Property

  • February 01, 2024

    Insurer Wants Out Of $1M Construction Defect Coverage Suit

    An insurer told a Florida federal court that it shouldn't have to cover builders in underlying litigation accusing them of causing more than $1 million in damage via defective construction on a beachfront vacation home.

  • January 31, 2024

    Policyholders Can Film Insurers At Exams, Calif. Panel Says

    Californians have a right to film their insurers' representatives during coverage examinations, a state appeals court ruled, rejecting Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.'s arguments that the California Insurance Code allowed policyholders to only record themselves on video.

  • January 31, 2024

    $17.5M Hail Claim Mostly Not Covered, Insurer Says

    A storage company's insurer told a Texas federal court that much of the nearly $17.5 million in hail damage the company said it suffered wasn't actually caused by hail, adding that it refused to allow a construction consultant to inspect its property "despite multiple requests."

  • January 31, 2024

    Lab Says $7M Stolen Data Is Property And Should Be Covered

    A national medical testing lab told a Pennsylvania federal court that patient treatment records and at least $7 million of billing data allegedly hijacked by its software contractor was property and should therefore be covered by its insurer. 

  • January 31, 2024

    Fla. Restaurants Say Ian Deductible Was $400K Too High

    A Florida restaurant owner told a federal court Wednesday that its insurer charged too high of a deductible for coverage for damages from Hurricane Ian, alleging that the insurer needs to pay it back more than $400,000 of the $1 million paid to account for the correct deductible amount.

  • January 31, 2024

    No Fee Win For Condos After Midcase Appeal, 11th Circ. Told

    The Eleventh Circuit should not grant attorney fees to two Florida condominium associations that persuaded the court to reject Empire Indemnity Insurance's bid to avoid appraisal, the insurer told the court, arguing their victory over the insurer's appeal doesn't entitle them to recover those costs.

  • January 31, 2024

    Liberty Mutual Units Must Help Cover Warehouse, Court Told

    The insurer for a furniture retailer told a California federal court that it doesn't owe coverage to a warehouse owner in underlying bodily injury litigation, saying it was relieved of its defense duties by a lease termination agreement.

  • January 30, 2024

    Insurer Ordered To Pay Casino $55K In Attorney Fees

    An insurer must pay a Las Vegas casino and resort more than $55,000 in attorney fees after a Nevada federal judge sanctioned the carrier in September, ruling that the insurer failed to produce relevant portions of its claims manual during a COVID-19 coverage dispute.

  • January 30, 2024

    Tenn. Judge Hands Insurer Win In Collapse Coverage Trial

    A North Carolina-based insurance company isn't obligated to cover over $1 million in claimed damages and lost rental income connected to the restoration of a century-old building in Chattanooga, a Tennessee federal judge found in a trial ruling Tuesday.

  • January 30, 2024

    Pipeline Builder Says Insurer Owes Defense In Explosion Suit

    A pipeline construction company told a Texas federal court Tuesday that a subcontractor's insurer must defend the company in a personal injury suit stemming from a nitrogen gas explosion, asserting that it qualifies as an additional insured.

  • January 30, 2024

    Colo. Pizzeria Says Insurer Owes More Fire Coverage

    A Colorado pizzeria that was damaged by a fire in 2021 told a Colorado federal court its insurer still owes coverage for business losses and other expenses, arguing that the insurer is in part to blame for the restaurant being unable to complete its restorations required by its policy.

  • January 30, 2024

    Fennemore Craig Growing In Calif. With Sullivan Hill Merger

    In its latest West Coast expansion, Fennemore Craig PC announced Tuesday it is widening its footprint in San Diego through a merger with Sullivan Hill, with the latter's experts in insurance, construction, commercial bankruptcy and employment law joining Fennemore's existing four-attorney team in the city.

  • January 29, 2024

    Insurer's Counterclaim Tossed From $7M Elevator Verdict Row

    An insurer has no grounds to pursue a counterclaim against excess insurer Great American Insurance Co. in a dispute with an elevator maintenance company over a $7.3 million negligence verdict, a Florida federal judge ruled Monday.

  • January 29, 2024

    Increase In Trafficking Reveals Hospitality Coverage Concerns

    As human trafficking continues to increase and travel returns to prepandemic levels, hospitality industry policyholders may see more direct trafficking exclusions and increased education requirements as the insurance industry works to address this growing risk, experts said.

  • January 29, 2024

    Pollution Exclusion Applies In Oil Well Row, Underwriters Say

    Underwriters for a now-defunct oil services company told a Texas federal court they should not pay a $10.6 million underlying judgment to two companies over drainage losses to their oil wells, because the defunct company's policy excluded pollution and waste claims.

  • January 29, 2024

    Escrow Agent Not Covered For Fraud Suits, Court Told

    An escrow agent no longer has coverage for four underlying suits accusing it of unlawfully withholding funds or distributing them to third parties who had no valid claim to the money, an insurer told a Florida federal court, saying its theft coverage extension endorsement has been exhausted.

  • January 29, 2024

    Fla. Law Firm Escapes Contractor's Malpractice Suit

    A Florida federal judge has agreed to toss a storm damage contractor's more than $1 million lawsuit centering on an acrimonious breakup with its former law firm, but allowed the contractor a chance at refiling its legal malpractice claims.

  • January 26, 2024

    Nelson Mullins' Rates Spark Coverage Spat Over Builder's Suit

    An insurance policy battle between an exterior building product manufacturer and its insurer over who should pay for a law firm's services in a separate lawsuit spilled into Ohio federal court this week after the insurer removed the company's case from state court to the federal arena.

  • January 26, 2024

    School Says Security Insurer Failed To Cover Stabbing Row

    A security company's insurer failed to provide coverage to a school for behavioral problems in an underlying suit alleging a student was stabbed and bullied in the gym due to the school's negligence and tolerance of violence, according to a suit removed to D.C. federal court.

  • January 26, 2024

    Auto Biz Says Insurer Can't Escape $500K Damage Claims

    A vehicle lift installer urged a Minnesota federal court to preserve its counterclaims in a coverage dispute over nearly $500,000 in claims stemming from fire damage and a tipped container, arguing that its insurer constructively denied most of the claim by repeating investigations and denying payments for over a year.

  • January 26, 2024

    Insurer Denied Early Win In Landlord's Hurricane Damage Suit

    An insurer wasn't able to beat a suburban New Orleans commercial property owner's Louisiana federal case over more than $220,000 in 2021 Hurricane Ida damage, but did succeed in limiting testimony.

  • January 26, 2024

    Texas Motel Says Insurer Fell $750K Short On Storm Damage

    AIG unit Lexington Insurance Co. underpaid for storm damage to a Texas Econo Lodge Inn & Suites, offering only a sum more than $750,000 smaller than the company's own repair estimate, the motel's owner told a federal court.

  • February 08, 2024

    Law360 Seeks Members For Its 2024 Editorial Boards

    Law360 is looking for avid readers of its publications to serve as members of its 2024 editorial advisory boards.

  • January 26, 2024

    State Farm Underpaid Miss. Property Losses, Class Suit Says

    A Mississippi homeowner accused State Farm Fire and Casualty in federal court of intentionally underpaying her fire damage claim by using the wrong setting in its pricing software, treating the repairs as new construction and improperly excluding higher labor costs associated with more complicated fixes. 

  • January 25, 2024

    Excess Insurers Win In Construction Defect Coverage Suit

    A residential developer wrongly tapped into certain excess insurance, a California federal judge ruled Thursday, finding that the $3.2 million its primary insurer spent on defense costs in underlying construction defect litigation didn't count toward triggering a $10 million excess policy.

Expert Analysis

  • Ga. Mirror-Image Rule Makes Settlements Fraught For Insurers

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    The Georgia Court of Appeals' recent decision in Pierce v. Banks shows how strictly Georgia courts will enforce the rule that an insurer's response to a settlement demand must be a mirror image of the demand — and is a reminder that parties must exercise caution when accepting such a demand, says Seth Friedman at Lewis Brisbois.

  • What's In The NAIC's Draft AI Bulletin

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    The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has released a draft bulletin on insurers' use of artificial intelligence systems, intended as a template for regulators to guide insurers to employ AI consistently with market conduct, corporate governance and unfair and deceptive trade practice laws, say Paige Waters and Stephanie O'Neill Macro at Locke Lord.

  • Insurance Ruling Shows Notice Letters Need Close Review

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    A Texas appeals court's recent disapproval of an insured’s presuit notice letter to Westchester Surplus Lines Insurance — which refused to quantify an alleged injury — should prompt courts to probe deeper when considering whether such a letter gives the insurer the information needed to resolve the claim or make a settlement offer, say Jennifer Martin and Timothy Delabar at Wilson Elser.

  • Groundbreaking Nev. Law May Alter Insurance Landscape

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    The Nevada Legislature recently passed a law prohibiting insurers from issuing liability policies with eroding limits provisions that has the potential to create massive shifts in the marketplace — and specifically in areas like professional liability, cyber, and directors and officers insurance, says Will Bennett at Saxe Doernberger.

  • What The ESG Divide Means For Insurers And Beyond

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    The debate around ESG is becoming increasingly polarized, with some states passing legislation that prohibits the use of ESG factors and others advancing affirmative legislation, highlighting the importance for insurers and other companies to understand this complex legal landscape, say Scott Seaman and Bessie Daschbach at Hinshaw.

  • 2nd Circ. Reinsurance Ruling Correctly Applied English Law

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    Contrary to a recent Law360 guest article's argument, the Second Circuit correctly applied English law when it decided in Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania v. Equitas that concurrent reinsurance certificates required the reinsurer to cover loss in accordance with the law of the policy's governing jurisdiction, say Peter Chaffetz and Andrew Poplinger at Chaffetz Lindsey.

  • Hospitality Biz Must Prep For Seaweed Damage Coverage

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    With the Great Atlantic Sargassum Seaweed Belt, a 10-million-ton mass of brown seaweed, potentially about to approach the coasts of the U.S. Southeast, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, affected policyholders should consider whether their losses are covered by their property insurance policies, say attorneys at Pillsbury.

  • ALI, Bar Groups Need More Defense Engagement For Balance

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    The American Law Institute and state bar committees have a special role in the development of the law — but if they do not do a better job of including attorneys from the defense bar, they will come to be viewed as special interest advocacy groups, says Mark Behrens at Shook Hardy.

  • 2nd Circ. Reinsurance Ruling Misconstrues English Law

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    The Second Circuit's finding in Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania v. Equitas Insurance, that London-based reinsurer Equitas owed coverage for losses outside the policy period, stems from that court's misinterpretation of English law on reinsurance policy construction, says Christopher Foster at Holman Fenwick.

  • How Fla. Tort Reform Will Shift Construction Defect Suits

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    Recent modifications to Florida's private statutory action rules for building code violations and to the statute of limitations and repose for defect claims significantly clarify ambiguity that had existed under previous rules, and both claimants and defendants should consider new legal arguments that may become possible, say Ryan Soohoo and George Truitt at Cole Scott.

  • PFAS Coverage Litigation Strategy Lessons For Policyholders

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    While policyholders' efforts to recover insurance proceeds for PFAS-related costs are in the early stages, it appears from litigation so far that substantial coverage should be available for PFAS-related liabilities, including both defense costs and indemnity payments in connection with those liabilities, say Benedict Lenhart and Alexis Dyschkant at Covington.

  • Climate Reporting Regs Mean New Risks To Insure

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    As regulators in the U.S., U.K. and beyond implement new climate-related investment and disclosure requirements for corporations, decision makers should investigate whether their insurance policies offer the right coverage to respond to the legal and regulatory risks of this increased scrutiny, says David Cummings at Reed Smith.

  • Unpacking NY's Revamped Wrongful Death Bill

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    Legislation to amend New York’s wrongful death law, introduced May 2, proposes more limited reforms than an earlier version the governor vetoed in January, but will likely still face strong opposition due to the severe financial impacts it would have on insurers’ set premiums and reserves, say Eric Andrew and David Adams at Hurwitz Fine.

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