Property

  • March 12, 2024

    La. Property Owners, Insurers Settle $5M Hurricane Ida Fight

    Lloyd's of London and other insurers and underwriters have agreed to settle claims by a group of New Orleans-area property owners who allege the insurers wrongly denied more than $5.1 million in claims from Hurricane Ida damage after the insurers demanded the dispute be resolved in arbitration.

  • March 12, 2024

    Maui Wildfire Case Sent Back To Hawaii State Court

    A Hawaii federal judge lobbed to state court a family's suit seeking to hold Maui County, energy utilities, telecommunication companies and others liable for property damage caused by a wildfire that left over 100 people dead, rejecting the defendants' argument this case should be removed and consolidated in federal court.

  • March 12, 2024

    Pa. Property Owner Knocks Insurer's Early Win Bid

    A Pennsylvania property owner urged a federal court to reject its insurer's bid for a pretrial win, arguing that a vacancy provision in its policy is ambiguous and does not preclude coverage of the $5 million in damages it seeks following a warehouse break-in.

  • March 11, 2024

    Prejudice Rule Applies To Property Claims, Colo. Justices Say

    A rule excusing some policyholders for filing late claims applies to occurrence-based, first-party homeowners' property policies, a divided Colorado Supreme Court held Monday, reversing two insurers' wins in a pair of coverage disputes over hail damage.

  • 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 11, 2024

    Atty, Marketing Biz Knock Call To Continue Hurricane Ad Suit

    A legal advertising company and an attorney are objecting to a Texas federal judge's recent decision in favor of a woman pressing class claims over legal advertising to Louisiana hurricane victims, arguing that the woman still hasn't shown concrete injury.

  • March 08, 2024

    State Farm Beats Spas' COVID Shutdown Suit At 4th Circ.

    The Fourth Circuit sided with State Farm insurance entities Friday in tossing a coverage dispute brought by a class of spa businesses alleging they were owed under "all risk" policies after COVID shutdown orders, with the court holding that recent precedent determined similar policies dealt with physical damage, not business closings.

  • 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

    5th Circ. Affirms Arbitration In Hurricane Coverage Feud

    The Fifth Circuit has ordered the owner of a New Orleans luxury apartment and retail complex to arbitrate a dispute with its domestic surplus lines insurers over coverage for $7 million in hurricane damage, ruling that arbitration is permitted under a carveout in conflicting Louisiana state law.

  • 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

    Texas Wildfires Strike Underinsured Agricultural Sector

    A series of Texas wildfires including one estimated to be the worst in the state's history are underscoring the increasing risk of severe natural catastrophes to underinsured populations and insurance markets already under stress, experts say.

  • 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

    Fla. Judge Relieves Insurer Of $1M Construction Defect Row

    An insurer has no obligation to defend or indemnify a general contractor or subcontractor in an over $1 million faulty construction dispute, a Florida federal judge ruled, finding that the subcontractor's policies contained an unambiguous "residential construction" exclusion that clearly barred coverage.

  • March 06, 2024

    Power Co. Can't Escape Explosion Fraud Claim

    An infrastructure supply company can't toss a fraud claim brought by an industrial company's insurers in a suit seeking to recoup $18.7 million in damages for a manufacturing facility explosion, an Ohio federal court ruled, finding that the carriers can bring both a breach of contract claim and a fraud claim.

  • March 05, 2024

    Calif. Justice Asks Why COVID Triggers Insurance But Not Flu

    A California Supreme Court justice appeared skeptical during a hearing Tuesday that COVID-19's presence fulfills the "physical loss or damage" requirement in commercial property insurance policies under Golden State law, questioning whether COVID-19 is different from the flu with respect to property coverage and calling asbestos litigation "far afield."

  • March 04, 2024

    5th Circ. Says Hurricane Coverage Battle Must Be Arbitrated

    A Louisiana property owner and its eight domestic insurers must arbitrate the owner's claims that they mishandled and delayed paying its Hurricane Laura property damage claim in bad faith, the Fifth Circuit ruled Monday, reversing a district court's decision that found an arbitration provision at issue unenforceable.

  • March 04, 2024

    Arizona Iced Tea Asks 2nd Circ. To Affirm Audit Expense Win

    The maker of Arizona Iced Tea told the Second Circuit that Hanover Insurance Co. must cover additional audit expenses it incurred after a power surge erased two years' worth of financial data, arguing its "period of restoration" ended when the audit concluded, not when replacement accounting software was in place.

  • February 29, 2024

    9th Circ. Sends COVID-19 Coverage Row Back To Tribal Court

    A Ninth Circuit panel unanimously affirmed the Suquamish Tribal Court's jurisdiction over a COVID-19 coverage dispute, finding in a published opinion Thursday that although the tribe's insurers weren't present on its land, a consensual business relationship means tribal law applies.

  • February 29, 2024

    State Farm Must Face Bad Faith Claims In $3M Crash Row

    A Florida appeals court on Wednesday clarified a prior ruling reviving bad faith claims against State Farm for rejecting an offer to settle a car crash injury suit that led to a $3 million verdict, saying the insurer could still have acted in bad faith in handling the settlement offer even if it had no obligation to accept it.

  • February 29, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The Texas Supreme Court found that a handful of insurers may be on the hook for a $220 million bankruptcy settlement, while another state Supreme Court said it will take on underpayment claims against Geico, as insurance experts heed emerging privacy risks and prepare for more PFAS litigation. Here, Law360 takes a look at this week's top insurance news.

  • February 29, 2024

    Valencia Fire Renews Concerns Over Materials, Insurance

    A deadly apartment fire in Valencia, Spain, is drawing renewed attention to the use of flammable materials on building exteriors, a global problem that insurance experts say implicates complicated webs of liability and a need for strong government oversight.

  • February 29, 2024

    Texas Justices' Unusual Remedy Presents A Win For Insurers

    The Texas Supreme Court handed several carriers a victory in its ruling that a $220 million settlement between now-bankrupt Cobalt International Energy Inc. and its investors is not binding on the energy company's insurers to establish coverage, a decision notable for the unusual relief granted by the state justices, experts say.

  • February 29, 2024

    New AI Risks Pressure Policyholders To Fill Coverage Gaps

    Growing scrutiny from the public and regulators in the U.S. over artificial intelligence use and rising threats of AI-enabled schemes are sending insurance experts scrambling to evaluate their coverage options in a rapidly changing risk environment.

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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