Specialty Lines

  • June 20, 2024

    Attys See Huge Financial, Legal Stakes In Hawaii Climate Suit

    A novel Hawaiian case over whether an AIG insurer needs to pay a Sunoco subsidiary’s legal fees to beat claims it contributed to climate change has huge stakes for carriers and policyholders as they increasingly tussle over the cost of Earth-warming emissions.

  • June 20, 2024

    Trump Calls For Engoron's Recusal In Civil Fraud Case

    Former President Donald Trump and other defendants fighting a $465 million civil fraud judgment called on New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron to recuse himself Thursday in light of a once-suspended real estate attorney's recent judicial misconduct claims, which have since sparked a judicial investigation.

  • June 20, 2024

    Calif. Justices Give Insureds Certainty On Policy Exhaustion

    The California Supreme Court's clarification that an insured can look to first-layer excess policies as soon as primary coverage for that period is exhausted has favorable implications for policyholders, experts say, yet questions remain as a lower court weighs whether excess insurers must contribute to a primary insurer's coverage.

  • June 20, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The California Supreme Court opened the door to excess coverage for a policyholder's asbestos injury suits, the Hawaii Supreme Court questioned whether reckless behavior could trigger a Sunoco subsidiary's liability coverage, and the Second Circuit affirmed a Liberty Mutual unit's coverage win in a family shareholder dispute. Here, Law360 takes a look at the past week's top insurance news.

  • June 20, 2024

    Novel Vermont Polluter Law Raises Insurance Liability Issues

    A new Vermont law requiring fossil fuel companies to fund projects ameliorating the negative effects of climate change could raise questions about what constitutes a covered occurrence and how pollution exclusions may apply, while also igniting choice-of-law disputes, experts say.

  • June 20, 2024

    Nationwide Wins Mich. Combined Filing Tax Fight On Appeal

    Nationwide entities can file as a unitary business in Michigan to share tax credits across their group members, the state Court of Appeals ruled Thursday, overturning a state tax tribunal decision that said insurance companies were required to file separate returns.

  • June 18, 2024

    'Reckless' Behavior Centered In Climate Coverage Suit Args

    Attorneys for a Sunoco subsidiary and AIG offered sharply differing views to Hawaii's top court Tuesday in oral arguments over whether reckless behavior would trigger the oil company's liability coverage in a novel suit over coverage for underlying climate change claims.

  • June 18, 2024

    Insurer Countersues In Penile Implant Coverage Dispute

    An insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify a urologist, his medical device company or his practice in a proposed class action over a penile enlargement implant and procedure, the company told a California federal court, saying the underlying suit doesn't seek bodily injury damages that would trigger coverage.

  • June 17, 2024

    No Coverage For Family Shareholder Row, 2nd Circ. Affirms

    A Liberty Mutual unit had no duty to defend Paraco Gas Corp. and two of its executives in a family shareholder dispute, the Second Circuit affirmed Monday, finding that all claims in the underlying suit fell within the policy's contract exclusion.

  • June 14, 2024

    11th Circ. Shows Insurers Preference In D&O Coverage Row

    The Eleventh Circuit appeared poised to affirm a Florida district court's finding that the successor of an insurance services firm is not owed coverage for underlying shareholder-related litigation under 2017 claims-made policies because the claims are connected to ones made under a 2016 policy.

  • June 14, 2024

    Insurer Seeks Quick Exit In Casino $130M COVID Loss Suit

    The insurer of a casino operator with properties on the Las Vegas strip and beyond told a Nevada federal judge to toss a $130 million COVID-19 pandemic loss coverage suit, arguing it had already paid $1 million — the only benefits due under the all-risk policy.

  • June 13, 2024

    Top Specialty Lines Decisions From The First Half Of 2024

    The first half of this year brought notable pro-policyholder rulings in specialty insurance disputes on the applicability of contract exclusions and related-acts provisions, but also some rulings giving insurers a leg up when it comes to choice-of-law clauses in maritime insurance contracts and bump-up exclusions. Here, Law360 breaks down the top specialty lines decisions so far in 2024.

  • June 13, 2024

    Youth Org. Not Covered For Ex-Worker's Claim, 6th Circ. Rules

    A sexual misconduct exclusion bars a youth advocacy organization's bid for coverage of an ex-employee's claim that they were sexually harassed and assaulted by a supervisor, the Sixth Circuit affirmed Thursday, saying the organization's failure to raise certain arguments before the district court was fatal to its appeal.

  • June 13, 2024

    High Court Sticks To Status Quo In Insurance-Packed Term

    The U.S. Supreme Court embraced an insurance-packed docket in its current term, tackling thorny coverage issues head on or indirectly, hewing close to the status quo in decisions whose impact will be felt by insurers and policyholders across the industry. Here, Law360 reviews the top insurance-related decisions issued this term.

  • June 13, 2024

    Prudential Investors Get Final OK On $35M Settlement

    A New Jersey federal judge on Thursday granted final approval to a $35 million class action settlement between Prudential Financial Inc. and shareholders who alleged the company hid the risks associated with the purchase of thousands of life insurance policies.

  • June 13, 2024

    NJ Justices Create New Liability Rule For Property Owners

    The New Jersey Supreme Court on Thursday voted 4-3 to craft a new rule stating that owners of commercial vacant lots have a duty to maintain the public sidewalks abutting the lots, and reinstated a woman's trip-and-fall injury suit.

  • June 13, 2024

    Calif. Insurance Chief Proposes Key Tradeoff In Reform Bid

    Insurers in California will need to weigh whether the financial benefits of using new risk models to price policies is worth increasing their risk exposure in some of the state's most fire-prone areas following newly proposed rules from state insurance regulators. 

  • June 13, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The Eighth Circuit pondered whether Geico was responsible for an HPV infection, a Michigan court said lies could eliminate a dead man's payout, a Texas roofer was told that public adjusting wasn't a free-speech matter, and House of Cards' California suit withstood an insurer's attempt to knock it down.

  • June 13, 2024

    Insurer Calls Convicted Mogul's $633M IOU 'Worthless' Ruse

    Convicted insurance mogul Greg Lindberg has offered a "worthless" $633 million promise as a ruse to end an insurance company's bid to collect a $524 million arbitration award, a North Carolina federal court heard this week.

  • June 13, 2024

    Bond Denial Upheld For Army Construction Project

    An Illinois federal judge affirmed an arbitration award relieving two insurers of covering a $1.8 million bond issued to a subcontractor retained for a U.S. Army construction project, upholding the arbitrator's finding that the status of the project wasn't accurately represented at the time of bond procurement.

  • June 13, 2024

    Insurance Cases Remain High Despite 2023 Downturn

    Though insurance litigation in federal district courts took a slight dip in 2023, diverging from the upward trend that insurance cases have exhibited since 2016, the number of cases initiated last year remained the second-highest number filed over a 10-year span, according to a report by Lex Machina.

  • June 12, 2024

    8th Circ. Judge Calls Car Sex 'Clearly Foreseeable' In HPV Suit

    An Eighth Circuit judge said Wednesday that having sex in a vehicle is "clearly foreseeable," challenging Geico's contention that such activity does not constitute normal use of an automobile in a coverage suit over a woman's claim that she contracted HPV during sexual encounters in a policyholder's car. 

  • June 12, 2024

    Judge Won't Trim $18M Shareholder Settlement Coverage Suit

    A Pennsylvania federal judge declined to toss certain bad faith allegations against an insurer accused of wrongfully denying coverage for an $18 million settlement between an asset management company and a group of shareholders, adopting a magistrate judge's recommendation that the company sufficiently alleged its claim of bad faith.

  • June 11, 2024

    Precedent Favors Nationwide In Mich. Tax Fight, Judge Says

    A Michigan Court of Appeals judge said Tuesday that the state's tax agency was asking the court to turn its back on recent precedent to hold that Nationwide entities couldn't file as a unitary business to share insurance tax credits across their group members.

  • June 11, 2024

    Travelers Says No Coverage For Investment Bank's Bond Row

    A Travelers unit said it doesn't owe directors and officers coverage to an investment bank accused of misleading bondholders into investing in a sports complex development project, telling an Illinois federal court the policy bars coverage for claims arising from the bank's performance of services for a client.

Expert Analysis

  • Understanding Insurance Is Key To Limiting Antitrust Liability

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    As regulators signal their intent to continue last year's aggressive campaign of corporate antitrust litigation, businesses must make active management of their liability insurance policies, along with a firm knowledge of the limits of their coverage, central to their strategies for limiting the enormous financial risks of enforcement, say attorneys at Nossaman.

  • High Court Should Endorse Insurer Standing In Bankruptcy

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    In Truck Insurance Exchange v. Kaiser Gypsum, the U.S. Supreme Court will examine bankruptcy standing doctrine as applied to insurers in mass tort cases, and should use the opportunity to eliminate spurious standing roadblocks to resolving insurer objections on their merits, says Frank Perch at White and Williams.

  • Lessons For D&O Policyholders From Pharma Co. Ruling

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    A California federal court's recent decision in AmTrust v. 180 Life Sciences, requiring insurers to advance defense costs for a potentially covered claim, provides a valuable road map for directors and officers insurance policyholders, rebutting the common presumption that a D&O insurer's duty to advance costs is more limited than under other policies, say attorneys at Pasich.

  • 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.