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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®


Insurer: Texas High Court Should Hear Fraud Case Involving Restitution Lien
AUSTIN, Texas - An insurance company is asking the Texas Supreme Court to hear a case in which the insurer argues that it was damaged by a fraudulent transfer scheme in which a woman converted sales proceeds from her home in Texas and sent that money to a friend in another state for safe keeping because the homeowner knew that her property was encumbered by a federal restitution lien (Old Republic National Title Insurance Company, a subrogee of Chitra Chandrasekaran v. Robin W. Goldsmith, No. 17-0245, Texas Sup.).

Blind Dairy Worker Says Judge Had Authority To Review Claim Denial
LAS VEGAS - A dairy worker who claims that he went blind after being exposed to toxic chemicals while on the job in 2014 asked the Nevada Supreme Court on Sept. 28 to order a trial court judge to review an appeals officer's decision finding that there was insufficient medical evidence to support his workers' compensation claim, arguing that the judge has the authority to reverse the decision (Kenneth J. Olson v. Anderson Dairy Inc., et al., No. 72457, Nev. Sup.).

Reinsurer Questions Supreme Court On Arbitration Clause In Reinsurance Agreement
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A reinsurer on Nov. 9 petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to answer whether "an argument that applies equally" to an arbitration clause under a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) "as a whole is sufficient to specifically challenge a delegation provision" under Rent-A-Ctr., W., Inc. v. Jackson, 561 U.S. 63, 70 (2010) (Applied Underwriters Captive Risk Assurance Company Inc. v. Minnieland Private Day School Inc., No. 17-717, U.S. Sup., 2017 U.S. S. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 4426).

Parties Argue In Montana High Court Whether Insurers Could Reduce Settlement
HELENA, Mont. - An insured and insurers recently submitted arguments before the Montana Supreme Court, disputing whether a trial court's decision that the insurers were not wrong in taking a collateral source reduction against the insured's underlying vehicle accident settlement should be overturned (Marcia Marshall v. Safeco Insurance Company of Illinois, et al., DA 17-0384, Mont. Sup.).

Insurer Tells 7th Circuit That Appeal Over Settlement Enforcement Is Untimely
CHICAGO - A disability insurance company told the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 28 that a man's appeal of an order denying his motion for a rehearing on the enforcement of a settlement agreement should be dismissed because it was untimely (Clifford Sam Gibbons v. MONY Life Insurance Company and Disability Management Co., Nos. 17-1785, 17-3365, 7th Cir.).

Consumer Class Action Alleges Covered Disparagement Claim, Insured Argues
SAN FRANCISCO - A shampoo manufacturer insured has asked a California appeals court to find that an underlying consumer class action alleging that it falsely advertised its hair products as "organic" triggers a coverage claim for disparagement under its insurance policy (Hartford Casualty Insurance Company v. Vogue International, LLC, et al., No. A150921, Calif. App., 1st Dist.).

Coverage Row Over Unlawful Disclosure Claims Against Doctor Argued In 1st Circuit
BOSTON - A federal court correctly determined that, based on terms in a professional liability policy, an insurer has no duty to defend an insured doctor against claims by his ex-wife that he unlawfully disclosed her confidential health care information, the insurer tells the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Nov. 22 response brief (Medical Mutual Insurance Company of Maine, Inc. v. Douglas Burka, 17-1872, 1st Cir.).

Office Depot: AIG Owes Duty To Defend, Indemnify In Underlying Qui Tam Case
SAN FRANCISCO - Office Depot Inc. is asking the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a ruling in which a district court held that AIG Specialty Insurance Co. does not have a duty to defend or indemnify the company in an underlying qui tam lawsuit (Office Depot Inc. v. v. AIG Specialty Insurance Company, No. 17-55125, 9th Cir.).

Flood Sublimit Applies To $25M 'Time Element Losses,' Insurer Argues To 6th Circuit
CINCINNATI - An insurer argued to the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that there are "multiple, reinforcing provisions" in an insurance policy that unambiguously make clear that a high hazard flood sublimit applies to all coverage for losses caused by a flood, including an insured's alleged $25 million "time element losses" arising from a flood in Thailand (Federal-Mogul Corp. v. Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania, Nos. 17-1649 and 17-1716, 6th Cir.).

Delivery Driver, Estate Seek Accident Coverage Under Furniture Company's Policy
RICHMOND, Va. - A furniture delivery driver working as an independent contractor and the estate of his passenger are set to present oral arguments to the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 23 seeking underinsured insured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage from the furniture company's insurer (Bruce Levine, et al. v. Employers Insurance Company of Wausau, et al., Nos. 17-1342 and 17-1432, 4th Cir.).

Insurance Company, Agent Tell Texas High Court That Suit Over Premiums Is Barred
AUSTIN, Texas - An insured who transferred ownership of his three life insurance policies to a trustee has no grounds to sue over an alleged promise that he would no longer pay premiums after one lump payment as he relinquished his rights to the policy and his claims were released in a nationwide class action settlement, the insurer and its agent argue in an opening brief filed Oct. 2 in the Texas Supreme Court (The Rogers Agency, et al. v. Michael D. Lee, No. 17-0230, Texas Sup.).

Parties Dispute Whether Fees Were Proper In Life Insurance Coverage Case
CHICAGO - An insurer and the widow of a deceased insured recently submitted briefs in the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals disputing whether an Illinois federal court erred in awarding the widow fees under the Illinois Insurance Code in relation to the insurer's failure to attach certain contracts to its response to a motion for judgment on the pleadings (Norma Cooke v. Jackson National Life Insurance, 17-2080, 7th Cir.).

Insured Asks 8th Circuit To Find Coverage Exists For Construction Defects Suit
CINCINNATI - A developer and general contractor recently asked the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's finding that its insurer has no duty to defend it against a homeowners association's claims in an underlying defective construction lawsuit, contending that there was a "rational possibility" that the homeowners association sought damages that were covered by the policy (Clarke Company Limited v. American Family Mutual Insurance Co., No. 17-2418, 8th Cir.).

Insurers: Federal Court Has 'Unflagging Obligation' To Exercise Jurisdiction
SAN FRANCISCO - Primary and first-layer excess insurers argue in a recent brief to the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that because they raised a "facially non-frivolous" and "compelling" argument in favor of arbitration, a federal district court should have fully adjudicated their motion to compel arbitration instead of remanding the lawsuit to California court (SFA Group v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyds London, et al., No. 16-56467, 9th Cir.).

Company: Delaware Court Should Order Insurer To Pay It $9M For Bad Faith Damages
WILMINGTON, Del. - A company recently asked the Delaware Superior Court to find an insurer liable for bad faith and order the carrier to reimburse it for $9 million in damages, which the company contends it suffered as a result of the insurer's "bad faith misrepresentations" (Homeland Insurance Company of New York v. CorVel Corporation, No. N11C-01-089-ALR, Del. Super.).

Insurer Says Insured Does Not Rely On Reinsurance Agreements In $26M Case
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A financial services company abandoned reliance on reinsurance agreements in its lawsuit seeking to recover a $26 million arbitration award directly from reinsurers, a credit insurer argues in a Dec. 1 reply brief to a District of Columbia federal court, seeking dismissal of the breach of contract lawsuit (Vantage Commodities Financial Services I, LLC v. Assured Risk Transfer PCC, LCC, et al., No. 17-01451, D. D.C.).

Insurer: Insured Made False Representations As To Ownership Of Pit Bull Mix
LANCASTER, Pa. - A homeowners insurer recently asked a Pennsylvania court to grant it summary judgment in its declaratory judgment lawsuit challenging coverage for an underlying personal injury lawsuit arising from an alleged dog bite (Donegal Mutual Insurance v. Jennifer Lynn Telepchak, No. 16-04816, Pa. Comm. Pls., Lancaster Co.).

Insurer Backs Insolvent Insurer's $42M Settlement With Mutual Insured
CONCORD, N.H. - After The Home Insurance Co.'s liquidator sought approval of a settlement with an insured for $42 million, an insurer who has a contribution claim against the insured says in a Nov. 30 response to a New Hampshire trial court that it has no objection to the settlement (In the Matter of the Liquidation of The Home Insurance Co., No. 03-E-0106, N.H. Super., Merrimack Co.).

Coverage Barred For Claims Arising Out Contaminated Pet Food, Insurer Asserts
CHICAGO - No coverage is owed to an insured manufacturer of pet food for underlying claims alleging damages caused by pet food manufactured by the insured and contaminated with pentobarbital because the insured made material misrepresentations in its application for insurance and because the policies at issue clearly preclude coverage for the underlying claims, an insurer asserts in a Dec. 5 complaint filed in Illinois federal court (Colony Insurance Co. v. Evanger's Dog and Cat Food Co. Inc., et al., No. 17-8756, N.D. Ill.).

Insurer, Plastics Company Dispute Scope Of Coverage For Packing Products Case
CHICAGO - A plastic's company and insurer recently submitted their arguments to the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, disputing whether a trial court erred when it found that the insurer was not liable to provide coverage in relation to an underlying lawsuit stemming from faulty laminate made by the company (Berry Plastics Corp., n/k/a Berry Global Inc. v. Illinois National Insurance Co., No. 17-1815, 7th Cir.).

Court Erred In Enforcing Forum-Selection Clause, Insureds Argue To 5th Circuit
NEW ORLEANS - Insureds have asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower court's ruling dismissing their lawsuit seeking coverage for 2015 property damage to their food manufacturing facility, alleging that if this case of first impression is not reversed, the lower court's ruling will change 50 years of law and policy and strip Louisiana policyholders of their rights (Al Copeland Investments LLC, et al. v. First Specialty Insurance Corp., No. 17-30557, 5th Cir.)

Court Erred When It Applied New York Law To Excess Coverage Case, Investors Say
SAN FRANCISCO - A group of investor plaintiffs have asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a district court ruling and find that the lower court erred when it applied New York law to an insurance coverage dispute regarding the limits of excess coverage (Ruth Ann Wunderman-Cooper, et al. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's London, No. 15-56671, 9th Cir.).

Choice Of Law Argued In 2nd Circuit Appeal Over Voided Life Insurance Policy
NEW YORK - In briefs filed with the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, a life insurance provider and a bank that held a policy declared void ab initio by a trial court debate whether Delaware law was properly applied in a determination that the policy constituted an illegal stranger-originated life insurance (STOLI) policy and whether a refund of premiums was appropriate (U.S. Bank National Association v. Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, No. 17-0435, 2nd Cir.).

Reinsurer Appeals Ruling In Federal Crop Insurance Suit To D.C. Circuit Court
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A reinsurer on Oct. 10 asked the District of Columbia U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reverse the dismissal of its complaint against Federal Crop Insurance Corp. (FCIC) in a reinsurance dispute (ACE American Insurance Co., et al v. Federal Crop Insurance Corp., 16-5348, D.C. Cir.).

Dismissal Sought In Reinsurers' RICO, Breach Of Contract Dispute Over Alleged Scheme
EL PASO, Texas - In a lawsuit alleging a scheme to take control over a dealership and to decline selling vehicle-protection products that are reinsured by the reinsurers, defendants argue in their Oct. 11 reply brief to a Texas federal court for dismissal in favor of a state probate court action (Richard C. Poe II, et al. v. Anthony E. Bock, et al., No. 17-00232, W.D. Texas).

Insurer Seeks Judgment On Bank's Misrepresentation Of Reinsurance Funds Mishandling
COLUMBIA, S.C. - An insurer on Sept. 20 moved for summary judgment in a South Carolina federal court on its negligent misrepresentation claim against a bank accused of mishandling reinsurance funds and also opposes the bank's request for summary judgment "on the basis of a cherry-picked and one-sided record" (Companion Property and Casualty Insurance Co. v. U.S. Bank National Association v. Redwood Reinsurance Spc. Ltd., et al., No. 15-01300, D. S.C.).

Insurer Opposes Judgment Motion In Hotel's Data Breach Coverage Suit
ORLANDO, Fla. - In an Oct. 12 brief in Florida federal court, a commercial general liability insurer opposes a motion for judgment as to its duty to defend in a data breach coverage dispute, arguing that the hotel that experienced the breach, which is claiming resulting losses, is not an insured under the policy (St. Paul Fire & Marine Insurance Co. v. Rosen Millennium Inc., No. 6:17-cv-00540, M.D. Fla.).

No Coverage Owed For Asbestos Suit, Insurer Asserts In Complaint
CHICAGO - No coverage is owed for an underlying asbestos personal injury suit filed against an insured because the policies' pollution exclusion and silica exclusion preclude coverage, the insurers assert in a Nov. 3 complaint filed in Illinois federal court (All America Insurance Co., et al. v. Banner Truck & Trailer Sales Inc., et al., No. 17-1214, S.D. Ill.).

Insolvent Insurer Asserts Defenses Against Contractual Indemnification Claim
COLUMBIA, S.C. - An insolvent insurer argues in a Nov. 22 reply brief to the South Carolina federal court that a bank is barred from asserting its contractual indemnification counterclaim in a dispute over the bank's role as trustee of a reinsurance trust with an insolvent insurer because the bank has no contractual right (Accident Insurance Company Inc. v. U.S. Bank National Association, et al., No. 16-2621, D. S.C.).