 23, 2024

    Coverage Suit Paused Until Resolution Of Gun Sales Dispute

    A California federal court paused Crum & Forster's suit against a police gun and fitness club and the city of Los Angeles over coverage for underlying actions brought by officers accusing the club of selling them stolen handguns, citing factual overlap between the actions.

  • May 22, 2024

    Ill. Justices Weigh Zurich's Right To Recover $3M Flood Loss

    The Illinois Supreme Court weighed Wednesday whether Zurich American Insurance Co. can recoup $3 million from a subcontractor for water damage repair costs the insurer paid to a general contractor despite Zurich filing suit on behalf of a different insured.

Expert Analysis

  • What New Conn. Insurance Bulletin Means For Data And AI

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    A recent bulletin from the Connecticut Insurance Department concerning insurers' usage of artificial intelligence systems appears consistent with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' gradual shift away from focusing on big data, and may potentially protect insurers from looming state requirements despite a burdensome framework, say attorneys at Day Pitney. 

  • High Court Should Maintain Insurer Neutrality In Bankruptcy

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    While a recent Law360 guest article argues that the U.S. Supreme Court should endorse insurer standing in Truck Insurance Exchange v. Kaiser Gypsum, doing so would create a playground for mischief and delay, and the high court should instead uphold insurance neutrality, say attorneys at Lowenstein Sandler.

  • Spartan Arbitration Tactics Against Well-Funded Opponents

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    Like the ancient Spartans who held off a numerically superior Persian army at the Battle of Thermopylae, trial attorneys and clients faced with arbitration against an opponent with a bigger war chest can take a strategic approach to create a pass to victory, say Kostas Katsiris and Benjamin Argyle at Venable.

  • What 2 Years Of Ukraine-Russia Conflict Can Teach Cos.

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    A few key legal lessons for the global business community since Russia's invasion of Ukraine could help protect global commerce in times of future conflict, including how to respond to disparate trade restrictions and sanctions, navigate war-related contract disputes, and protect against heightened cybersecurity risks, say attorneys at Morgan Lewis.

  • Cos. Seeking Cyber Coverage Can Look To Key Policy Terms

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    As cyberattacks increasingly threaten business operations, including one last month that partially paralyzed UnitedHealth's services, expanded interpretations of several key policy terms may allow affected companies to recover under cyber business interruption policies or other coverage, even if their business hasn't completely shut down, say attorneys at Kasowitz.

  • Insurance Industry Asbestos Reserve Estimates Are Unreliable

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    Insurance regulators rely on industry self-reporting in approving insurance company reorganizations, but AM Best data reveals that actuarial and audit estimates have been setting perniciously low levels of loss reserves for asbestos liabilities and thus should be treated with deep skepticism, says Jonathan Terrell at KCIC.

  • Insurance Implications Of Trump's NY Civil Fraud Verdict

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    A New York state trial court’s $450 million judgment against former President Donald Trump and affiliated entities for valuation fraud offers several important lessons for companies seeking to obtain directors and officers insurance, including the consequences of fraudulent misrepresentations and critical areas of underwriting risk, says Kevin LaCroix at RT ProExec.

  • Understanding Insurance Is Key To Limiting Antitrust Liability

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    As regulators signal their intent to continue last year's aggressive campaign of corporate antitrust litigation, businesses must make active management of their liability insurance policies, along with a firm knowledge of the limits of their coverage, central to their strategies for limiting the enormous financial risks of enforcement, say attorneys at Nossaman.

  • High Court Should Endorse Insurer Standing In Bankruptcy

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    In Truck Insurance Exchange v. Kaiser Gypsum, the U.S. Supreme Court will examine bankruptcy standing doctrine as applied to insurers in mass tort cases, and should use the opportunity to eliminate spurious standing roadblocks to resolving insurer objections on their merits, says Frank Perch at White and Williams.

  • Lessons For D&O Policyholders From Pharma Co. Ruling

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    A California federal court's recent decision in AmTrust v. 180 Life Sciences, requiring insurers to advance defense costs for a potentially covered claim, provides a valuable road map for directors and officers insurance policyholders, rebutting the common presumption that a D&O insurer's duty to advance costs is more limited than under other policies, say attorneys at Pasich.

  • 5 Tips For Policyholders Arbitrating R&W Insurance Claims

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    With more representations and warranties insurance disputes being arbitrated, policyholder counsel should note issues that are unique to RWI claims, including those of privilege, priority and preserving subrogation, says Micah Skidmore at Haynes Boone. 

  • Justices Stay The Course In Maritime Choice-Of-Law Ruling

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's narrowly drawn decision in Great Lakes Insurance v. Raiders Retreat Realty, enforcing the underlying insurance contract's choice-of-law provision, carefully distinguishes those provisions from forum selection clauses, and ensures that courts will not apply its precepts outside the maritime context, says John Coyle at the University of North Carolina.

  • Key Lessons After A Rare R&W Insurance Ruling

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    The recent New York state court decision in Novolex Holdings v. Illinois Union Insurance is noteworthy as one of the rare judicial opinions arising in the context of representations and warranties insurance, serving to remind parties entering into R&W insurance policies that they may not be immune from some doctrines unfavorable to insurers, say attorneys at Kramer Levin.