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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 Says Lower Court Erred By Finding Policy Exclusions Do Not Apply
ATLANTA - An insurer tells the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Feb. 24 reply brief that its directors and officers liability policy does not cover wrongful acts by officers of a bank in receivership because the wrongful acts allegedly spring from earlier wrongful acts that were perpetrated before the policy coverage period (Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's, London v. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, et al., No. 16-16702, 11th Cir.).

Company Seeks Coverage For Damage To Transformer Caused When It Removed Parts
ST. LOUIS - Damage to the core of a transformer that occurred when Electric Power Systems International Inc. (EPS), the company charged with removing external parts for transport, attempted to remove one part is covered by EPS's insurance policy because the damage was incidental to EPS's work, EPS argues in March 13 reply brief filed in the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Electric Power Systems International, Inc. v. Zurich American Insurance Company, No. 16-3927, 8th Cir.).

Insurer: 4th Circuit Should Reverse Workers' Compensation Coverage Benefits Ruling
RICHMOND, Va. - An insurer filed an appellant brief in the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 16, arguing that the court should reverse the judgment of a district court because it lacked subject matter jurisdiction over an underlying workers' compensation case based on the West Virginia workers' compensation administrative system (Brickstreet Mutual Insurance Company v. Zurich American Insurance Company, No. 16-2204, 4th Cir.).

Court Erred In Finding Parties Were Properly Aligned, Appellants Argue To 6th Circuit
CINCINNATI - Appellants have asked the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's finding that parties were properly aligned in a dispute over whether additional coverage is owed to satisfy an underlying $3,736,278 judgment against an insured for breaching its duty to exercise ordinary care to maintain its common areas (Evanston Ins Co. v. Housing Authority of Somerset, 16-6691, 6th Cir.).

Appellant Seeks Reversal Of District Court's Dismissal Of Bad Faith Suit Against Insurer
PITTSBURGH - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals should reverse a district court's dismissal of a bad faith complaint because the district court improperly found that the plaintiff could not allege a claim of bad faith based on an insurer's conduct in a state court lawsuit, the plaintiff argues in a March 9 reply brief (Marc Homer v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., No. 16-3686, 3rd Cir.).

Law Firm, Insurer Argue In 9th Circuit Whether 7 Suits Constitute 1 Claim
SAN FRANCISCO - In briefs filed before the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, a law firm and its former insurer dispute whether seven real estate investment fraud lawsuits brought against the firm should be considered one claim for coverage purposes under professional liability policies (Liberty Insurance Underwriters Inc. v. Davies Lemmis Raphaely Law Corp., et al., No. 16-55711, 9th Cir.).

Federal Law Does Not Apply To State Law Procurement Claims, Insureds Tell 5th Circuit
NEW ORLEANS - Insureds have asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court's ruling in favor of an insurer and the United States of America in a lawsuit arising from the insurer's cancellation of a federal flood insurance policy following Hurricane Ike (Robert Spong and Kerry Spong v. Fidelity National Property and Casualty Insurance Co., et al., No. 16-41165, 5th Cir.).

Reinsured Says It Is Not Its Burden To Show Reasons For Settling Asbestos Claims
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - An insurer told a federal court in Connecticut on March 20 that its reinsurer is putting requirements on it that are not universally accepted as necessary under the follow-the-settlements doctrine, thus bringing a summary judgment motion to the state of being fully briefed (Travelers Casualty and Surety Company, f/k/a The Aetna Casualty and Surety Company v. Century Indemnity Company as successor to Insurance Company of North America, No. 16-cv-00170, D. Conn.).

Insurers Sue Saudi Arabia Under Justice Against Sponsors Of Terrorism Act
NEW YORK - Insurers on March 23 filed a new complaint against Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and/or the Saudi High Commission for Relief of Bosnia & Herzegovina (SHC) in a federal district court, contending that facts and related evidence presented by victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks have taken on additional significance as a result of the U.S. Congress' enactment of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) this past September (Underwriters Inc., et al. v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, et al., No. 17-02129, S.D. N.Y.).

Insurer Files Complaint, Says No Coverage Owed For Underlying Asbestos Claims
CLEVELAND - No coverage is owed to an insured for thousands of underlying asbestos bodily injury claims because the coverage limits of the primary policies have not been fully exhausted, an excess insurer argues in a lawsuit filed April 5 in Ohio federal court against the insured (Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Co., f/k/a Stonewall Insurance Co. v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., No. 17-714, N.D. Ohio).

Insured Says Court Did Not Review Evidence In Light Most Favorable To Insured
ATLANTA - An insured argues in a March 1 reply brief filed in the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that a district court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of an insurer in a copyright infringement coverage suit because the district court did not review all of the evidence in a light most favorable to the insured (Highlands Holdings Inc. v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co., No. 16-14981, 11th Cir.).

Insured: Duty To Defend Exists Under Trade Dress, Slogan, Advertising Idea Coverage
NEW ORLEANS - An insured asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to find that an insurer's duty to defend it against an underlying lawsuit was triggered under an insurance policy's trade dress, slogan and advertising idea coverage (Laney Chiropractic and Sports Therapy, P.A. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., 16-11183, 5th Cir.).

Parties Debate Whether Insurer Acted In Bad Faith In Not Accepting Demand Letter
ATLANTA - Parties in an insurance bad faith lawsuit recently asked the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to determine whether a federal district court erred in finding that an insurer acted in bad faith by not accepting the terms of claimants' time-limited demand letter seeking the policy limits under its insured's automobile insurance policy in exchange for a limited release of claims against the insured (Jesus Camacho, et al. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., No. 16-14225, 11th Cir.).

District Court Erred By Reducing Attorney Fees, Claimant Argues On Appeal
BOSTON - A disability claimant who successfully recovered benefits from a disability insurer argues in a Feb. 27 reply brief filed in the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that a district court failed to promote the goal of making the claimant whole under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) when it limited the amount of prejudgment interest and reduced the amount of attorney fees the claimant could collect from the insurer (Diahann L. Gross v. Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, Nos. 16-2002, 16-1958, 1st Cir.).

Woman Alleges Bad Faith Against Insurer, Tells 4th Circuit Dismissal Improper
RICHMOND, Va. - A woman who contends that her insurer breached its contract when it refused to pay benefits pursuant to her underinsured motorist coverage policy filed a brief in the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, arguing that a district court "improperly" resolved a factual dispute and "invaded the province of the jury" when it found that she could not establish damages as a proximate result of the insurer's conduct (Casey Jordan v. Allstate Insurance Company, No. 16-2049, 4th Cir.).

Target: Indemnity Obligation Owed In Relation To Underlying Injury Action
CINCINNATI - Target Corp. filed a brief in the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Dec. 15, arguing that the indemnity obligation owed by its insured to another company that was sued in an underlying personal injury lawsuit is enforceable "as a matter of law in a final and conclusive manner" (Northern Insurance Company of New York v. Target Corporation, et al., No. 16-2222, 6th Cir.).

9th Circuit To Hear Oral Arguments On Decision To Abstain From Insurer's Suit
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 17 will hear oral arguments regarding whether a Nevada federal court correctly abstained from an insurer's suit in favor a lawsuit filed in Nevada state court by a third party against the insurer (Seneca Insurance Co. Inc. v. Strange Land Inc., et al., No. 15-16011, 9th Cir.).

Former MetLife Rep Appeals Dismissal Of Retaliation Lawsuit Against Ex-Employer
NEW YORK - A life insurance salesman has asked the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to overturn summary judgment for Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. and to allow a trial on the plaintiff's claims of violation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2012, 18 U.S.C. 1514SA (Ronald Kantin v. Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, No. 16-1091, 2nd Cir.).

Carrier Seeks Reformation Of Policy To Include An Intended Pollution Exclusion
ATLANTA - No coverage is owed for contamination claims arising out of the operation of a battery plant because the underlying claim against the insured did not meet the policy's deductible and a pollution exclusion, inadvertently left out of the policy through mutual mistake, precludes coverage, an insurer argues in a March 15 motion for summary judgment filed in Georgia federal court (ACE American Insurance Co. v. Exide Technologies Inc., et al., No. 16-1600, N.D. Ga.).

Insurer Says No Coverage For Roofing Subcontractor's $6.6M In Faulty Work Damage
CHICAGO - A commercial general liability insurance policy does not cover a roofing subcontractor over faulty work claims that resulted in more than $6.6 million in damages to townhomes, an insurer says in its Jan. 4 complaint to an Illinois federal court (Nautilus Insurance Co. v. Classic Roofing Inc. and Custom Roofing Contracting Ltd., No. 17-45, N.D. Ill.).

Parties Argue Over Coverage For Damaged Corn Syrup Shipment
PHILADELPHIA - An insurer and a container company recently submitted supplemental arguments before the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, disputing whether there was any coverage for damage to a shipment of corn syrup under an insurance policy (The Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. USA Container Co., Inc., No. 14-3685, 3rd Cir.).

'Great Weight Of New York Authority' Supports Exclusion's Clarity, Insurer Argues
NEW YORK - A commercial general liability insurer recently argued to the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that there is no controlling case law supporting a lower court's conclusion that an "Employers Liability Exclusion" is ambiguous as a matter of law (Hastings Development v. Evanston Insurance Co., Nos. 15-3816 and 14-4085, 2nd Cir.).

Insurers, Industrial Company Argue Over Scope Of Old Settlement Agreement
CINCINNATI - A group of insurers and an industrial company sparred recently in the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals over the ambiguous or unambiguous meaning of a 1989 settlement agreement regarding environmental cleanup (Employers Insurance of Wausau, et al. v. McGraw Edison Company, No. 16-1264, 6th Cir.).

Federal Court Erred In Finding Claim Was Untimely, Insured Argues To 8th Circuit
ST. LOUIS - The correct application of the law and the doctrine of waiver do not support a lower federal court's ruling that a food marketing and distribution company insured's notice of an underlying lawsuit brought by its former employee was untimely, the insured argued to the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Food Market Merchandising Inc. v. Scottsdale Indemnity Co., 16-3427, 8th Cir.).

Excess Insurer's Duty To Additional Insured At Issue Before 9th Circuit
SAN FRANCISCO - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 9 received a reply brief in a case involving the scope of duty an excess insurer owes to an additional insured employee who used her vehicle for work purposes and was involved in an accident with a motorcycle, resulting in a $150,000 coverage gap (Judy Bamberger v. National Union Fire Insurance Co., No. 16-55252, 9th Cir.).

Insurer, Contractors Disagree On Scope Of Construction Defect Coverage
CHICAGO - An insurer and parties involved in the construction of a condominium argued recently in the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals over what if anything stemming from a construction defect suit is covered by a commercial general liability policy (Westfield Insurance Co. v. National Decorating Service, Inc., et al., No. 16-1439, 7th Cir.).

Attorney Says He Did Not Get Notice That A Court Might Impose Sanctions
ATLANTA - An attorney and an insurance company recently argued in the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals over whether the attorney received proper notice that a lower court was considering bringing sanctions against him (Kevin C. Ambler v. Landmark American Insurance Company, No. 16-11750, 11th Cir.).

Assignee, Reinsurer Spar Over Timeliness Of Claims Seeking Reinsurance Payments
CHICAGO - The assignee of certain reinsurance receivables rights challenging a lower court's finding that its claims against a reinsurer are untimely and the reinsurer argued recently in the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals over whether the assignee's claims are time-barred or whether the original reinsured's insolvency affected the claim accrual date (Pine Top Receivables of Illinois, LLC v. Banco De Seguros Del Estado, No. 16-3499, 7th Cir.).

Insurer Files Complaint, Seeks Rescission Of Product Contamination Policy
NEW YORK - An insurer claims in a Feb. 10 complaint filed in New York federal court that rescission of its product contamination insurance policy is warranted because the insured failed to disclose its knowledge of a possible contamination of its frozen vegetables (Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Co. v. CRF Frozen Foods LLC, et al., No. 17-1030, S.D. N.Y.).

Insured Seeks Coverage For Water Damage Caused By Burst Water Pipe
BISMARCK, N.D. - An insurer acted in bad faith by denying a claim for water damage to an insured apartment building because water damage is listed as a "specified cause of loss" in the policy, an insured claims in a Feb. 7 complaint filed in North Dakota federal court (Spring Glen Apartments LLP v. Arch Specialty Insurance Co., No. 17-28, D. N.D.).