General Liability

  • May 24, 2024

    No-Show Plaintiff, 'Jackass' Atty Booted Too Quickly, Court Says

    A Michigan appellate court sympathized with a trial court dealing with a no-show plaintiff and his lawyer who acted like a "jackass" — according to one appellate judge — but ruled Thursday that the trial court needed to do a better job documenting why it tossed the case instead of issuing a lesser sanction.

  • May 24, 2024

    Insurer's Coverage Suit Premature, Ga. Apt. Complex Says

    An apartment complex facing negligence claims over a shooting told a Georgia federal court that its insurer's suit seeking to avoid coverage must be tossed, arguing that without any factual findings in the underlying state court action, any finding on the insurer's duty to indemnify would be premature.

  • May 24, 2024

    Insurer Owes Coverage For School Defect Claim, Builder Says

    A general contractor told a Washington federal court it is entitled to coverage under a subcontractor's commercial general liability policy with a Liberty Mutual unit for defects and damage that a school district alleges was caused by the subcontractor while working on a school expansion project.

  • May 23, 2024

    Calif. High Court Deals Loss To Policyholder In COVID-19 Suit

    The California Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the coronavirus generally doesn't cause the kind of damage to property that would trigger coverage under an insurance policy, handing a win to a Chubb insurance company in one of the last major venues for pandemic coverage litigation.

  • May 23, 2024

    Colo. AI Bias Law Brings Little Certainty For Insurance Sector

    Colorado enacted the nation's first comprehensive regulatory scheme for protecting consumers from discriminatory and biased artificial intelligence systems, sending a warning signal to an insurance sector bracing for increased scrutiny and risks related to the technology.

  • May 23, 2024

    How An Ex-Attorney Turned Mediator Approaches Conflict

    Drawing from his 25-year career as an attorney litigating primarily insurance coverage disputes, Steven Schulwolf founded Schulwolf Mediation to help parties reach effective resolutions in even the toughest cases.

  • May 23, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    Policyholders suffered losses over COVID-19 coverage claims before the California Supreme Court and Fourth Circuit, the California high court weighed whether an exclusion rendered virus coverage illusory and if a policyholder's unfair competition claim against State Farm was untimely, and the Tenth Circuit questioned the scope of absolute pollution exclusions.

  • May 23, 2024

    2nd Circ. Revives Insurer's $2.5M Suit Over Valuation Software

    The Second Circuit on Thursday revived an insurer's indemnification bid against software company Audatex for $2.5 million in costs from a suit alleging its use of Audatex's valuation software resulted in underpayment for totaled cars, concluding the lower court erred in finding the suit didn't result from the insurer's use of Audatex's software.

  • May 23, 2024

    NC High Court Grants Review In Clothier's Virus Coverage Suit

    North Carolina's top court on Thursday agreed to take up a clothing company's coverage appeal for COVID-19 losses against Zurich after a lower appellate panel found the virus did not cause the kind of physical loss or damage necessary to invoke coverage.

  • May 23, 2024

    4th Circ. Rules No Coverage For Mars' COVID Losses

    Candymaker Mars Inc. can't get coverage from Factory Mutual Insurance Co. for its COVID-19-related losses, the Fourth Circuit ruled Thursday, further rejecting Mars' bid to certify a question to the Virginia Supreme Court.

  • May 23, 2024

    Estate Sues Hanover For $13.4M Judgment In Death Suit

    The Hanover Insurance Group has refused to pay a judgment of nearly $13.4 million to the family of a man who died in the care of a Connecticut group home, according to a lawsuit in state court.

  • May 23, 2024

    Coverage Suit Paused Until Resolution Of Gun Sales Dispute

    A California federal court paused Crum & Forster's suit against a police gun and fitness club and the city of Los Angeles over coverage for underlying actions brought by officers accusing the club of selling them stolen handguns, citing factual overlap between the actions.

  • May 22, 2024

    Seattle Sues Train Cos. Over Bike Track-Crossing Suits

    The city of Seattle says two short-line railroads have breached agreements to maintain liability insurance and indemnify the city in lawsuits from cyclists injured crossing tracks along a perilous stretch of a popular bike trail, according to a complaint filed in Washington state court.

  • May 21, 2024

    Strategic Hiring Was The New Normal For BigLaw In 2023

    The 400 largest law firms by headcount in the U.S. grew more slowly in 2023 than in the previous two years, while Kirkland & Ellis LLP surpassed the 3,000-attorney threshold, according to the latest Law360 ranking.

  • May 21, 2024

    The Law360 400: Tracking The Largest US Law Firms

    The legal market expanded more tentatively in 2023 than in previous years amid a slowdown in demand for legal services, especially in transactions, an area that has been sluggish but is expected to quicken in the near future.

  • May 20, 2024

    10th Circ. Oral Args. Poised To Shape NM Pollution Coverage

    The Tenth Circuit said there were "good arguments on both sides" of an appeal at oral arguments Monday over whether absolute pollution exclusions doomed a New Mexico property owner's quest for defense coverage of underlying contamination litigation, in a case that could set the tone for insurance battles in the state.

  • May 20, 2024

    3 Insurance Execs Can't Hit Pause On Asset Theft Claims

    Three former Sherbrooke Corporate Ltd. executives accused of stealing assets when they left to form their own venture lost a bid to halt the company's lawsuit, after a North Carolina federal judge doubted that their efforts to toss the case would succeed.

  • May 20, 2024

    Auto Accessory Co. Secures Partial Coverage For BIPA Row

    An insurer must defend an automotive accessory company in a proposed class action alleging violations of Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act, the Seventh Circuit ruled, finding that unlike the company's primary and excess commercial general liability policies, an umbrella policy "lacks an exclusion pertaining to nonpublic information."

  • May 17, 2024

    Colo. Precedent Barred Insurer's Crash Liability Challenge

    A Colorado state appeals court affirmed a lower court's finding that a Progressive unit couldn't contest liability in its policyholder's car crash case involving an uninsured driver, saying the lower court correctly applied binding Colorado Supreme Court precedent.

  • May 17, 2024

    $5M Candy Recall Coverage Dispute Moved To Texas Court

    An insurer's lawsuit disclaiming coverage for a candy manufacturer over a near $5 million recall over metal fragments found in certain gummy candies belongs in Texas, a New York federal judge has ruled, finding that the action was "filed preemptively to deprive the natural plaintiff of its choice of forum."

  • May 17, 2024

    5th Circ. Won't Rethink SXSW Ticket Coverage Ruling

    The Fifth Circuit will not reconsider ordering a Chubb unit to cover defense costs incurred by Texas music festival South by Southwest from a class action by ticket holders seeking refunds after Austin officials canceled the festival in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • May 16, 2024

    Convicted Insurance Mogul Says He'll Trim Empire

    Convicted insurance mogul Greg Lindberg told the North Carolina Supreme Court he's relinquishing control of portions of his enterprise to fulfill a deal to restructure them with independent oversight, according to court filings.

  • May 16, 2024

    Justices Dodge Class Action Queries In $3.5B Insurance Row

    The U.S. Supreme Court left open the question of when class actions should be relegated to state courts by declining a mutual insurance company's appeal of claims that it failed to return $3.5 billion in profits back to policyholders.

  • May 16, 2024

    3 Big Bankruptcy Cases Still Pending At The Supreme Court

    The U.S. Supreme Court may have declined to hear a challenge to non-debtor litigation stays in mass tort bankruptcies this week in the Chapter 11 case of Georgia-Pacific's asbestos spinoff, but it is still slated to hand down decisions with the potential for wide-reaching impacts to mass torts and beyond this term.

  • May 16, 2024

    Oversight Hearing Adds Pressure On Calif. Insurance Chief

    Under growing pressure from Gov. Gavin Newsom and the insurance industry, California’s top insurance regulator defended its process of implementing proposals to stabilize the Golden State’s faltering homeowners insurance market.

Expert Analysis

  • Key Lessons From Recent Insurance Policy Reform Litigation

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    A review of recent case law reveals the wide range of misunderstandings that may arise between insurers and policyholders in the purchase and renewal of insurance policies, as well as the utility — and the limits — of reformation and related remedies for these misunderstandings, say Jad Khazem and Seth Tucker at Covington.

  • Corporate Insurance Considerations For Trafficking Claims

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    With the surge in litigation over liability under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, corporate risk managers and in-house counsel need to ensure that appropriate insurance coverage is in place to provide for defense and indemnity against this liability, says Micah Skidmore at Haynes Boone.

  • Exploring An Alternative Model Of Litigation Finance

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    A new model of litigation finance, most aptly described as insurance-backed litigation funding, differs from traditional funding in two key ways, and the process of securing it involves three primary steps, say Bob Koneck, Christopher Le Neve Foster and Richard Butters at Atlantic Global Risk LLC.

  • Leveraging Insurance Amid Microplastics Concerns

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    A pending microplastics lawsuit — New York v. PepsiCo Inc. — may be a harbinger of what is to come for companies whose products are exposed to the environment, so any company considering how to address microplastics liability should include a careful assessment of the potential for insurance coverage in its due diligence, say attorneys at Haynes Boone.

  • Examining Illinois Genetic Privacy Law Amid Deluge Of Claims

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    After a federal court certified an Illinois Genetic Information Privacy Act class action in August, claims under the law have skyrocketed, so employers, insurers and others that collect health and genetic information should ensure compliance with the act to limit litigation risk, say attorneys at Squire Patton.

  • An American Policyholder's Guide To UK Insurance Arbitration

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    No matter how experienced U.S. policyholders are in stateside disputes, the procedural quirks of U.K. insurance arbitration mean Americans should learn a few key differences between U.S. litigation and London arbitration before heading across the pond, says Robert Jacobs at Blank Rome.

  • 5 Climate Change Regulatory Issues Insurers Should Follow

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    The climate change landscape for insurers has changed dramatically recently — and not just because of the controversy over the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's climate-related risk disclosure rules, says Thomas Dawson at McDermott.

  • Notable Q1 Updates In Insurance Class Actions

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    Mark Johnson and Mathew Drocton at BakerHostetler discuss notable insurance class action decisions from the first quarter of the year ranging from salvage vehicle titling to rate discrimination based on premium-setting software.

  • Why RWI Insurers Should Consider Excluding PFAS

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    As regulation of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances escalates, carriers providing representations and warranties insurance should reconsider providing PFAS coverage on a case-by-case basis, say Dave Bartoletti and Ina Avalon at Taft Stettinius.

  • Parsing Insurance Issues After Mass Shooting 'Occurrences'

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    A Florida district court’s recent decision in Tony v. Evanston Insurance, which held that the 2018 Parkland High School mass shooting was a single "occurrence" under the town's commercial general liability policy, sheds light on how other courts may make this determination following other mass shooting events, says Elan Kandel at Bailey Cavalieri.

  • Being An Equestrian Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Beyond getting experience thinking on my feet and tackling stressful situations, the skills I've gained from horseback riding have considerable overlap with the skills used to practice law, particularly in terms of team building, continuing education, and making an effort to reset and recharge, says Kerry Irwin at Moore & Van Allen.

  • Top 10 Queries For Insurers Entering Surplus Lines Market

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    John Emmanuel at Locke Lord discusses what insurers should understand before entering into the surplus lines market, a growing, state-regulated area, subject to much variation in application and enforcement.

  • Considering CGL Defense For Social Media Addiction Claims

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    A recent lawsuit filed in California state court against Meta seeks damages from technology companies for the costs of treating children allegedly suffering from social media addiction, but the prospects of defense coverage under commercial general liability insurance policies for a potential new wave of claims look promising, say Craig Hirsch and Tae Andrews at Pasich.