Specialty Lines

  • February 28, 2024

    BASF Says Insurers Owe Coverage For PFAS Suits

    Major chemical manufacturer BASF Corp. told a South Carolina court Wednesday that 23 insurers should cover thousands of lawsuits that alleged a chemical the company produced for firefighting foam caused pollution and injuries.

  • February 27, 2024

    Egg Co. Not Covered For Avian Flu Losses, Minn. Judge Says

    A Markel unit does not owe coverage to an egg supplier for losses it sustained due to an avian flu outbreak in 2022, a Minnesota federal judge ruled Tuesday, finding that a communicable disease exclusion in a site pollution and environmental policy precluded coverage.

  • February 26, 2024

    Atty's Letter Is Not A Claim For Damages, Del. Justices Rule

    An attorney's presuit letter claiming that Syngenta's herbicide Paraquat caused his clients' Parkinson's disease does not constitute a "claim for damages" under the company's insurance policies with a pair of Zurich units, the Delaware Supreme Court ruled Monday.

  • February 26, 2024

    Ex-Bank CFO Cops To $700K Theft And Life Insurance Scam

    An ex-Eastern International Bank chief financial officer has pled guilty to defrauding the bank out of more than $700,000 to pay his personal expenses, and he admitted to opening life insurance policies in the names of bank employees to benefit his wife, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

  • February 26, 2024

    Colo. Justices To Hear If Insurers Can Withhold Some Payouts

    The Colorado Supreme Court said Monday it will consider whether the state's insurance code allowed Geico, following unsuccessful settlement attempts, to refuse paying noneconomic damages to a policyholder for his underinsured motorist claim, given what Geico said is the "inherently subjective" nature of such damages.

  • February 26, 2024

    Texas Justices Say $220M Cobalt Deal Is A Loss Under Policy

    A $220 million settlement that now-bankrupt Cobalt International Energy Inc. reached with a group of investors constitutes a loss under the energy company's insurance policies, but the agreement is not binding on Cobalt's insurers to establish coverage, the Texas Supreme Court ruled.

  • February 26, 2024

    Insurance Co. Beats Claims Analysts' OT Exemption Suit

    A life insurance company prevailed against disability claim analysts alleging they were wrongfully denied overtime pay, as an Illinois federal judge tossed their suit because the workers are administrative employees exempt from overtime requirements.

  • February 23, 2024

    State Farm Alleges Health Co. Violated Deal To Drop 366 Suits

    Two State Farm units are accusing an automobile accident-focused healthcare center of wrongly pursuing 366 lawsuits against the insurer despite a settlement agreement State Farm said requires the facility to drop those suits.

  • February 23, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    From maritime contracts’ choice-of-law provisions to a question on how far an agency can steer companies from contracting with controversial groups, the past week saw two insurance-related cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, plus litigation over a mass shooting and a casino operator’s claims that its “unique” policy covers pandemic losses. Here, Law360 recaps the week's top insurance news. 

  • February 23, 2024

    The New BIPA? Attys Warn GIPA Is A 'Live Grenade'

    After notable appellate victories in biometric privacy cases, Illinois plaintiffs have seized upon a previously little-used law protecting workers' genetic privacy, leaving defense attorneys wondering if history will repeat itself and open companies to potentially explosive liability. 

  • February 23, 2024

    4th Circ. Won't Rethink Adviser's Defamation Coverage Denial

    A Fourth Circuit panel declined to reconsider its decision that an investment adviser is not owed coverage under her firm's professional liability policy for an underlying defamation lawsuit.

  • February 23, 2024

    8th Circ. Says Nursing Home Fraudster Owes Supplier $7.6M

    A nursing home company whose owner pled guilty in January to employment tax fraud in a New Jersey federal case must shoulder a $5 million judgment plus interest and fees for bills it failed to pay a medical supply company, an Eighth Circuit panel affirmed Friday.

  • February 23, 2024

    Travelers Can't Duck Payout In Warehouse Fire Reversal

    A New York federal court has rejected Travelers' bid for additional discovery in a coverage dispute involving a textile importer whose goods were destroyed in a warehouse fire, after the Second Circuit vacated the insurer's early win in December and remanded for a judgment in the importer's favor.

  • February 26, 2024

    New York Pandemic Coverage Ruling Offers Few Surprises

    Businesses seeking insurance coverage for their pandemic losses were dealt yet another loss recently by New York's top court, a ruling that didn't surprise attorneys watching to see whether the Empire State might buck the trend of carrier victories.

  • February 23, 2024

    Insurance M&A Partner From Sidley Joins Kirkland

    Kirkland & Ellis LLP has added a corporate partner in its insurance transactions and regulatory and financial institutions practice groups, bringing on a former Sidley Austin LLP attorney who said he "couldn't be more excited" to join the firm's Chicago office.

  • February 22, 2024

    9th Circ. Urged To Rethink Hiscox Win Due To Hidden Ruling

    A design and marketing company urged the Ninth Circuit on Thursday to review its decision that an insurer didn't have to cover an $850,000 arbitration award to a former CEO over alleged fraud, arguing that the insurer hid the underlying action's judgment that rejected the proposed fraud language.

  • February 22, 2024

    Lumber Co., Insurer To Settle $4.9M Coverage Dispute

    A subcontractor and its professional liability insurer have reached a settlement in principle on about $5 million in underlying claims over moldy, defective wooden framework the subcontractor supplied to a senior living project, the parties told a Florida federal court.

  • February 21, 2024

    NY Judges Question Lehman's Bid To Undo CDS Trial Loss

    A panel of New York appeals court judges on Wednesday appeared reluctant to undo a bench trial loss Lehman Bros.' bankrupt European unit suffered last year in a suit attempting to clawback nearly half a billion dollars from Assured Guaranty over alleged losses on credit default swaps tied to the 2008 financial crisis.

  • February 21, 2024

    Justices Told NRA Speech Claim Would Thwart Regulation

    The ex-head of New York's financial regulator has told the U.S. Supreme Court her statements advising companies to consider their relationships with the National Rifle Association following the 2018 mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, didn't violate the First Amendment, rejecting the NRA's position that the statements were a "veiled threat."

  • February 21, 2024

    11th Circ. Says Sotheby's Insured For Fla. Agent Theft Row

    An Eleventh Circuit panel affirmed Wednesday that an insurer must defend One Sotheby's International Realty against allegations that its agent bamboozled married Russian investors into selling their Miami Beach-area condo at below market value, eventually stealing $3.7 million in sale proceeds.

  • February 21, 2024

    Justices Back Choice-Of-Law In Marine Insurance Suit

    An insurer can enforce choice-of-law provisions in a marine insurance policy it issued to the owner of a yacht that ran aground, the U.S. Supreme Court said Wednesday in a decision upholding long-standing maritime law principles of uniformity and certainty.

  • February 20, 2024

    Insurer Must Pay Defense Costs In Newspaper Shooting Row

    An insurer owed coverage to the parent companies of a Maryland newspaper for the legal fees resulting from two underlying lawsuits brought by the victims and their families after a 2018 mass shooting, an Illinois federal judge ruled Tuesday.

  • February 20, 2024

    Casinos Say 'Unique' Policy Should Cover $130M COVID Loss

    A casino operator with properties on the Las Vegas Strip and beyond told a Nevada federal court that its "unique" all-risk insurance is the broadest available coverage and should pay for $130 million in business interruption losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • February 20, 2024

    Pharma Co. Can Get D&O Coverage For Securities Suit

    A pharmaceutical company that developed a drug for rare genetic blood disorders is covered under a recent directors and officers policy for a securities class action, a Delaware state court ruled, rejecting its insurers' contention that the action was related to an SEC subpoena and thus fell under an older policy. 

  • February 16, 2024

    Insurer Seeks To Cancel $15M Policy Over 'Human Life Wager'

    A life insurance company has urged a New Jersey federal court to void a $15 million policy it calls an illegal "human life wager" on a man whose death benefits a bank, rather than his own family.

Expert Analysis

  • 5 Tips For Policyholders Arbitrating R&W Insurance Claims

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    With more representations and warranties insurance disputes being arbitrated, policyholder counsel should note issues that are unique to RWI claims, including those of privilege, priority and preserving subrogation, says Micah Skidmore at Haynes Boone. 

  • Justices Stay The Course In Maritime Choice-Of-Law Ruling

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's narrowly drawn decision in Great Lakes Insurance v. Raiders Retreat Realty, enforcing the underlying insurance contract's choice-of-law provision, carefully distinguishes those provisions from forum selection clauses, and ensures that courts will not apply its precepts outside the maritime context, says John Coyle at the University of North Carolina.

  • Key Lessons After A Rare R&W Insurance Ruling

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    The recent New York state court decision in Novolex Holdings v. Illinois Union Insurance is noteworthy as one of the rare judicial opinions arising in the context of representations and warranties insurance, serving to remind parties entering into R&W insurance policies that they may not be immune from some doctrines unfavorable to insurers, say attorneys at Kramer Levin.

  • SEC Regs Give Banks Chance To Step Up Cyber Safety Game

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    Just as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act forced financial institutions to undertake best practices in recordkeeping, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s recently effective cybersecurity regulations stand to similarly drive those same enterprises to seek out and implement best practices in cybersecurity, to everyone's benefit, says James Gerber at SimSpace.

  • What To Know About RWI In Acquisition And Divestiture Deals

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    As a slower pace of merger activity turns underwriters toward new industries, representations and warranties insurance policies are increasingly being written for acquisition and divestiture energy deals, making it important for contracting parties to understand how the RWI underwriting process works in this new sector, say attorneys at Haynes Boone.

  • SAG-AFTRA Contract Is A Landmark For AI And IP Interplay

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    SAG-AFTRA's recently ratified contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers introduced a framework to safeguard performers' intellectual property rights and set the stage for future discussions on how those rights interact with artificial intelligence — which should put entertainment businesses on alert for compliance, says Evynne Grover at QBE.

  • What R&W Insurance Access Means For Small-Cap M&A

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    As a slowdown in mergers and acquisitions has increased insurer appetite for underwriting small-cap transactions, buyers of small and midsize enterprises stand to benefit from easier access to representations and warranties insurance, which can add protection and reassurance for all parties involved in a deal, say Caroline Thee and Ewelina Mikocewicz at Taft Stettinius.

  • How Merck Settlement Can Inform Cyberinsurance Approach

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    This month's settlement in Merck v. ACE spotlights how cyber exclusions have evolved since the significant decision in the case — allowing for insurance coverage despite the presence of a policy war exclusion — and where else corporate risk managers may look for coverage in case of a cyberattack, say attorneys at McGuireWoods.

  • Mitigating Compliance And Litigation Risks Of Evolving Tech

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    Amid artificial intelligence and other technological advances, companies must prepare for the associated risks, including a growing suite of privacy regulations, enterprising class action theories and consumer protection challenges, and proliferating disclosure obligations, say attorneys at Eversheds Sutherland.

  • ESG Around The World: Canada

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    In Canada, multiple statutes, regulations, common law and industry guidance address environmental, social and governance considerations, with debate over ESG in the business realm potentially growing on the horizon, say attorneys at Blakes.

  • Insured Takeaways From 10th Circ. Interrelated Claims Ruling

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    The Tenth Circuit's recent ruling in American Southwest Mortgage v. Continental Casualty that multiple claims arising from consecutive audit years were interrelated — and thus subject to a per claim limit — creates a concerning precedent for policyholders, so companies should negotiate relevant policy language, says Michael Stockalper at Saxe Doernberger.

  • Consider A Key Insurance Tool For Environmental M&A Deals

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    Transactional liability insurance can be a useful risk allocation tool for completing mergers and acquisitions in the renewable energy and climate and clean technology sectors, though policies must be structured carefully to achieve maximum coverage, say Joseph Castelluccio and Paul de Bernier at Mayer Brown.

  • Policyholders Must Object To Insurer Reorganizations

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    When insurance companies reorganize, policies often take years to ultimately pay out a fraction of what is owed, so policyholders should organize and urge insurance commissioners to take action when retroactive reinsurance deals are announced, says Jonathan Terrell at KCIC.