General Liability

  • February 13, 2024

    Insurer Must Face Bad Faith Claim In Premium Refund Suit

    A Liberty Mutual unit can't escape a proposed class action's remaining claim that the insurer acted in bad faith by failing to adequately adjust auto insurance premiums collected during the COVID-19 pandemic, a California federal court ruled.

  • February 13, 2024

    Dallas Venue Not Covered For Shooting Death, Insurer Says

    The property owner of a Dallas event space is not owed defense or indemnity for an underlying wrongful death lawsuit, an insurer told a Texas federal court, arguing that negligent inaction by the property owner triggers two exclusions barring coverage.

  • February 13, 2024

    Insurer Says Fire Co. Owes $3.7M For Hotel Water Damage

    A fire protection and security services company must pay more than $3.7 million for water damage at an Ohio hotel, a Liberty Mutual unit told an Ohio federal court, arguing that the damage was caused by the company's negligence in maintaining a fire sprinkler system.

  • February 12, 2024

    Trailer Owner Covered Under Driver's Policy, 9th Circ. Affirms

    A Berkshire Hathaway unit must cover a trucking company that was sued over a fatal car accident involving one of its trailers, the Ninth Circuit found Monday, affirming a California federal court's finding and saying the company qualifies as an insured under the policy without exception.

  • February 12, 2024

    Ex-McCarter & English Client Can Pursue $20M Loan Claims

    A Connecticut state court judge has denied a bid by McCarter & English LLP and a former partner for an early win in an insurance company's multimillion-dollar malpractice suit, ruling that the continuing representation doctrine allowed the plaintiff to toll the statute of limitations and continue to press its case.

  • February 12, 2024

    NM Dry Cleaner Says Policy Covers Chemical Cleanup Costs

    The property owner of a New Mexico dry cleaner told a federal court Monday that State Farm has refused to defend it against an investigation and demand for remediation from the state's environmental protection agency after the discovery of chlorinated solvent contamination in its property's soil.

  • February 12, 2024

    Three-State Test Critical To Evaluating Carrier Climate Risk

    An analysis finding that insurers' investment portfolios are at risk of losing billions of dollars under delayed climate-transition plans is an important step to fully understanding how well carriers' business activities are aligned with climate goals, experts say.

  • February 12, 2024

    Tree Removal Mixup Merits Coverage, Homebuilder Tells Court

    A homebuilder's insurer must defend it in litigation over the accidental removal of 66 trees in an adjacent lot, the homebuilder told a Texas federal court, arguing the tree removal was accidental and thus an occurrence under its commercial general liability policy.

  • February 12, 2024

    Travelers Says No Coverage For $1.8M Pollution Cleanup

    A Travelers unit said it has no duty to reimburse an oil and gas company over $1.8 million for costs it incurred cleaning up 1,600 barrels of spilled brine water, telling a Pennsylvania federal court the company failed to meet its policies' reporting requirements.

  • February 09, 2024

    No Coverage In Home Remodel Row, Insurer Says

    State National Insurance Co. should have no duty to defend or indemnify a general contractor accused of submitting fraudulent invoices for a home remodel, the insurer told a California federal court, arguing that two faulty work exclusions are applicable.

  • February 09, 2024

    Fruit Of The Loom Entity Seeks Pay For Sports Complex Work

    Fruit of the Loom subsidiary Russell Brands LLC said it's owed $256,000 for its work on the construction of an Ohio sports complex, telling an Ohio federal court that the builder, property owner and surety have failed to tender payment nearly a year after the work was completed.

  • February 09, 2024

    Insurer, Day Care Battle Coverage For $21.6M Death Judgment

    A day care's insurer told a Florida federal court it owes no coverage for a $21.6 million judgment over an infant's death because the day care's premium-financing company canceled the policy "several weeks" before, while the day care argued that the financing company lacked the power to do so.

  • February 09, 2024

    New York Teacher Pays $75K For Mock Slave Auction Harm

    A northern New York teacher will pay $75,000 for holding a mock slave auction of Black students in her classroom, settling a federal suit over a lesson a 10-year-old student's mother said emotionally damaged her son.

  • February 09, 2024

    Widow Can Sue Trucking Co.'s Agent Over Policy, Panel Says

    The widow of a man who died in a trucking accident may proceed with her suit accusing the company's insurance agent of negligently procuring an excess policy, a Michigan state appeals court held, finding that an assignment of rights to the widow did not release the company from liability.

  • February 08, 2024

    'Utter Chaos' If Duty To Defend Ruling Is Upheld, 5th Circ. Told

    Upholding a Texas district court's ruling that Kinsale Insurance Co. must defend wrongful death claims stemming from an amateur racing event because of policy ambiguities would create "utter chaos," the insurer told the Fifth Circuit on Thursday, noting the policy at issue involved standard-form exclusionary endorsements.

  • February 08, 2024

    Insurer Says Policy Won't Cover $1.3M Title Agency Defense

    An insurer wants a North Carolina federal court to rule that a policy excludes defending a title insurance agency in an underlying lawsuit alleging the agency worked with an unapproved and financially questionable law firm, costing an underwriter at least $1.25 million.

  • February 08, 2024

    11th Circ. Won't Undo State Farm's Shooting Coverage Loss

    The Eleventh Circuit refused Thursday to hear State Farm's challenge to a lower court decision ordering it to cover an $877,660 judgment for a gas station employee shot on the premises that he obtained against his employers, finding it lacked jurisdiction since the decision wasn't final or immediately appealable.

  • February 08, 2024

    Mass Shooting Survivor Loses $17M Judgment On Appeal

    A Texas appellate court has overturned a mass shooting victim's $17 million judgment she won against a restaurant after accusing one of its managers of not sufficiently intervening, ruling that the food joint can't be held to account because the manager wasn't found to have had a responsibility to control the shooter.

  • February 08, 2024

    Insurance Orgs. Say Bill Would Prevent CFPB Overreach

    Bipartisan legislation seeking to clarify the powers of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has drawn support from insurance regulators and industry trade groups who say the bureau has encroached upon state-based insurance regulation despite clear statutory limitations.

  • February 08, 2024

    NTSB Accused Of Withholding Derailed Train Parts

    Rail car leasing firm GATX Corp. and chemical firm OxyVinyls LP asked an Ohio federal judge to force the National Transportation Safety Board to let them examine parts from the Norfolk Southern train that derailed in East Palestine last year, claiming the agency is holding out on them.

  • February 08, 2024

    Esurance Pockets Totaled Vehicles' Sales Tax, Suit Says

    Auto insurer Esurance stole from customers by routinely failing to cover sales tax on totaled vehicles, a policyholder said in a proposed class action filed in New York federal court.

  • February 08, 2024

    Landscaper, Insurer Agree To Kill Herbicide Coverage Claims

    A lawn care company and its insurer agreed to drop the remaining claims in the company's bid to secure $5 million in coverage after accidentally damaging its customers' lawns with an herbicide, according to a notice filed in a South Dakota federal court.

  • February 07, 2024

    Insurer Ducks Some Coverage Of Dredge Tank Defect Suit

    A Wisconsin federal judge Wednesday ruled partially in favor of an insurer seeking a declaration that it needn't cover a metal fabricator's defense in an underlying arbitration over allegedly defective dredge tanks.

  • February 07, 2024

    'Family' Exclusion Nixes Coverage For Menards, 8th Circ. Says

    An Iowa Menards home improvement retailer doesn't have coverage under the insurance of a customer who launched an injury suit against it, an Eighth Circuit panel ruled in a published opinion, finding intrafamily immunity applied, even if the shopper was unrelated to the employee who allegedly dropped lumber on her.

  • February 07, 2024

    Wyndham Gets Joint Employer Claim Cut From Trafficking Suit

    An Ohio federal judge has partly granted Wyndham's motion to dismiss an anonymous accuser's claims that the hotel giant's inaction facilitated sex trafficking, reasoning the hotel company didn't exercise enough control over a franchise location's employees to be held liable as a joint employer.

Expert Analysis

  • How Shareholder Activists Are Targeting Insurers

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    As shareholder activists take a closer look at the insurance industry, they are pushing insurers to take value-enhancing and climate-related measures — but insurers can prepare by anticipating activist concerns, maintaining robust shareholder engagement, and considering changes in response to the universal proxy rules, say attorneys at Debevoise.

  • Breaking Down Insurers' Improper Recoupment Efforts

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    In a recent trend, insurance companies have sought to recoup defense costs from their policyholders, but there are four counterarguments that policyholders can deploy to fend off these concerning recoupment efforts, say William Passannante and Nicholas Bradley at Anderson Kill.

  • Insurers Should Prepare For 'Black Swan' Climate Disasters

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    As rapid climate change results in increased risk of casualties and property loss from rare, severe weather events, the insurance industry should take five crucial steps toward evolving and continuing operations, including advanced analytic techniques and investments in alternative energy sources, say Stephen Brown and Irena Maier at Wilson Elser.

  • How Ill. Supreme Court Could Shape Statutory Violation Cases

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    In Fausett v. Walgreens, the Illinois Supreme Court will take up the question of whether a violation of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act satisfies the injury-in-fact requirement, and any outcome could significantly change the litigation landscape in Illinois, say Donald Patrick Eckler and Joshua Zhao at Freeman Mathis.

  • 3 Quirks Of New Jersey Insurance Coverage Law

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    There are a multitude of state-specific requirements and nuances that make New Jersey insurance law unique, including in the areas of duty to defend, reservation of rights and bad faith, say attorneys at Goldberg Segalla.

  • Conn. Insurers Should Note Stricter Market Exit Oversight

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    The Connecticut Insurance Department recently issued a bulletin that reflects a unique and stricter approach to insurers' market withdrawals and reductions in property and casualty business, making clear that it will not assess compliance based on an insurer's intent, but on the effect of the insurer's actions, says Elizabeth Retersdorf at Day Pitney.

  • Extreme Weather And Renewable Project Insurance Coverage

    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
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    The regularity and severity of extreme weather events driven by climate change are putting renewable energy projects increasingly at risk — so project owners, contractors and investors should understand the issues that can arise in these situations when seeking recovery under a builder's risk insurance policy, say Paul Ferland and Joshua Tumen at Cozen O'Connor.

  • Potential Relief For Nevada Insureds Is On The Horizon

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    A proposed regulation recently issued by the Nevada Division of Insurance would severely restrict the state's new law prohibiting burning-limits policies, enacting welcome changes to address businesses' concerns that the law will make it harder to obtain cost-effective liability insurance, says Sheri Thome at Wilson Elser.

  • Suits Likely Over Nevada Law Limiting Claimant Injury Exams

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    A new Nevada law placing barriers on the mental or physical examinations that defendants use to evaluate claimants' injuries will likely spur waves of litigation to reconcile it with existing rules and practice, says Michael Lowry at Wilson Elser.

  • Mass. Ruling Shows Value Of Additional Insured Specifics

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    A Massachusetts court’s recent D.F. Pray v. Wesco Insurance decision demonstrates that blanket additional insured endorsements can create issues with personal jurisdiction, so those named as additional insureds should require their lower-tier contractors to use specific endorsements, say Thomas Dunn and Sheya Rivard at Pierce Atwood.

  • Insurance Cos. Are Stretching Construction Standard Limits

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    In the construction sector, the importance of closely vetting downstream parties' insurance policies has never been more critical — owners and general contractors need to be on the lookout for ever broader carrier-specific expansions of standard insurance provisions that are perilous for risk transfer, says Eric Clarkson at Saxe Doernberger.

  • 7 Ways Telco Operators Can Approach Lead Cable Claims

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    A recent spotlight on the telecommunication industry shows that companies in the field have known for decades that lead-wrapped cables proliferate in their vast networks, which is likely to provoke prolonged and costly legal battles — but seven best practices can efficiently resolve claims and minimize damage, say consultants at AlixPartners.

  • What Wis. High Court Ruling Means For Coverage Analysis

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    Overturning insurance law precedent in 5 Walworth v. Engerman Contracting, the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently rejected the use of the economic loss doctrine and integrated systems analysis in commercial general liability cases, but a strongly worded concurrence could indicate that the court's opinion may have limited persuasive reach, say Laura Lin and Pierce MacConaghy at Simpson Thacher.