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A Recent Ruling by the Ninth Circuit Vindicates Excess Carriers’ Rights

By Carlos Needham | November 15, 2023

In an unpublished opinion issued on October 30, 2023, the Ninth Circuit ruled in favor of excess insurer Arch Insurance Company on various claims asserted by insured Vizio, Inc. arising from a settlement of class-action litigation regarding its Smart TV products (“Smart TV Litigation”) effected without Arch’s consent after Arch failed to provide a definitive …

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Ohio Court of Appeals Curtails Insured’s Ability to Seek Bad Faith Discovery Until Underlying Claim is Adjudicated

By Garrett Dudt | October 30, 2023

Earlier this month, a panel of the Ohio Court of Appeals in Ryan v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. et al., No. 29778, 2023 WL 6784954 (Ohio Ct. App. Oct. 13, 2023) found that a trial court erred by ordering State Farm Fire and Casualty Company (“State Farm”) to turn over information relating to …

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District Court Finds Reasonableness Determination Includes Allocation of Defense Costs Between Insured and Non-Insured Party

By Simone E. Haugen | October 16, 2023

In Lionbridge Technologies, LLC v. Valley Forge Insurance Company, No. CV 20-10014-WGY, 2023 WL 5985288 (D. Mass. Sept. 14, 2023), the Massachusetts District Court found where an insurance company has refused to pay for the defense of a policyholder’s corporate owner, a reasonable allocation of costs between the insured and non-insured parties is proper. The …

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Wisconsin Supreme Court Clarifies That “Property Damage” Under CGL Does Not Require Damage to Other Property

By Thomas Donofrio | October 4, 2023

In a recent construction defect decision, a majority of the Wisconsin Supreme Court held that the initial grant of coverage under a standard Commercial General Liability (CGL) insurance policy does not require that the damage be to property other than the insured’s own product or work. 5 Walworth, LLC v. Engerman Contracting, Inc., 2023 WI …

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Illinois Appellate Court Clarifies When Recovery Under Section 155 is Appropriate

By Jamie Gende | September 20, 2023

In a recent decision (August 9, 2023) issued by the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, the court confirmed that an insured who had made a claim for underinsured motorist (UIM) benefits could not assert an independent claim to recover attorney fees, costs and statutory damages for vexatious and unreasonable delay after she settled her UIM …

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Southern District of Ohio Applies Electronic Data Exclusion to Deny Coverage to The Home Depot for Data Breach Settlement

By Grace Delott | September 13, 2023

On August 16, 2023, The Southern District of Ohio issued a decision in The Home Depot Inc. et al. v. Steadfast Insurance Co. et al., holding that The Home Depot was not owed coverage for settlements with financial institutions to replace canceled bank cards compromised in a data breach. The decision was based upon an …

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New York Court Finds Coverage Counsel’s Communications with Adjuster Discoverable

By Sarah Elizabeth Melendez | August 24, 2023

The recent New York federal court decision in Cadaret Grant & Co. v. Great American Ins. Co., No. 21-6665 (E.D.N.Y. July 25, 2023) addresses a critical aspect that insurers must navigate when coverage litigation is instituted: the discoverability of communications between insurers and coverage counsel. At issue in Cadaret was coverage under a bond for …

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Eleventh Circuit Finds Insurers Have No Right to Recoup Defense Costs Absent Policy Provision

By Simone E. Haugen | August 15, 2023

On July 13, 2023, the Eleventh Circuit issued its decision in Continental Cas. Co. v. Winder Laboratories, LLC, holding insurers do not have a right to recoup their litigation defense costs when the underlying insurance policy does not provide for reimbursement, even when a reservation-of-rights letter includes such a right.  In its decision, the Eleventh …

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7th Circuit Upholds Policy Exclusion Involving Pilot With Expired Medical Certificate

By Jennifer Dancy | August 14, 2023

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals found that an insured is precluded from coverage for damages arising out of a fatal plane crash in May 2020, affirming the lower court ruling that an exclusion applies where the pilot lacks a valid and current medical certificate. The unanimous panel opinion, authored by Judge John Lee sitting …

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Business Judgment Rule Shields In-House Counsel and Outside Counsel from Claims of Tortious Interference of Insurance Contract

By Alyssa Vranak | April 24, 2023

On February 27, 2023, the Seventh Circuit issued its decision in Creation Supply, Inc. v. George Cherrie, et al, holding that Selective retains the sole power under the business judgment rule to deny claims. This decision prevented Creation from bringing a tortious interference claim against Selective Insurance Company of the Southeast (“Selective”) and its agents. Creation …

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