General Liability

  • March 19, 2024

    Ky. Woman Gets $164M Verdict In Geico Roadside Crash

    A Kentucky state jury on Monday hit auto insurance giant Geico with a $164 million verdict over claims it negligently sent a tow truck out on a roadside assistance job only for it to ultimately rear-end a motorist stopped at a red light, leaving her a quadriplegic.

  • March 19, 2024

    Uber, Progressive Unit Settle NC Widower's Coverage Fight

    The widower of an Uber Eats driver who died in a car crash on the job has settled his lawsuit seeking a payout for the accident from the ride-hailing giant and its insurer, according to a notice filed in North Carolina federal court.

  • March 19, 2024

    Allstate Seeks To Trim $10M Conn. Shotgun Injury Suit

    Allstate Insurance Co. wants a Connecticut federal court to cut four of five claims from a lawsuit brought by a man demanding $10 million that he won from a homeowner who seriously injured him with a shotgun blast, arguing that the victim asserted causes of action that are duplicative or unavailable to him.

  • March 18, 2024

    Justices Tilt Toward NRA In Free Speech Row With Regulator

    A cautious U.S. Supreme Court seemed poised Monday to rule in favor of the National Rifle Association in a case over allegations that a former New York state official pressured financial institutions to cut ties to the National Rifle Association in violation of its free speech rights.

  • March 18, 2024

    Colo. Wildfire Plaintiffs Say Xcel Trial Plan Would Sow 'Chaos'

    Nearly 4,000 Colorado property owners suing Xcel Energy over a 2021 wildfire have argued that the utility's proposal to try all of their liability claims together would create a "chaotic and expensive mess" and potentially result in "serial juries" awarding different damages later on.

  • March 16, 2024

    Up Next At High Court: Gov't Jawboning & Retaliatory Arrests

    The U.S. Supreme Court has a packed oral arguments calendar this week that includes disputes over the Biden administration's work with social media companies to combat misinformation, the appropriate evidence standard for bringing retaliatory arrest claims and whether the federal government can object to a consent decree entered into by three states.

  • March 15, 2024

    Fla. Jury Lets Insurer Off Hook For $12M Award

    A Florida federal jury on Friday found that National Indemnity Company of the South did not act in bad faith in its handling of claims against a Florida Keys construction and landscaping company and the company's employee over a fatal car crash that led to an $11.8 million judgment.

  • March 14, 2024

    'Secret Meeting' Settlement OK Draws Mich. Justices' Scrutiny

    A Michigan Supreme Court justice expressed discomfort Thursday with the idea that government officials could ratify a settlement in a closed-door meeting without consequences, in a case brought by three insurers against a county government's road agency trying to back out of a settlement to which it says it never agreed. 

  • March 14, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    A divided Colorado Supreme Court expanded application of the state's notice-prejudice rule, the Fourth Circuit tossed a COVID-19 coverage class action and the Eighth Circuit considered whether insurers' billing agreements with healthcare providers violated Minnesota's No-Fault Act. Here, Law360 takes a look at this week's top insurance news.

  • March 14, 2024

    8th Circ. Weighs If No-Bill Agreements Break Minn. Law

    The Eighth Circuit carefully considered arguments Thursday between six Farmers units and a policyholder class as to whether the carriers' agreements with healthcare providers restricted the class's medical expense coverage in violation of Minnesota law, giving little indication of which way it leaned.

  • March 14, 2024

    Justices To Consider Insurer's Right To Participate In Ch. 11

    The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments Tuesday on whether Truck Insurance Exchange retains standing to oppose the proposed reorganization plan of two bankrupt manufacturers facing a bevy of underlying asbestos injury claims, after the Fourth Circuit blocked Truck's opposition since the plan was "insurance neutral."

  • March 14, 2024

    Insurer Climate Info Partnership Ups Federal Monitor's Role

    A new data-sharing partnership between the U.S. Treasury and state insurance regulators reflects the government's growing interest in understanding and monitoring climate change risks to insurance markets, experts say, but questions remain over the extent to which the data will fully reflect the industry's risks and carbon footprint.

  • March 14, 2024

    4th Circ. Weighs Insurer's Duty To Defend Land-Use Dispute

    The Fourth Circuit will decide whether to overturn a West Virginia federal ruling allowing an insurer to avoid covering a sustainable farm that has been accused by the oil and gas company of blocking it from drilling wells in a $4 million state land-use dispute. Here, Law360 breaks down the case in advance of the forthcoming decision.

  • March 14, 2024

    Justices To Weigh Free Speech, Gov't Oversight In NRA Row

    The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments next week over whether a former New York state official illegally pressured financial institutions to cut ties to the National Rifle Association, setting up a showdown between free speech rights and regulatory oversight.

  • March 14, 2024

    An Insurance Attorney's Call To Military Service

    Jeffrey Bristol of Parrish Law PA is a self-described "later-in-life lawyer" wearing many hats because he has dedicated more than a decade to serving in multiple branches of the U.S. armed forces.

  • March 14, 2024

    Towers Watson Ruling Energizes Bump-Up Supporters, Critics

    A Virginia federal court decision freeing Towers Watson's insurers from covering shareholder suit settlements totaling $90 million has offered carriers support for their use of the so-called bump-up exclusion and prompted criticism from policyholders that the exclusion has gone too far.

  • March 13, 2024

    Aetna Can't Avoid Bias Suit Over Fertility Treatment Policy

    Aetna must face a proposed class action alleging it readily covers fertility treatments for infertile heterosexual women but forces non-heterosexual women to spend thousands out of pocket before paying for their treatments, with a Connecticut federal judge saying it doesn't matter if the insurer didn't control the health plan's terms.

  • March 12, 2024

    Geico Policyholders Lose Cert. Bid In Pandemic Premium Suit

    An Illinois federal judge on Tuesday denied class certification in litigation claiming that Geico profited off the COVID-19 pandemic by charging excessive car insurance premiums, ruling that the policyholders who filed the lawsuit had not shown that their damages model could be calculated on a classwide basis.

  • March 12, 2024

    Gunmaker, Insurer Settle Coverage Of NY 'Ghost Gun' Suits

    A gunmaker accused by the New York attorney general and two cities of facilitating the creation of so-called ghost guns has reached a coverage settlement with one of its insurers, the parties told a Florida federal court Tuesday, leaving the gunmaker's coverage claims against another insurer still pending.

  • March 12, 2024

    NJ Diocese Asks Court To Toss Insurer's Abuse Coverage Suit

    The Catholic Diocese of Trenton asked a New Jersey federal court to toss an insurer's action seeking to escape coverage for more than 200 suits alleging sexual abuse by clergy, saying the coverage dispute is "premature, vague, and ambiguous."

  • March 11, 2024

    Fla. Biz Owner Says Insurer Left Co. On Hook For $12M Award

    The owner of a Florida Keys construction and landscaping company told federal jurors Monday that it made no sense for National Indemnity Company of the South to tender the policy limits to his employee involved in a fatal crash while leaving the company exposed and forced to go to trial, where it was hit with an $11.8 million judgment.

  • March 11, 2024

    Travelers Owes No Coverage For Mo. Wall Mishap, Judge Says

    Travelers has no duty to provide over $1.4 million to a St. Louis area property developer for administrative expenses and loss of rental income stemming from a retaining wall failure, a Missouri federal court ruled Monday, finding such coverage didn't extend to additional insureds on a general contractor's policy.

  • March 08, 2024

    Exclusion Bars Coverage For Ga. Fair E. Coli Suit

    Nautilus Insurance Co. has no duty to defend or indemnify a harvest fair accused in an underlying state court suit of exposing two children to E. coli, a Georgia federal court has ruled, saying an infectious disease exclusion unambiguously precludes coverage.

  • March 08, 2024

    11th Circ. Declines To Hear Building Defect Coverage Dispute

    It's too early to determine whether a Florida federal court erred in its coverage determinations in a long-running construction defect insurance dispute, the Eleventh Circuit has ruled, finding that the "purported final judgment here does not dispose of all claims against all parties."

  • March 07, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The California Supreme Court heard COVID-19 coverage arguments, the Fifth Circuit ordered arbitration between a property owner and its domestic insurers, and a New Hampshire federal court said Liberty Mutual owes no defense for class action claims over a sleep machine cleaner.

Expert Analysis

  • Auto Insurers Should Reassess Calif. Diminished Value Claims

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    Many California auto insurers currently pay third-party claims for diminished value damages after a vehicle has been in an accident; however, federal decisions interpreting California law suggest that insurers may not have to pay some of these claims, says Charles Danaher at Sheppard Mullin.

  • In Ga., Promptness Is Key To Setting Aside Default Judgments

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    The Georgia Court of Appeals' recent vacating of a lower court's decision to set aside a default judgment against Samsung Electronics America is a reminder of the processes and arguments provided by Georgia's statutes for challenging default judgments — including the importance of responding quickly, says Katy Robertson at Swift Currie.

  • 1st Circ. Harvard Ruling Provides Primer On Policy Provisions

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    In its recent finding of no coverage for Harvard due to the school's failure to give Zurich American Insurance timely notice of its claim, the First Circuit provides a good analysis of the distinctions between occurrence and claims-made policies, including the rationale for differences in notice provisions, says Andrew Paliotta at Cozen O'Connor.

  • SEC's New Rules Likely Will Affect Cyber, D&O Insurance

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    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently adopted cybersecurity incident disclosure rules that could create new challenges that affect how public companies assess the risk of securities, corporate governance and cyber-related lawsuits, which may implicate novel insurance coverage issues, say attorneys at Reed Smith.

  • Potential Marijuana Status Change Would Shift Industry Risks

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    Cannabis companies and their insurers should pay close attention to how the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' move toward marijuana reclassification plays out, and the potential for a shakeup in the landscape for cannabis regulation at the state and federal levels, says Ian Stewart at Wilson Elser.

  • Key Provisions In Florida's New Insurer Accountability Act

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    Florida's recent bipartisan Insurer Accountability Act introduces a range of new obligations for insurance companies and regulatory bodies to strengthen consumer protection, and other states may follow suit should it prove successful at ensuring a reliable insurance market, say Jan Larson and Benjamin Malings at Jenner & Block.

  • Next Steps For Insurers After Ky. OKs Early 3rd-Party Claims

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    While insurers in Kentucky may face more statutory bad faith claims after a recent state Supreme Court decision clarified that third parties may bring these torts even before determination of coverage is finalized, insurers can adopt a variety of approaches to reduce their exposure, says Jason Reichlyn at Dykema Gossett.

  • Insurers, Prepare For Large Exposures From PFAS Claims

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    With thousands of lawsuits concerning per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances pending across the country, several large settlements already reached, and both regulators and the plaintiffs bar increasingly focusing on PFAS, it is becoming clear that these "forever chemicals" present major exposures to insurers and their policyholders, say Scott Seaman and Jennifer Arnold at Hinshaw.

  • What To Know About Duty To Settle Insurance Claims In Texas

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    Laura Grabouski of Holden Litigation examines the parameters of Texas insurers' duty to settle liability claims within the limits of the primary policy, as knowledge of the requirements — and the potential exposure from insureds, judgment creditors or excess creditors — can pay dividends in the era of nuclear verdicts.

  • Ga. Mirror-Image Rule Makes Settlements Fraught For Insurers

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    The Georgia Court of Appeals' recent decision in Pierce v. Banks shows how strictly Georgia courts will enforce the rule that an insurer's response to a settlement demand must be a mirror image of the demand — and is a reminder that parties must exercise caution when accepting such a demand, says Seth Friedman at Lewis Brisbois.

  • Insurance Ruling Shows Notice Letters Need Close Review

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    A Texas appeals court's recent disapproval of an insured’s presuit notice letter to Westchester Surplus Lines Insurance — which refused to quantify an alleged injury — should prompt courts to probe deeper when considering whether such a letter gives the insurer the information needed to resolve the claim or make a settlement offer, say Jennifer Martin and Timothy Delabar at Wilson Elser.

  • 11th Circ. Ruling May Impede Insurers' Defense Cost Recoup

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    The Eleventh Circuit's recent Continental Casualty v. Winder Laboratories ruling that insurers cannot obtain reimbursement of defense costs from their insureds where the policy itself does not require such reimbursement is likely to be cited as persuasive authority in Georgia and other states without clear precedent on the issue, say Christy Maple and Robert Whitney at Phelps Dunbar.

  • Groundbreaking Nev. Law May Alter Insurance Landscape

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    The Nevada Legislature recently passed a law prohibiting insurers from issuing liability policies with eroding limits provisions that has the potential to create massive shifts in the marketplace — and specifically in areas like professional liability, cyber, and directors and officers insurance, says Will Bennett at Saxe Doernberger.