Property

  • July 23, 2024

    6th Circ. Affirms Insurer's Early Win In Hail Damage Suit

    A welding company wasn't owed coverage for roof damage caused by wind and a hailstorm, the Sixth Circuit ruled, finding that a lower court didn't err in ruling that a cosmetic-damage exclusion in its policy precludes the damage at issue.

  • July 23, 2024

    Insurers Must Defend Well Driller In Lead Contamination Suit

    Insurers must defend a drilling company accused of contaminating a rental property's water supply with dangerous levels of lead, a Montana federal court ruled, saying they haven't shown the underlying claims fall outside the policies' insuring agreements or are otherwise excluded from coverage.

  • July 23, 2024

    'Surface Water' Stumps Mass. Justices In Loss For Insurers

    The top court in Massachusetts on Tuesday ruled in favor of a hospital seeking insurance coverage stemming from a severe rainstorm, saying it's unclear if water that pooled on the hospital's roof should be considered "surface water" that would trigger policy limits on flood damage.

  • July 22, 2024

    9th Circ. Affirms Dismissal Of Calif. Virus Coverage Suit

    The Ninth Circuit affirmed the dismissal Monday of a California event operators' COVID-19 insurance coverage dispute after the state's Supreme Court determined in May that the virus doesn't cause the type of property damage needed to trigger coverage.

  • July 22, 2024

    Nationwide Seeks Travelers' Aid In Hot Tub Illness Row

    Nationwide told a California federal court a Travelers unit must help defend a condominium association in an underlying lawsuit brought by a resident alleging he needed a double lung transplant because of hot tub contaminants, arguing Travelers' pollution exclusion and fungi or bacteria exclusion didn't apply.

  • July 19, 2024

    Chubb Unit Beats Manufacturer In R.I. COVID-19 Coverage Suit

    A knitted wire mesh manufacturer lost its bid for coverage for pandemic losses at its Mexico facilities because it didn't show that COVID-19 caused covered physical damage, a Rhode Island federal court ruled Friday, handing a win to the manufacturer's Chubb insurer.

  • July 19, 2024

    Calif. Justices Revive Row Over State Farm's Claims Handling

    California's Supreme Court revived a policyholder's case over State Farm's claims-handling practices, reversing an appeals court decision and agreeing with the state's attorney general that California's statute of limitations on unfair competition actions, not the policy or insurance code, governed the timing of the case.

  • July 18, 2024

    Insurer Settles Coverage Row Over Wash. Day Care Sex Abuse

    Following a contested nearly $25 million settlement agreement, an insurance coverage dispute arising from the molestation of children at an Olympia, Washington, day care center has been resolved, a Washington federal court announced Thursday.

  • July 18, 2024

    Towers Watson's Bump-Up Appeal Lifts Policyholder Hopes

    Towers Watson's request that the Fourth Circuit reject a lower court decision freeing its insurers from paying out $54 million in directors and officers coverage has raised policyholders' hopes that a favorable ruling will clarify the reach of so-called bump-up exclusions.

  • July 18, 2024

    Tobacco Cooperative's $10M Coverage Suit Trimmed

    A North Carolina federal court pared down a tobacco cooperative's suit accusing its excess insurer of wrongfully refusing to pay up to the full $10 million policy limit for defense and settlement costs associated with underlying suits brought by member growers.

  • July 18, 2024

    Split 9th Circ. Panel Backs Restoring DHS Bond Rule

    A Ninth Circuit panel upheld a Department of Homeland Security rule barring some immigration surety firms from posting bonds for detained border-crossers Thursday, saying the rule's 2021 ratification by current Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas cured any defects with its original introduction in 2020.

  • July 18, 2024

    9th Circ. Weighs Nevada High Court Cert. In Subrogation Suit

    The Ninth Circuit on Thursday suggested it might certify a question to the Nevada Supreme Court over whether an insurer can subrogate against another carrier if an underlying, covered settlement doesn't exceed their combined limits, questioning the extent they should be persuaded by two unpublished Nevada Supreme Court decisions.

  • July 18, 2024

    Vineyard Says Insurer Owes Coverage For $50M Of Bad Wine

    A vineyard is blaming its excess insurer for refusing to contribute to a settlement after an underlying lawsuit asserted more than $50 million in claims against it for allegedly damaging over 300,000 cases of wine, according to a case moved to Washington federal court.

  • July 18, 2024

    Former Md. Insurance Head Reflects On Return To DLA Piper

    Kathleen Birrane returned to DLA Piper to lead the firm's U.S. insurance regulatory practice after four years as Maryland's insurance commissioner, resuming her role in private practice with years of experience working across state and international lines on emerging issues. Law360 spoke with Birrane by email about her career.

  • July 18, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    An Amazon insurer was given the green light to pursue its subrogation claims, a former Georgia insurance commissioner was sentenced to 3½ years for his kickback scheme, 3M couldn't get a quick win in its combat earplugs multidistrict litigation coverage dispute, and an electronics components maker lost its $100 million COVID-19 coverage appeal. Here, Law360 takes a look at this week's top insurance news.

  • July 18, 2024

    Ga. Mineral Co. Can't Nab Win In Row Over Talc Suit Coverage

    A Georgia federal judge declined to grant a win to a mineral products company trying to compel a Travelers unit to defend it against an underlying suit claiming that it supplied asbestos-containing talc products.

  • July 17, 2024

    Conn. Enacts Legislation To Support Captive Insurers

    Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont signed into law an act aimed at furthering the state's commitment to the captive insurance industry, building upon the legislative efforts of recent years that have positioned Connecticut as the leading domicile for captives.

  • July 17, 2024

    U. Miami Climate Leader Sees Chance For Innovation

    With Miami often called the "ground zero" of the climate change crisis, the University of Miami in 2022 launched a Climate Resilience Academy to coordinate an interdisciplinary response. Nearly a year into his tenure, its leader reflects on the opportunity for midsize city innovation in infrastructure in the face of climate challenges.

  • July 17, 2024

    Md. Justices Say Amazon Insurer Can Pursue Subrogation

    An insurer for Amazon can continue to pursue subrogation against subcontractors for a Baltimore warehouse construction project, the Maryland Supreme Court unanimously ruled, after the insurer said it covered Amazon for over $50 million worth of damage caused by severe weather.

  • July 16, 2024

    AIG Unit Must Face Mall's COVID-19 Coverage Claims

    An AIG unit must face claims that it is liable for a mall operator's losses from rent abatement agreements entered into with tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic, a California federal court ruled, also finding a material dispute about whether the policy's contamination exclusion bars coverage for pandemic-related losses.

  • July 16, 2024

    The 2024 Diversity Snapshot: What You Need To Know

    Law firms' ongoing initiatives to address diversity challenges have driven another year of progress, with the representation of minority attorneys continuing to improve across the board, albeit at a slower pace than in previous years. Here's our data dive into minority representation at law firms in 2023.

  • July 16, 2024

    These Firms Have The Most Diverse Equity Partnerships

    Law360’s law firm survey shows that firms' efforts to diversify their equity partner ranks are lagging. But some have embraced a broader talent pool at the equity partner level. Here are the ones that stood out.

  • July 15, 2024

    Resort Owner Seeks Arb. In Storm Damage Insurance Row

    A resort owner seeking to arbitrate its $55 million storm damage claim told a Hawaii federal court that its insurers can't litigate in New York federal court since its policies contain a "mishmash" of forum selection requirements, while the insurers separately countered that arbitration still can't happen yet.

  • July 15, 2024

    Towers Watson Asks 4th Circ. To Find Merger Dispute Covered

    Towers Watson's insurers must pay out $54 million in remaining directors and officers coverage to help fund a $75 million settlement in a shareholder suit over the company's merger with Willis, Towers Watson told the Fourth Circuit, saying a so-called bump-up exclusion does not apply.

  • July 15, 2024

    Casino Owner Says Insurer Must Face $130M COVID Loss Suit

    A casino operator with properties on the Las Vegas strip and beyond asked a Nevada federal judge to keep its $130 million COVID-19 pandemic loss coverage suit alive, arguing that its insurer presented no valid reason to end the dispute.

Expert Analysis

  • Lead Like 'Ted Lasso' By Embracing Cognitive Diversity

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    The Apple TV+ series “Ted Lasso” aptly illustrates how embracing cognitive diversity can be a winning strategy for teams, providing a useful lesson for law firms, which can benefit significantly from fresh, diverse perspectives and collaborative problem-solving, says Paul Manuele at PR Manuele Consulting.

  • 7th Circ Joins Trend Of No CGL Coverage For Structural Flaws

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    The Seventh Circuit, which recently held potential structural instability did not count as property damage under a construction company's commercial general liability policy, joins a growing consensus that faulty work does not implicate coverage without tangible and present damage to the project, say Sarah Abrams at Baleen Specialty, and Elan Kandel and James Talbert at Bailey Cavalieri.

  • New La. Managing Agent Law May Portend Growing Scrutiny

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    Recent amendments to Louisiana’s managing general agent regulations impose expansive new obligations on such agents and their insurer partners, which may be a sign of heightened regulatory, commercial and rating agency scrutiny, say attorneys at McDermott.

  • What Fla. Ruling Means For Insurer Managed Repair Programs

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    A recent Florida state court ruling in Fraga v. Citizens Property Insurance, holding that the insurer could not seek to add additional terms in its managed repair program consent form, should promote clear written contract terms that clarify the relationship between insurers, policyholders and contractors, says Chip Merlin at Merlin Law Group.

  • NY Banking Brief: All The Notable Legal Updates In Q2

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    The second quarter of 2024 saw less enforcement activity in the realm of New York financial services, but brought substantial regulatory and legislative developments, including state regulators' guidance on cybersecurity compliance and customer service processes for virtual currency entities, say James Vivenzio and Andrew Lucas at Perkins Coie.

  • Takeaways From Justices' Redemption Insurance Decision

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    The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Connelly v. U.S. examines how to determine the fair market value of shares in a closely held company for estate tax purposes, and clarifies how life insurance held by the company to enable redemption of a decedent’s shares affects that calculation, says Evelyn Haralampu at Burns & Levinson.

  • Managing Legal Risks After University Gaza Protests

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    Following the protests sparked by the war in Gaza, colleges and universities should expect a long investigative tail and take steps to mitigate risks associated with compliance issues under various legal frameworks and institutional policies, say Wiley's Diana Shaw and Colin Cloherty.

  • An Insurance Coverage Checklist For PFAS Defendants

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    With PFAS liability exposures attracting increased media attention, now is a good time for companies that could be exposed to liability related to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances to review existing and past insurance policies, and consider taking proactive steps to maximize their likelihood of coverage, say attorneys at Nossaman.

  • Circuit Judge Writes An Opinion, AI Helps: What Now?

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    Last week's Eleventh Circuit opinion in Snell v. United Specialty Insurance, notable for a concurrence outlining the use of artificial intelligence to evaluate a term's common meaning, is hopefully the first step toward developing a coherent basis for the judiciary's generative AI use, says David Zaslowsky at Baker McKenzie.

  • Trauma-Informed Legal Approaches For Pro Bono Attorneys

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    As National Trauma Awareness Month ends, pro bono attorneys should nevertheless continue to acknowledge the mental and physical effects of trauma, allowing them to better represent clients, and protect themselves from compassion fatigue and burnout, say Katherine Cronin at Stinson and Katharine Manning at Blackbird.

  • Tips For Advising CRE Owners Affected By Houston Storms

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    As Houston residents begin the arduous process of recovery after this month's devastating storms, attorneys should guide commercial real estate owners and managers toward immediate action under their insurance coverage to facilitate restoration and a return to normalcy, says Justin Ratley at Munsch Hardt.

  • Key Insurance Considerations After $725M Benzene Verdict

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    The recent massive benzene verdict in Gill v. Exxon Mobil will certainly trigger insurance questions — and likely a new wave of benzene suits — so potential defendants should study Radiator Specialty v. Arrowood Indemnity, the only state high court decision regarding benzene claim coverage, says Jonathan Hardin at Perkins Coie.

  • 3rd Circ.'s Geico Ruling May Encourage Healthcare Arbitration

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    The Third Circuit's recent decision in Geico v. Mount Prospect, finding that claims under New Jersey's Insurance Fraud Prevention Act can be arbitrated, strengthens arbitration as a viable alternative to litigation, even though it is not necessarily always a more favorable forum, say Khaled Klele and Jessica Osterlof at McCarter & English.