Specialty Lines

  • March 28, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    A marine insurer confirmed it's cooperating with Baltimore authorities after an insured cargo ship collided with the Francis Scott Key Bridge, music festival South by Southwest's class action coverage efforts were renewed, and North Carolina justices dismantled 30 years of intermediate appellate court adherence to "stacking" underinsured motorist policies.

  • March 28, 2024

    Foxwoods Tribal Owner Loses $76M COVID Insurance Appeal

    The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, which owns and operates the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut, did not meet a key burden when suing its insurer for more than $76 million in losses tied to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state's intermediate-level appeals court ruled Thursday in declining to revive the litigation.

  • March 28, 2024

    Wash. Appeals Court Asked To Mull COVID Coverage Question

    A Washington state court has halted litigation over the University of Washington's bid for COVID-19 business interruption coverage from a Liberty Mutual unit, asking a state appeals court to first determine whether the presence of COVID-19 satisfies UW's policies' direct physical loss or damage requirement and if a contamination exclusion applies.

  • March 28, 2024

    Flood Risk Disclosure Law Uptick Offers Insurance Upsides

    A growing trend of states adopting and implementing flood risk disclosure laws must continue, experts say, touting such laws as protecting consumers and informing efforts to mitigate climate change costs through insurance and other risk management efforts.

  • March 28, 2024

    5th Circ. Limits Broad Contract Liability Exclusions In SXSW

    The Fifth Circuit awarded policyholders a major victory over a thorny issue when it ruled that Texas music festival South by Southwest's insurer owed defense coverage for a ticket holder class action over unpaid refunds from the canceled 2020 festival.

  • March 28, 2024

    Insurer's $1.37M Suit Over Stolen Walmart Flare Gun Misfires

    An Oregon federal judge has thrown out a $1.37 million suit from Ascot Specialty Insurance Co. against Walmart Inc. seeking to hold the retailer liable for a fire started by a stolen flare gun, saying the insurer has failed to show how Walmart is responsible for a third party's criminal acts.

  • March 28, 2024

    NC Justices' Split Leaves Willful Violation Question Unsolved

    A dispute over coverage for a law firm accused of violating the Driver's Privacy Protection Act provided an opportunity for the North Carolina Supreme Court to interpret a policy exclusion for the willful violation of a statute, but experts say a deadlocked decision will leave the issue for another day.

  • March 28, 2024

    Insurer Ordered To Defend Legionnaires' Suits

    The insurer of a nonprofit providing housing to at-risk individuals in New York City must defend it in three underlying lawsuits alleging that numerous residents contracted Legionnaires' disease at two properties in the Bronx, a New York federal court ruled, finding a communicable disease exclusion inapplicable.

  • March 27, 2024

    NC Commissioner Says Insurance Mogul's Argument 'Mistaken'

    The North Carolina insurance commissioner asked the state's Supreme Court on Tuesday to allow him to give his take on a group of insurers' lawsuit against embattled mogul Greg Lindberg that alleges he pilfered the insurance companies as owner, saying if the court lets him submit an amicus brief he'll explain how Lindberg's main argument is "mistaken."

  • March 27, 2024

    2nd Circ. Weighs Broadening 'Claim' In Shareholder Dispute

    The Second Circuit questioned Wednesday whether it should use a New York state appeals court ruling to broaden the meaning of "claim" in a propane company's directors and officers policy with a Liberty Mutual unit, including not just an entire underlying lawsuit but the individual causes of action within.

  • March 26, 2024

    UK Marine Insurer Investigating Baltimore Bridge Crash

    Britannia, a British marine insurer, confirmed Tuesday that it is working with authorities in Baltimore after a container ship destroyed the city's landmark Francis Scott Key Bridge in a collision that experts say is likely to cost the insurance sector billions of dollars in claims.

  • March 22, 2024

    Ind. Factory Adds To Historic $112M Bad Faith Coverage Win

    A flooded factory building that was awarded $112 million in a historic bad faith win added to its victory Friday when an Indiana federal court denied its insurers' requests for a new trial and granted the factory more than $7 million in costs and interest.

  • March 22, 2024

    5th Circ. Revives Coverage Row Over SXSW Ticket Refunds

    Texas music festival South by Southwest's insurer must cover its defense in a class action by ticket holders who didn't receive refunds after the city of Austin canceled the March 2020 event because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Fifth Circuit said, reviving the dispute.

  • March 21, 2024

    AI Presents Risk To Insurers And Policyholders, Panelists Say

    The growing use of artificial intelligence presents a risk to both insurers and insureds, experts said during a webinar Thursday, advising policyholders and their attorneys on how to navigate novel issues arising from the use of AI in the insurance industry.

  • March 21, 2024

    Calif. Panel Revives Diner's COVID Sanitization Coverage Bid

    A California state appeals court revived a diner's bid for property insurance coverage of COVID-19 losses after it determined the restaurant credibly alleged direct physical losses and that the policy's language covering losses attributable to a virus applied to COVID-19 sanitization efforts.

  • March 21, 2024

    2nd Circ. To Weigh 'Claim' Meaning In Family Share Dispute

    The Second Circuit on Wednesday will hear arguments over whether a New York federal court erred in finding that a contract exclusion barred any duty a Liberty Mutual unit had to defend a propane company and two of its executives in a family shareholder dispute.

  • March 21, 2024

    6 Questions For ZestyAI CEO Attila Toth

    As California regulators push proposals aimed at luring back insurance companies to the state's challenged market, advanced modeling techniques have taken a prominent place in the debate over how to best price risk as traditional methods lose relevance. Here, Law360 talks to Attila Toth, chief executive officer of ZestyAI, a risk modeling company that sells artificial intelligence-based risk models to insurers seeking to refine their risk assessment capabilities.

  • March 21, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    The U.S. Supreme Court considered the NRA's free speech rights and whether an insurer had standing in bankruptcy court, Geico was slammed with a $164 million payout, the Sixth Circuit seemed hesitant to force Amway to pay its own defense costs and Metallica's COVID-19 coverage case faded to black.

  • March 21, 2024

    Calif. Regulators' Pitch On Insurance Reform Draws Scrutiny

    Two regulations proposed to help lure insurers back to California's market by speeding up the state's rate approvals and allowing insurers to use catastrophe models to set rates are drawing scrutiny as industry and consumer groups weigh their potential effects.

  • March 21, 2024

    Sanitizer Co. Faces Tough Ad Injury Coverage Bid In 2nd Circ.

    A company accused of falsely advertising that its sanitizing products were effective in disinfecting surfaces faces an uphill battle, experts say, as the Second Circuit is poised to hear oral arguments Monday over whether the company is owed coverage under its commercial general liability policy for an underlying class action.

  • March 19, 2024

    Metallica's Bid For COVID-19 Coverage Fades To Black

    California appellate justices on Monday upheld Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's of London's summary judgment win against heavy metal band Metallica's breach suit seeking coverage for shows canceled during the COVID-19 pandemic, siding with the lower court's order finding the policy's communicable disease exclusion precluded coverage as a matter of law.

  • March 19, 2024

    FTC Sends Benefytt's Sham Health Plan Buyers $100M

    The Federal Trade Commission is sending refund checks to hundreds of thousands of customers from the $100 million Benefytt Technologies Inc. paid to settle allegations that it deceptively marketed sham health plans as qualified under the Affordable Care Act.

  • 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

    Insurer Meets 6th Circ. Resistance In Bid To Undo Amway Win

    Sixth Circuit judges appeared skeptical Tuesday of an AIG unit's argument that it shouldn't have to defend and indemnify Amway Corp. in copyright litigation, with one judge saying he doubted Amway's self-insured policies should take priority over an AIG internet policy.

  • March 19, 2024

    State Farm Must Face Wire Fraud Coverage Suit

    A State Farm unit can't escape a property owners association's suit seeking directors and officers coverage for underlying litigation stemming from an alleged wire fraud incident, a California federal court ruled, saying the association's claimed loss falls within the basic scope of coverage.

Expert Analysis

  • Exploring Middle-Market M&A Trends In 2023 And Beyond

    Author Photo

    Middle-market merger and acquisition activity this year was affected by a number of economic, legal and regulatory shifts, with certain trends pointing to favorable transaction conditions in 2024, say Jason Brauser and William Goodling at Stoel Rives.

  • Del. Insurance Co. Liquidation Reveals Recovery Strategies

    Author Photo

    Arrowood's recent liquidation in the Delaware Chancery Court offers a positive development for policyholders and claimants, providing access to guaranty association protections amid the company's demise, say Timothy Law and Ann Kramer at Reed Smith.

  • The Basics Of Law Firm Cyber Liability Insurance Applications

    Author Photo

    Cyber liability insurance has become a common consideration for law firms as cyber threats have escalated, but these insurance forms can be quite complicated given the nature of the industry and associated risks, so simply filling out the form won't necessarily result in an ideal policy for your firm, says Kevin Haight at WAMS.

  • Insurance Considerations For Cos. Assessing New AI Risks

    Author Photo

    Because no two businesses will have the same artificial intelligence risk profile, they should consider four broad risk categories as a baseline for taking a proactive approach to guarding against AI-related exposures, say attorneys at Hunton.

  • AI Brings New Insurance Concerns For Healthcare Providers

    Author Photo

    As the healthcare industry increasingly invests in medical artificial intelligence tools, it confronts a variety of liability risks that necessitate careful consideration and potential recalibration of providers' insurance programs, say Marialuisa Gallozzi and Megan Mumford Myers at Covington.

  • 3 AI Regulation Developments Insurers Must Follow

    Author Photo

    Insurance regulators continue to actively develop regulations and guidance on the use of artificial intelligence, so insurers should be aware of recent developments from the Colorado Division of Insurance, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and the New York Department of Financial Services, say attorneys at Willkie.

  • Deal Over Jets Stranded In Russia May Serve As Blueprint

    Author Photo

    In the face of a pending "mega-trial" over leased airplanes held in Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, a settlement between leading aviation lessor AerCap Holdings NV and NSK, the Russian state-controlled insurance company, could pave the way for similar deals, say Samantha Zaozirny and Timeyin Pinnick at Browne Jacobson.

  • How Shareholder Activists Are Targeting Insurers

    Author Photo

    As shareholder activists take a closer look at the insurance industry, they are pushing insurers to take value-enhancing and climate-related measures — but insurers can prepare by anticipating activist concerns, maintaining robust shareholder engagement, and considering changes in response to the universal proxy rules, say attorneys at Debevoise.

  • Unlocking Value In Carve-Out M&A Transactions

    Author Photo

    Some of the largest mergers and acquisitions in 2023 were carve-out transactions, and despite their unique intricacies and challenges, these transactions offer both buyers and sellers the opportunity to generate outsized returns in an otherwise vigorously competitive landscape, when carefully planned and diligently executed, say Kevin Crews and Rami Totari at Kirkland.

  • Tips For Negotiating Strong D&O Insurance Protection

    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
    Author Photo

    D&O insurance is often the last line of defense for the personal assets of a director or officer, so taking the time to negotiate improvements to their D&O policies and ensuring that the coverage is appropriate for the insureds' risk profile can greatly improve the chances that their policies will protect them when they need coverage the most, says Thomas Bentz at Holland & Knight.

  • Insurers Should Prepare For 'Black Swan' Climate Disasters

    Author Photo

    As rapid climate change results in increased risk of casualties and property loss from rare, severe weather events, the insurance industry should take five crucial steps toward evolving and continuing operations, including advanced analytic techniques and investments in alternative energy sources, say Stephen Brown and Irena Maier at Wilson Elser.

  • 3 Quirks Of New Jersey Insurance Coverage Law

    Author Photo

    There are a multitude of state-specific requirements and nuances that make New Jersey insurance law unique, including in the areas of duty to defend, reservation of rights and bad faith, say attorneys at Goldberg Segalla.

  • How Del. 'Arising Out Of' Ruling May Affect Insurance Cases

    Author Photo

    The Delaware Supreme Court decision in Ace American Insurance v. Guaranteed Rate focused on a professional services exclusion, but the ruling has wide-ranging application in insurance coverage disputes involving any exclusions that employ "arising out of" or similar prefatory language, say Keith McKenna and Maria Brinkmann at Cohen Ziffer.