General Liability

  • March 15, 2024

    Fla. Jury Lets Insurer Off Hook For $12M Award

    A Florida federal jury on Friday found that National Indemnity Company of the South did not act in bad faith in its handling of claims against a Florida Keys construction and landscaping company and the company's employee over a fatal car crash that led to an $11.8 million judgment.

  • March 14, 2024

    'Secret Meeting' Settlement OK Draws Mich. Justices' Scrutiny

    A Michigan Supreme Court justice expressed discomfort Thursday with the idea that government officials could ratify a settlement in a closed-door meeting without consequences, in a case brought by three insurers against a county government's road agency trying to back out of a settlement to which it says it never agreed. 

  • March 14, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    A divided Colorado Supreme Court expanded application of the state's notice-prejudice rule, the Fourth Circuit tossed a COVID-19 coverage class action and the Eighth Circuit considered whether insurers' billing agreements with healthcare providers violated Minnesota's No-Fault Act. Here, Law360 takes a look at this week's top insurance news.

  • March 14, 2024

    8th Circ. Weighs If No-Bill Agreements Break Minn. Law

    The Eighth Circuit carefully considered arguments Thursday between six Farmers units and a policyholder class as to whether the carriers' agreements with healthcare providers restricted the class's medical expense coverage in violation of Minnesota law, giving little indication of which way it leaned.

  • March 14, 2024

    Justices To Consider Insurer's Right To Participate In Ch. 11

    The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments Tuesday on whether Truck Insurance Exchange retains standing to oppose the proposed reorganization plan of two bankrupt manufacturers facing a bevy of underlying asbestos injury claims, after the Fourth Circuit blocked Truck's opposition since the plan was "insurance neutral."

  • March 14, 2024

    Insurer Climate Info Partnership Ups Federal Monitor's Role

    A new data-sharing partnership between the U.S. Treasury and state insurance regulators reflects the government's growing interest in understanding and monitoring climate change risks to insurance markets, experts say, but questions remain over the extent to which the data will fully reflect the industry's risks and carbon footprint.

  • March 14, 2024

    4th Circ. Weighs Insurer's Duty To Defend Land-Use Dispute

    The Fourth Circuit will decide whether to overturn a West Virginia federal ruling allowing an insurer to avoid covering a sustainable farm that has been accused by the oil and gas company of blocking it from drilling wells in a $4 million state land-use dispute. Here, Law360 breaks down the case in advance of the forthcoming decision.

  • March 14, 2024

    Justices To Weigh Free Speech, Gov't Oversight In NRA Row

    The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments next week over whether a former New York state official illegally pressured financial institutions to cut ties to the National Rifle Association, setting up a showdown between free speech rights and regulatory oversight.

  • March 14, 2024

    An Insurance Attorney's Call To Military Service

    Jeffrey Bristol of Parrish Law PA is a self-described "later-in-life lawyer" wearing many hats because he has dedicated more than a decade to serving in multiple branches of the U.S. armed forces.

  • March 14, 2024

    Towers Watson Ruling Energizes Bump-Up Supporters, Critics

    A Virginia federal court decision freeing Towers Watson's insurers from covering shareholder suit settlements totaling $90 million has offered carriers support for their use of the so-called bump-up exclusion and prompted criticism from policyholders that the exclusion has gone too far.

  • March 13, 2024

    Aetna Can't Avoid Bias Suit Over Fertility Treatment Policy

    Aetna must face a proposed class action alleging it readily covers fertility treatments for infertile heterosexual women but forces non-heterosexual women to spend thousands out of pocket before paying for their treatments, with a Connecticut federal judge saying it doesn't matter if the insurer didn't control the health plan's terms.

  • March 12, 2024

    Geico Policyholders Lose Cert. Bid In Pandemic Premium Suit

    An Illinois federal judge on Tuesday denied class certification in litigation claiming that Geico profited off the COVID-19 pandemic by charging excessive car insurance premiums, ruling that the policyholders who filed the lawsuit had not shown that their damages model could be calculated on a classwide basis.

  • March 12, 2024

    Gunmaker, Insurer Settle Coverage Of NY 'Ghost Gun' Suits

    A gunmaker accused by the New York attorney general and two cities of facilitating the creation of so-called ghost guns has reached a coverage settlement with one of its insurers, the parties told a Florida federal court Tuesday, leaving the gunmaker's coverage claims against another insurer still pending.

  • March 12, 2024

    NJ Diocese Asks Court To Toss Insurer's Abuse Coverage Suit

    The Catholic Diocese of Trenton asked a New Jersey federal court to toss an insurer's action seeking to escape coverage for more than 200 suits alleging sexual abuse by clergy, saying the coverage dispute is "premature, vague, and ambiguous."

  • March 11, 2024

    Fla. Biz Owner Says Insurer Left Co. On Hook For $12M Award

    The owner of a Florida Keys construction and landscaping company told federal jurors Monday that it made no sense for National Indemnity Company of the South to tender the policy limits to his employee involved in a fatal crash while leaving the company exposed and forced to go to trial, where it was hit with an $11.8 million judgment.

  • March 11, 2024

    Travelers Owes No Coverage For Mo. Wall Mishap, Judge Says

    Travelers has no duty to provide over $1.4 million to a St. Louis area property developer for administrative expenses and loss of rental income stemming from a retaining wall failure, a Missouri federal court ruled Monday, finding such coverage didn't extend to additional insureds on a general contractor's policy.

  • March 08, 2024

    Exclusion Bars Coverage For Ga. Fair E. Coli Suit

    Nautilus Insurance Co. has no duty to defend or indemnify a harvest fair accused in an underlying state court suit of exposing two children to E. coli, a Georgia federal court has ruled, saying an infectious disease exclusion unambiguously precludes coverage.

  • March 08, 2024

    11th Circ. Declines To Hear Building Defect Coverage Dispute

    It's too early to determine whether a Florida federal court erred in its coverage determinations in a long-running construction defect insurance dispute, the Eleventh Circuit has ruled, finding that the "purported final judgment here does not dispose of all claims against all parties."

  • March 07, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The California Supreme Court heard COVID-19 coverage arguments, the Fifth Circuit ordered arbitration between a property owner and its domestic insurers, and a New Hampshire federal court said Liberty Mutual owes no defense for class action claims over a sleep machine cleaner.

  • March 07, 2024

    Insurer, Biz To Face Trial Over $11.8M Wrongful Death Verdict

    A Florida federal judge is sending to trial a coverage dispute between a construction and landscaping company and its insurer over an $11.8 million jury verdict for the wrongful deaths of four women after finding that there are questions of fact regarding whether the insurer acted in bad faith.

  • March 07, 2024

    Mixed Feelings On AI At Cyberinsurance Symposium

    Panelists at the Professional Liability Underwriting Society's cyber symposium in New York City on Tuesday and Wednesday were both excited and scared about generative artificial intelligence, acknowledging that it may be used in more complicated cyberattacks yet curious about the possibility the new market could bring. 

  • March 07, 2024

    Anti-Fraud Tool At Risk In 8th Circ. Billing Row, Carriers Say

    Insurers' ability to enter agreements that limit billings with healthcare providers, which they contend help combat insurance fraud, is up in the air in Minnesota as the Eighth Circuit gears up to hear arguments Thursday over whether such agreements violate a state law guaranteeing prompt automobile accident insurance payouts.

  • March 07, 2024

    Towers Watson Insurers Off Hook For $90M Merger Coverage

    Towers Watson's insurers do not need to cover settlements totaling $90 million in two shareholder suits stemming from the company's merger with Willis, a Virginia federal judge ruled, saying the transaction was barred by a so-called bump-up exclusion.

  • March 07, 2024

    Women In Insurance Law On Breaking Down Barriers

    Building a better environment for women in the legal industry starts from the top, women in insurance law told Law360. To mark International Women's Day, both junior and senior women attorneys share their experiences in the industry and offer words of advice.

  • March 06, 2024

    6th Circ. Orders Do-Over For Insurer's $3.3M Recoupment Row

    A Sixth Circuit panel on Tuesday revived a Chubb unit's bid to recoup costs from two other insurers after it helped windshield repair company Safelite pay for its defense against a competitor's suit, saying the lower court must conduct an analysis to determine whether the other carriers were prejudiced by late notice.

Expert Analysis

  • Exxon Ruling Highlights Additional Insured Coverage Conflict

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    Despite the Texas Supreme Court's recent decision in Exxon Mobil v. National Union, finding that contractual minimum insurance requirements cannot be used as a ceiling to bar umbrella coverage, the case nevertheless illustrates insurers' aggressive tactics to reduce the scope of additional insured coverage, say David Kroeger and Steven Tinetti at Jenner & Block.

  • Tackling Long-Tail Legacy Liability Risk: A Defendant's Toolkit

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    Johnson & Johnson was recently rebuffed in its efforts to employ the "Texas Two-Step," which is likely to affect this increasingly popular method to isolate and spin off large asbestos and talc liabilities, but companies have multiple options to reduce long-tail legacy liability risk, says Stephen Hoke at Hoke LLC.

  • 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.

  • Md. Abuse Law Makes Past Liability Coverage Review Vital

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    Maryland is the first state to allow an indefinite lookback period for previously time-barred lawsuits by victims of child sexual abuse against public and private entities — and lawsuits brought under the new law likely will implicate coverage under insurance policies issued over the past 80 years or longer, say Michael Levine and Olivia Bushman at Hunton.

  • 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.

  • NY Ruling Highlights Need For Specific Insurance Disclaimers

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    New York coverage counsel responsible for writing disclaimer letters should heed a recent appellate decision, Bahnuk v. Countryway Insurance, in which the letter sent to the plaintiff was deemed to be insufficiently specific, leaving the insurance company on the hook for coverage, says Dan Kohane at Hurwitz Fine.

  • Big Oil Certiorari Denial May Alter Climate Change Litigation

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's Monday decision not to review a handful of forum disputes in oil industry climate change litigation means that similar cases may face less corporate-friendly state courts, and insurers may see greater defense and damages exposures from Big Oil clients, say Dennis Anderson and Deepa Sutherland at Zelle.

  • 5 Tips For Filing Gov't Notices After Insurance Producer M&A

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    As insurance producer acquisition activity picks up in 2023, requiring a daunting process of notifying information changes to each Department of Insurance where the entity is licensed, certain best practices will help buyers alleviate frustration and avoid administrative actions and fines, say attorneys at Foley & Lardner.

  • Policyholder Lessons From Sandy No-Coverage Decision

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    A New York federal court recently decided that in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Madelaine Chocolate knew Great Northern Insurance’s all-risk policy offered no coverage for storm surge — an important reminder that policyholders should review policy language for ambiguities or anti-concurrent causation clauses, say Dennis Artese and Joshua Zelen at Anderson Kill.

  • Insureds' Notice Pleading May Be Insufficient In Federal Court

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    A recent New Jersey federal court ruling in Bauman v. Hanover Insurance held that bare-bones notice pleading was insufficient and dismissed the policyholder's coverage complaint, a reminder that courts may require more than an expression of general disagreement with an insurance company's denial letter to proceed with the case, says Eugene Killian at The Killian Firm.

  • 5th Circ. Offers Expert Opinion Guidance For Insurance Cases

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    A recent Fifth Circuit decision in Majestic Oil v. Lloyd's of London provides insight into how Texas' concurrent causation doctrine could affect insurance cases where the cause of damage is at issue, and raises considerations for litigants faced with new or revised expert reports after the deadline has passed, say Brian Scarbrough and Cianan Lesley at Jenner & Block.

  • DUI Liability Ruling Affirms SC Isn't Direct Action-Friendly

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    The Supreme Court of South Carolina's recent decision in Denson v. National Casualty not only clarifies the state's jurisprudence surrounding private rights of action and negligence per se, but also tacitly reinforces that South Carolina is not a direct-action state, say Anna Cathcart and Turner Albernaz at Phelps Dunbar.

  • Peephole Cam Case Lowers The Bar On NY Negligence Claims

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    A New York state appeals court's recent decision in Brown v. New York Design Center is significant because, barring a contrary state high court ruling, claims of negligent infliction of emotional distress need not demonstrate extreme and outrageous conduct, which could result in an uptick in such claims, say attorneys at Cahill Gordon.