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Preview: LexisNexis® Mealey's™ Insurance Pleadings Legal News

LexisNexis® Mealey's™ Insurance Pleadings Legal News

Headline Insurance Pleadings Legal News from LexisNexis®


Policyholders Seek Right To Sue For Financial Elder Abuse Under Oregon Law
SALEM, Ore. - An insurer is not exempt from liability under Oregon state law for civil financial elder abuse, individuals who have purchased long-term care insurance policies from Bankers Life and Casualty Co. claim in a May 10 opening brief filed in the Oregon Supreme Court (Lorraine Bates, et al. v. Bankers Life and Casualty Company, et al., No. CA S064742, Ore. Sup.).

Rescission Of Professional Liability Policy Was Not Warranted, Insured Argues
HELENA, Mont. - A law firm insured and one of its attorneys have asked the Montana Supreme Court to find that a lower court erred in rescinding a professional liability insurance policy and declaring it void ab initio as to innocent insureds and innocent victims due to another insured's failure to disclose that he stole client money (ALPS Property & Casualty Insurance Co. v. McLean & McLean, PLLP, et al., No. DA 16-0739, Mont. Sup.).

Insurers Dispute Availability Of Hospital Liability Coverage Before 2nd Circuit
NEW YORK- Several insurers recently submitted briefs to the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, disputing whether numerous underlying lawsuits filed against a hospital in relation to alleged sexual abuse committed by one of its former medical employees implicated coverage under a Hospital Professional Liability (HPL) policy (Pacific Employers Insurance Co. v. St. Francis Care Inc., et al., 16-2747, 2nd Cir.).

Insurer Asks Texas High Court To Reverse Ruling Awarding Judgment To Couple
AUSTIN, Texas - State Farm Lloyds told the Texas Supreme Court in a brief filed Feb. 21 that a trial court judge's ruling awarding extracontractual damages to a couple after a jury found that they breached the terms of an insurance policy should be reversed because it is inconsistent with existing precedent (State Farm Lloyds v. Candelario Fuentes, et al., No. 16-0369, Texas Sup.).

Surety Cannot Recover Attorney Fees, Appellant Argues To Nevada Supreme Court
LAS VEGAS - An appellant has asked the Nevada Supreme Court to reverse a lower court's finding that an insurer that issued a Motor Vehicles Dealer's License Bond to an automobile dealership can recover the attorney fees that it incurred in defending an underlying claim against the bond (Zabeti vs. Great American Ins. Co., No. 70461, Nev. Sup.).

Attorneys Urge 10th Circuit To Reverse Sanctions Ruling In Insurance Coverage Case
DENVER - Two attorneys who were retained to represent a homeowners association in an insurance coverage dispute argue that the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should reverse a lower court's sanctions ruling against them pertaining to their relationship with the insurance appraiser who worked on the homeowners association claim because the award is "erroneous" (Auto-Owners Insurance Company v. Summit Park Townhome Association, No. 16-1348, 10th Cir.).

Parties In Real Estate Fraud Dispute Appeal No Coverage Ruling To 11th Circuit
ATLANTA - Parties in an underlying real estate fraud dispute recently asked the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling that commercial general liability insurers are not liable for any amount of a $40 million consent judgment entered against the insured (Attorney's Title Insurance Fund, et al. v. Travelers Indemnity Company of Connecticut, et al., No. 16-15386, 11th Cir.).

Steel Maker Says Settlement With Insurer Triggered Reinsurer's Indemnity Duties
NEW YORK - A steel maker argues in its July 21 reply brief to a New York federal court that its settlement agreement with an insurer triggered a reinsurer's indemnity obligations under an arbitration award because it liquidated the steel maker's claim (National Indemnity Co. v. IRB Brasil Resseguros S.A., No. 15-3975, S.D. N.Y.).

5th Circuit Should Reverse Ruling That Overturned Jury Verdict, Insurer Says
NEW ORLEANS - An insurer is asking the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a district court's judgment of law that was against a jury verdict in an insurance dispute, contending that the district court committed error because "substantial evidence supported the jury's finding" that the insured breached the insurance policy's cooperation condition by not providing records of its financial performance, relevant to arson that damaged the insured's restaurant (Resie's Chicken & Waffles Restaurant, et al. v. Acceptance Indemnity Company, et al., No. 16-20680, 5th Cir.).

Insured Seeks Finding That Coverage Is Owed For Water Damages
SEATTLE - An insurer owes coverage for hidden damages caused by water intrusion to insured condominiums because the damages occurred during the applicable policy periods and no policy exclusions bar coverage, an insured claims in a May 26 complaint filed in Washington federal court (Edmonds Seacrest Homeowners Association v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., No. 17-833, W.D. Wash.).

Parties Dispute Whether Defense Costs, Settlement Were Covered Under Policy
CHICAGO - A banking institution and an insurer that sold it a bankers professional liability (BPL) policy recently submitted their arguments before the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals over whether defense costs and a settlement reached in an underlying lawsuit were excluded under the policy (BancorpSouth Inc. v. Federal Insurance Co., No. 17-1425, 7th Cir.).

Allstate Asks 3rd Circuit To Overturn Verdict For Insured In Collapsed Facade Suit
PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania federal jury erred when it returned a verdict in favor of an insured after the stone facade on her home collapsed because the main cause of the collapse is excluded under the homeowners policy, the insurer argues in an appellant brief filed Feb. 23 in the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Ahsaki Gordon, et al. v. Allstate Property and Casualty Insurance Company, No. 16-3671, 3rd Cir.).

Hutterite Colony Seeks UIM Coverage For 2 Members Not Named On Policy
HELENA, Mont. - Two members of a Hutterite colony, Kilby Butte Colony, who were injured in an auto accident while traveling in a vehicle owned by a Canadian Hutterite colony should be covered under the Kilby Butte's underinsured motorist insurance (UIM) coverage because individual colony members cannot own colony vehicles or carry their own insurance, creating an "illusory coverage" by the insurer, Kilby Butte argues in an appellant reply brief filed June 29 in the Montana Supreme Court (Kilby Butte Colony, Inc. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, No. DA 17-0162, Mont. Sup.).

State Appeals Court Asked To Decide Whether Bad Faith Suit Dismissal Was Proper
CARSON CITY, Nev. - Parties in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit asked the Nevada Court of Appeals recently to determine whether a trial court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of an insurer in an automobile insurance dispute and whether the trial court improperly denied the insured's motion for leave to file a third amended complaint (Valgene Sutherland v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., No. 71389, Nev. App.).

Court Failed To Properly Apply New Jersey's Omnibus Statute, CGL Insurer Argues
NEW YORK - A commercial general liability insurer has asked the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling in favor of two business auto liability insurers in a dispute over coverage for an underlying fatal injury that occurred at a construction site (Employers Insurance Company of Wausau v. Harleysville Preferred Insurance Co. et al., 16-906, 2nd Cir.).

Arbitrator Should Decide Reinsurance Dispute, Insurer Asserts To Federal Court
MONTGOMERY, Ala. - An arbitrator should decide whether a reinsurer breached a reinsurance treaty by not paying an insurer's claim following an underlying $1.3 million settlement, the insurer argues to an Alabama federal court in its June 15 reply brief (Alabama Municipal Insurance Corp. v. Munich Reinsurance America Inc., No. 16-cv-00948, M.D. Ala.).

Brokerage Company Says Foreign Specialty Reinsurer's $15M Bond Remains Defective
NEW YORK - A defunct brokerage company argues in its July 11 reply brief with a New York federal bankruptcy court that a foreign specialty reinsurer's $15 million bond as part of the reinsurer's effort to arbitrate a coverage dispute in Bermuda should be struck because the bond is defective (In re: MF Global Holdings Ltd., et al., MF Global Holdings Ltd. as plan administrator, and MF Global Assigned Assets LLC v. Allied World Assurance Company Ltd., et al., Chapter 11 No. 11-15059, Adv. Proc. No. 16-01251, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).

Insured Says Misrepresentation Of Value Of Lost Property Was Not Material
DETROIT - An insured's alleged misrepresentation of the value of property that was stolen did not warrant an insurance company's rescission of the policy, a company tells the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in seeking reversal of a federal judge in Michigan's decision to award summary judgment to ACE American Insurance Co (AMI Stamping LLC v. ACE American Insurance Company, et al., No. 16-2341, 6th Cir.).

Insured Appeals Ruling In Aviation Insurer's Favor In Bad Faith Dispute
SAN FRANCISCO - An insured has asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling in favor of an aviation insurer in a coverage dispute arising from damage to one of the insured's tanker aircrafts (Minden Air Corporation v. Starr Indemnity & Liability Co., 16-15712, 9th Cir.).

Disability Claimant Says 6th Circuit's Preemption Decision Must Be Reviewed
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals incorrectly determined that a negligence claim is completely preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act because the Sixth Circuit's reasoning conflicts with the U.S. Supreme Court's analysis for complete preemption, a disability claimant says in a May 22 petition for writ of certiorari filed in the high court (Samantha Milby v. MCMC LLC, No. 16-1409, U.S. Sup., 2017 U.S. S. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 1860).

Parties Debate Continuous Trigger, Policy Language At Ohio Supreme Court
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio Supreme Court heard oral arguments June 20 in a case involving a dispute over whether a commercial general liability policy is triggered by damage that was caused by a contractor who was unaware of it at the time he installed a manufactured home. The parties also debated whether the circumstances of the case met the conditions for a continuous trigger of the policy (Lightning Road Mutual Insurance Co. v. Robert Southworth, et al., No. 2016-1116, Ohio Sup.).

Insured Seeks Attorney Fees For The 2nd Time Following UIM Verdict
HELENA, Mont. - An insured is entitled to attorney fees following a verdict in her favor on an underinsured motorist (UIM) claim, the insured argues in her May 2 appellant reply brief filed in the Montana Supreme Court, claiming that the high court, in her previous appeal, already established that UIM claims are subject to the insurance exception to the American Rule (Tanya L. Mlekush v. Farmers Insurance Exchange, No. 16-0670, Mont. Sup.).

Wine/Liquor Theft Barred By Dishonest Acts Exclusion, Insurer Argues To 2nd Circuit
NEW YORK - An insurer has asked the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's finding that a carrier exception to an insurance policy's dishonest acts exclusion applies to allow coverage for an insured's $1,155,480 claim arising from 4,095 cases of allegedly stolen wine and liquor (Warehouse Wines & Spirits v. Travelers Property Casualty Co., 16-2611, 2nd Cir.).

Legal Malpractice Plaintiff Says Case Involved More Than 1 Claim Under Policy
PHILADELPHIA - The victorious plaintiff in a legal malpractice case on Feb. 3 asked the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to rule that his case contains more than one claim in order to avoid the near-depletion of the defendant's malpractice insurance coverage (Westport Insurance Co. v. Anastasios Papadopoulos, No. 16-3705, 3rd Cir.).

Professional Services Exclusion Does Not Bar Coverage, Insured Tells 9th Circuit
SAN FRANCISCO - An insured has asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's finding that coverage for an underlying qui tam action brought against it under the False Claims Act (FCA) is barred because the claims arose out of its professional services (HotChalk Inc. v. Scottsdale Insurance Co., No. 16-17287, 9th Cir.).

Insurers Dispute Coverage For Settlement Of Shooting Death In 8th Circuit
ST. LOUIS - An insurer on Feb. 22 argued in a brief to the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that the indemnity provision in a management agreement between an apartment complex owner and its manager does not control insurance priority in a dispute over coverage of a wrongful death settlement (Federal Ins. Co v. Great American Ins. Co., 16-4045, 8th Cir.).

Appellant Asks 6th Circuit To Reverse Summary Judgment Ruling In Favor Of FDIC
CINCINNATI - An executor of a promissory note argued to the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Dec. 6 brief that, at a minimum, there is a genuine issue of material fact regarding the purpose for which the note was delivered to a now failed bank, and, as a result, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) should not have been granted summary judgment in its lawsuit alleging breach of contract and unjust enrichment against the executor (Federal Deposit Insurance Co. v. James Ashmore, 15-6299, 6th Cir.).

Appellant Says Oklahoma Law Should Be Applied In Personal Injury Dispute
NEW ORLEANS - An insured's assignee whose lungs were damaged by the inhalation of an excess amount of chlorine in a hotel's hot tub argues in a May 25 reply brief, filed in the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, that a Texas federal court erred in applying Texas law rather than Oklahoma law and by not allowing the assignee to conduct of choice-of-law analysis before granting the insurer's motion to dismiss (Wesley Howard v. Maxum Indemnity Co., No. 16-11746, 5th Cir.).

Defendants Oppose Request For Discovery Of Tax Returns, Bank Records As To Reinsurer
ATLANTA - In a case over fraudulent transfers of reinsurance funds, various individual defendants in a May 18 brief oppose a request by insurers for a Georgia federal court to compel them to provide tax returns and bank account records pertaining to a reinsurer because the motion is premature (Canal Insurance Co. and Canal Indemnity Co. v. Golden Isles Reinsurance Company Ltd, et al., No. 15-cv-03331, N.D. Ga.).

Brazilian Reinsurer Says No Duty To Indemnify $5M Under Arbitration Award
NEW YORK - A Brazilian reinsurer on June 14 argued that a New York federal court should deny an insurer's request for $5 million under an arbitration award in order to pay a settlement it reached with a steelmaker because the settlement does not require reinsurance coverage (National Indemnity Co. v. IRB Brasil Resseguros S.A., No. 15-3975, S.D. N.Y.).