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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®


California High Court Is Set To Rule On Coverage For Molestation Suit
SAN FRANCISCO - An employer in an April 10 reply brief urges the California Supreme Court to find that claims against an employer for negligent hiring, retention and supervision of its employee qualify as an "occurrence" under the employer's commercial general liability (CGL) policy and that an "accident" can include unintended consequences of the employer's intentional acts (Liberty Surplus Insurance Corporation, et al. v. Ledesma and Meyer Construction Company, Inc., et al., No. S236765, Calif. Sup.).

Insurer: Facebook IPO Class Action Not Barred By Professional Services Exclusion
NEW YORK - An excess errors and omissions (E&O) insurer has asked the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower court's holding that a directors and officers (D&O) liability insurance policy's professional services exclusion unambiguously bars coverage for claims in an underlying Facebook IPO class action lawsuit (Beazley Insurance Co. Inc. v. Ace American Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-2812, 2nd Cir.).

Estate: Court Erred In Ruling Work-Related Death Not Covered By Policy
CINCINNATI - The estate of a man who died in a work-related incident argues that the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should reverse a decision by a district court that held that an insurer did not breach its contract when it denied the family of the deceased man coverage (The Estate of Jeffrey Lynn Filek v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, Pa., No. 16-2517, 6th Cir.).

Excess Insurer Appeals Ruling In Suit Over $6.7M Construction Defects Settlement
DENVER - An excess insurer has asked the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling in favor of a primary commercial general liability insurer in a dispute over coverage for an underlying $6.7 million settlement over construction defects claims against a ski area developer insured (Federal Insurance Co. v. National Union, No. 16-1438, 10th Cir.).

Parties Debate Policy Language At 11th Circuit In Death Benefit Lawsuit
ATLANTA - Attorneys for a woman and an insurance company in May 19 oral arguments debated before the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals the language in a life insurance policy and whether it supported a widow's claim for $2.25 million in benefits and whether her lawsuit was untimely filed. The attorneys also disputed whether the policy benefit was properly denied based on disputed evidence the insurer said showed that the deceased had committed suicide (Melinda Webb v. Liberty Life Assurance Company, No. 14-565, 11th Cir.).

Insurer: Government Misinterprets Law In ACA Risk-Corridor Spat
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The government attempts to muddle how its obligations form in attempting to dispel a case alleging underpayment under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) risk-corridor program, an insurer told a federal judge May 15 (Health Republic Insurance Co. v. The United States of America, No. 16-259, Fed. Clms.).

United States Tells Court ACA Risk Corridor Isn't Open-Ended Liability
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) risk corridors are not now and were never intended to be an unlimited source of funds for covering insurers' losses, as the text and history of the law make clear, the United States told a federal appeals court on April 24 (Land of Lincoln Mutual Health Insurance Co. v. The United States of America, No. 17-1224, Fed. Cir.).

Coverage Provisions, Exclusions Are Ambiguous, Appellant Argues To 8th Circuit
ST. LOUIS - A man who was acquitted of a crime after spending eight months in prison has asked the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's finding that a homeowners insurer has no duty to cover a $500,000 judgment in his favor stemming from his malicious prosecution and abuse-of-process claims against its insured (Farmers Insurance Co v. Robert Frederickson, No. 16-4214, 8th Cir.).

Insured: Insurer Is Liable Under 'Collapse' Provisions For Hidden Decay Damages
SEATTLE - An insured has asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling that an insurer is not liable for damage to apartments from hidden decay under its policies' "collapse" provisions (American Economy Insurance Co. v. CHL, LLC, No. 16-35606, 9th Cir.).

Injured Attorney Says Trial Court Erred In Trial Of His Underinsured Motorist Case
PHILADELPHIA - A plaintiff-attorney who was injured in a rear-end car accident on Feb. 21 told the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that a trial court erred in allowing a jury to decide if he was injured and in admitting financial records from his practice (Richard C. Angino, et al. v. The Cincinnati Insurance Company, No. 16-4063, 3rd Cir.).

Briefs Filed In Nevada Supreme Court In Blanket Policy Coverage Dispute
CARSON CITY, Nev. - The final briefs were filed April 17 in a Nevada Supreme Court appeal in which an insured is seeking additional coverage, beyond the $200,000 already paid, for a warehouse burglary, arguing that he had requested that his $1.5 million policy covering two sites was to be a blanket policy (MG&S Enterprise, LLC v. Travelers Casualty Insurance Company of America, et al., No. 69622, Nev. Sup.).

Court Wrongly Refused To Enforce Exclusion In Coverage Dispute, Insurer Says
ATLANTA - An insurance company contends that a federal court erroneously refused to enforce the corrosion exclusion in a policy based on an improper test of causation, and it asks the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse the lower court's ruling (IAG LLC v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, No. 16-10580, 11th Cir.).

9th Circuit Asked To Decide Whether Summary Judgment Was Proper In Bad Faith Suit
SAN FRANCISCO - Parties in an insurance dispute asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals recently to determine whether a federal district court erred in granting an insurer's motion for summary judgment on claims that it breached its duty to defend and acted in bad faith in denying coverage under an indemnity insurance policy (Sunrise Specialty Co. Inc., et al. v. Scottsdale Insurance Co., No. 16-16856, 9th Cir.).

Insurer Says No Defense Owed For Suit Alleging Mattresses Emitted Chemical Odor
SAN FRANCISCO - An insurer has no duty to defend an underlying consumer class action lawsuit alleging that an insured's mattresses were defective because the underlying suit alleges only intentional conduct on the part of the insured and does not allege an accident as required by the policy at issue, the insurer maintains in an April 14 reply brief filed in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Hartford Fire Insurance Co. v. Tempur-Sealy International Inc., et al., No. 16-16056, 9th Cir.).

Insureds Ask 8th Circuit To Reverse Ruling In Breach Of Contract Suit Over Fire Loss
ST. LOUIS - Insureds have filed an appeal in the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals seeking to overturn a lower federal court's grant of an insurer's motion for judgment as a matter of law in a coverage dispute arising from the insureds' alleged fire loss (Azim Aziz and Kina Aziz v. Allstate Insurance Co., No. 16-3888, 8th Cir.).

Parties Debate Whether Defendant Pleaded Negligence Claim In Insurance Dispute
NEW ORLEANS - Parties in an insurance dispute recently asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to determine whether a federal district court erred in ruling that a third-party defendant failed to properly plead her negligence claim against an insurer and abused its discretion in denying the defendant's motion for leave to amend her complaint to add a claim for bad faith (Jenny Berry v. Banner Life Insurance Co., No. 16-51198, 5th Cir.).

Malicious Prosecution Was Not Committed During Policy Period, Excess Insurer Says
CINCINNATI - An excess insurer has asked the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling that ordered it to reimburse the $3.25 million a second excess insurer contributed to an underlying settlement of a malicious prosecution lawsuit against the city of Barberton, Ohio, and its police officers (Selective Ins. Co. v. RLI Ins. Co., 16-4199, 6th Cir.).

State Farm Tells Texas Supreme Court ESI Protocol Is Burdensome
AUSTIN, Texas - In an April 21 brief to the Texas Supreme Court, filed in response to a post-oral argument brief by the real parties in interest in a dispute over the discovery submission form for electronically stored information (ESI) in an insurance coverage lawsuit, an insurer argues that a trial court's requirement that ESI submission be in the form requested by the plaintiffs did not properly balance relevance, needs and burdens under Texas law (In re State Farm Lloyds, No. 15-0903, Texas Sup.).

Insurer Says It Has Complied With Reinsurer's Request For Docs About Asbestos Coverage
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - In response to a reinsurer's request for documents concerning primary and umbrella policies at issue in asbestos coverage dispute, an insurer argues to a New York federal court in an April 7 brief that it has provided admissions, denials, responses and objections regarding the documents (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. R&Q Reinsurance Co., No. 15-cv-270, N.D. N.Y.).

Insured Seeks En Banc Rehearing Of 3rd Circuit's Asbestos Exclusion Ruling
PHILADELPHIA - An insured seeking coverage for underlying asbestos-related claims filed against it on May 5 filed a petition for en banc rehearing in the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, arguing that the appeals panel's finding that a policy's asbestos exclusion is enforceable was in error (General Refractories Company v. First State Insurance Co., et al., No. 15-3409, 3rd Cir.).

Injured Party: Insurer Can't Deny Coverage Under Unlicensed Operator Exclusion
PHILADELPHIA - Where a licensed owner of a vehicle and an unlicensed operator are both liable for an accident caused by the unlicensed operator, the owner's insurer can't fully disclaim coverage based on its unlicensed operator exclusion, an injured party claims in his appellant brief filed Feb. 7 in the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Richard Duncan v. Omni Insurance Company, No. 16-3834, 3rd Cir.).

Woman Says Her Contract Claim Against Insurer Is Not Precluded
BOSTON - A Massachusetts woman argues that she has a legitimate right to withdraw from an annuity contract she entered with an insurance company, and she contends that the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should reverse a lower court's decision that dismissed her claim against the insurer because issue preclusion does not apply (Yana Edquist v. Jackson National Life Insurance Co., No. 16-2056, 1st Cir.).

Parties Argue In 7th Circuit Over Policy Coverage For Urea Use Settlement
CHICAGO - Former owners of a whey products company and an insurer that provided insurance coverage for the sale of the company recently submitted their arguments before the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals as to whether a district court properly granted summary judgment for an insurer in relation to coverage for the settlement of an underlying lawsuit that was threatened against them (Daniel Ratajczak v. Beazley Solutions Ltd., No. 16-3418, 7th Cir.).

Court Confused Reporting Requirement With Reporting Deadline, Insured Argues
CINCINNATI - A residential landlord insured has asked the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling in favor of a tenant-discrimination liability insurer in a coverage dispute arising from a housing discrimination charge brought against the insured (GMS Management v. Evanston Ins. Co., No. 16-4018, 6th Cir.).

2 Appellants Tell Nevada Supreme Court That Each Is Due Attorney Fees
CARSON CITY, Nev. - Two women injured in a car accident on Feb. 7 asked the Nevada Supreme Court to rule that they are entitled to $3,000 each in attorney fees rather than $3,000 together in their underinsured motorist claim against Progressive Northern Insurance Co. (Angelica Rios, et al. v. Progressive Northern Insurance Company, No. 71225, Nev. Sup.).

Rescission Ends Coverage For Lead Paint Injuries, Insurer Says To 4th Circuit
RICHMOND, Va. - Having been rescinded, a commercial general liability insurance policy did not provide coverage for lead paint claims as a judgment creditor was not an intended beneficiary of the policies at the time of rescission, the insurer argues in a March 30 brief to the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (CX Reinsurance Co. Ltd. v. Brayon Loyal, No. 16-2180, 4th Cir.).

No Claim For Wrongful Act; No Coverage, Insurer Argues To Federal Court
TULSA, Okla. - An insurer recently argued to an Oklahoma federal court that an underlying breach of contract lawsuit brought against its insured by a former business partner fails to allege a wrongful act to trigger coverage under a professional liability insurance policy (Doug Schwegman, d/b/a Schwegman Insurance and Financial Services v. Continental Casualty Co., No. 16-0730, N.D. Okla.).

Reinsurer, Alleged Reinsured Argue Over What Constitutes Elements Of Agreement
PHILADELPHIA - A reinsurer and its alleged reinsured countered each other recently in a federal court in Pennsylvania over whether the alleged reinsured is incorrect in its assertions regarding a cession statement, which the reinsurer says is an essential element of the parties' reinsurance agreement (R&Q Reinsurance Company v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Insurance Company, No. 16-cv-01473, E.D. Pa.).

Insurer Intervenes In Suit Alleging Sexual Assault By Rutgers Football Player
TRENTON, N.J. - A homeowners insurer filed a declaratory judgment complaint in federal court in New Jersey on April 21 after intervening in a lawsuit alleging that two Rutgers University students, including one football player, sexually assault another student on campus (K.L. v. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, et al., No. 16-9270, D. N.J.).