9th Circ. Buoys Policyholders In Excess Settlement Fights

Law360, Los Angeles (March 22, 2017, 9:17 PM EDT) -- The Ninth Circuit refused Tuesday to disturb California appellate precedent establishing that an excess insurance carrier must either approve a policyholder's settlement of a covered claim or assume the insured's defense if it wishes to avoid litigation, giving policyholders more leverage to secure reluctant excess insurers' participation in settlement talks.

In a published opinion, a three-judge panel of the appeals court affirmed a jury's verdict that excess insurer National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., must pay $3.75 million to laryngeal mask company LMA North America Inc. to cover its settlement with a competitor over misleading advertisements allegedly characterizing the...

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