Specialty Lines

  • May 30, 2024

    Justices Revive NRA's Free Speech Claims Against NY Official

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the National Rifle Association can proceed with certain claims in its lawsuit alleging that a former New York state official violated the gun rights group's free speech protections by pressuring financial institutions to cut ties with it.

  • May 29, 2024

    Surety Seeks Over $2.75M In Prison Fencing Work Coverage

    A construction surety told a West Virginia federal court Wednesday that subcontractors for a prison fencing project must reimburse it for more than $2.75 million in losses it incurred while settling faulty work claims asserted by the project's general contractor.

  • May 29, 2024

    Nationwide Says Hyundai, Kia Owe $7.7M For Engine Claims

    Nearly a dozen Nationwide insurers told a California federal court Wednesday that Hyundai and Kia are on the hook for 829 engine failure and engine fire claims totaling over $7.7 million in damages resulting from alleged engine defects in certain 2011-2019 vehicle models.

  • May 28, 2024

    $10M Policy Excludes Tobacco Group's Suit, Court Told

    An insurer told a North Carolina federal court Tuesday that it doesn't owe coverage to a tobacco growers' cooperative saddled with paying out a $100 million settlement for farmers, arguing that its $10 million policy excludes contract claims.

  • May 28, 2024

    Frontier, Ex-CEO Settle $21.8M Life Insurance Benefits Feud

    Frontier Communications and Leonard Tow, its former CEO and the top executive of a predecessor, have privately settled a feud surrounding tens of millions in split-dollar life insurance policies, with both sides asking a Connecticut state court judge to withdraw a $21.8 million prejudgment remedy order issued last month.

  • May 28, 2024

    US Property Insurers See Record Investment Income In 2023

    U.S. property and casualty insurers earned a record income of $73.9 billion from their investments in 2023, market analyst AM Best reported Tuesday, a bright spot for an industry beset by underwriting losses connected to natural disasters and high inflation.

  • May 28, 2024

    OpenText Says Excess Insurer Can't Join Merger Spat

    OpenText urged a Michigan federal court to keep an excess insurer out of a coverage dispute stemming from an underlying class action over the software company's merger with Covisint, arguing that the insurer's reasons behind wanting to intervene are speculative and unripe.

  • May 23, 2024

    Calif. High Court Deals Loss To Policyholder In COVID-19 Suit

    The California Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the coronavirus generally doesn't cause the kind of damage to property that would trigger coverage under an insurance policy, handing a win to a Chubb insurance company in one of the last major venues for pandemic coverage litigation.

  • May 23, 2024

    Colo. AI Bias Law Brings Little Certainty For Insurance Sector

    Colorado enacted the nation's first comprehensive regulatory scheme for protecting consumers from discriminatory and biased artificial intelligence systems, sending a warning signal to an insurance sector bracing for increased scrutiny and risks related to the technology.

  • May 23, 2024

    How An Ex-Attorney Turned Mediator Approaches Conflict

    Drawing from his 25-year career as an attorney litigating primarily insurance coverage disputes, Steven Schulwolf founded Schulwolf Mediation to help parties reach effective resolutions in even the toughest cases.

  • May 23, 2024

    Insurance Litigation Week In Review

    Policyholders suffered losses over COVID-19 coverage claims before the California Supreme Court and Fourth Circuit, the California high court weighed whether an exclusion rendered virus coverage illusory and if a policyholder's unfair competition claim against State Farm was untimely, and the Tenth Circuit questioned the scope of absolute pollution exclusions.

  • May 23, 2024

    2nd Circ. Revives Insurer's $2.5M Suit Over Valuation Software

    The Second Circuit on Thursday revived an insurer's indemnification bid against software company Audatex for $2.5 million in costs from a suit alleging its use of Audatex's valuation software resulted in underpayment for totaled cars, concluding the lower court erred in finding the suit didn't result from the insurer's use of Audatex's software.

  • May 23, 2024

    NC High Court Grants Review In Clothier's Virus Coverage Suit

    North Carolina's top court on Thursday agreed to take up a clothing company's coverage appeal for COVID-19 losses against Zurich after a lower appellate panel found the virus did not cause the kind of physical loss or damage necessary to invoke coverage.

  • May 23, 2024

    Antitrust Concerns Persist For New UN Insurance Group

    A new United Nations insurance-climate initiative demonstrates a continued interest among regulators for promoting a more sustainable industry, but experts say antitrust concerns and industry participation raise questions about its potential efficacy.

  • May 23, 2024

    4th Circ. Rules No Coverage For Mars' COVID Losses

    Candymaker Mars Inc. can't get coverage from Factory Mutual Insurance Co. for its COVID-19-related losses, the Fourth Circuit ruled Thursday, further rejecting Mars' bid to certify a question to the Virginia Supreme Court.

  • May 23, 2024

    Ark. Judge Sides With Insurer's Cyber Policy Interpretation

    An Arkansas federal judge ruled an insurer correctly evaluated a telemarketing company's losses from a cyberattack, agreeing that "normal operating expenses" the company paid from revenue during that period aren't included in the loss and that any other interpretation would give the company a windfall.

  • May 23, 2024

    Coverage Suit Paused Until Resolution Of Gun Sales Dispute

    A California federal court paused Crum & Forster's suit against a police gun and fitness club and the city of Los Angeles over coverage for underlying actions brought by officers accusing the club of selling them stolen handguns, citing factual overlap between the actions.

  • May 22, 2024

    Ill. Justices Weigh Zurich's Right To Recover $3M Flood Loss

    The Illinois Supreme Court weighed Wednesday whether Zurich American Insurance Co. can recoup $3 million from a subcontractor for water damage repair costs the insurer paid to a general contractor despite Zurich filing suit on behalf of a different insured.

  • May 21, 2024

    No Coverage For Real Estate Appraiser For Disciplinary Action

    Great American Assurance owed no defense to a real estate appraiser for a disciplinary action over claims of an "egregiously inaccurate" valuation, an Indiana federal court ruled, finding that her failure to disclose the underlying claims in her insurance renewal application warranted rescinding the policy. 

  • May 21, 2024

    Strategic Hiring Was The New Normal For BigLaw In 2023

    The 400 largest law firms by headcount in the U.S. grew more slowly in 2023 than in the previous two years, while Kirkland & Ellis LLP surpassed the 3,000-attorney threshold, according to the latest Law360 ranking.

  • May 21, 2024

    The Law360 400: Tracking The Largest US Law Firms

    The legal market expanded more tentatively in 2023 than in previous years amid a slowdown in demand for legal services, especially in transactions, an area that has been sluggish but is expected to quicken in the near future.

  • May 20, 2024

    Travelers Owed Tech Co. Defense In TM Row, 8th Circ. Says

    Travelers had a duty to defend a computer retailer in an underlying trademark infringement action filed by Cisco Systems, the Eighth Circuit affirmed Monday, saying it cannot conclude that coverage is barred by the policy's related-acts provision.

  • May 17, 2024

    Frontier Attacks Ex-CEO's $17M Life Insurance Tax Refund Bid

    Pointing to a 2004 arbitration agreement and criticizing its ex-CEO's compensation, Frontier Communications has asked a Connecticut state court judge to hang up on a call by Leonard Tow to litigate a $17 million demand for reimbursements on life insurance policies.

  • May 17, 2024

    Insurance Cos. Jointly Drop Policy Language Copyright Suit

    An insurance policy licensing group and an underwriting firm told a Connecticut federal judge Friday that they have agreed to end their dispute with two insurance underwriting competitors they accused of infringing their copyrights by copying certain language from a marine transportation policy and using it without permission.

  • May 17, 2024

    $5M Candy Recall Coverage Dispute Moved To Texas Court

    An insurer's lawsuit disclaiming coverage for a candy manufacturer over a near $5 million recall over metal fragments found in certain gummy candies belongs in Texas, a New York federal judge has ruled, finding that the action was "filed preemptively to deprive the natural plaintiff of its choice of forum."

Expert Analysis

  • How Shareholder Activists Are Targeting Insurers

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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

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    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.

  • Assessing D&O Coverage Amid Challenges To DEI Policies

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    As the recent backlash against corporate diversity, equity and inclusion policies leads to shareholder litigation and other legal challenges, companies bolstering their DEI efforts should ensure that their directors and officers and employment practices' liability insurance policies provide sufficient coverage for potential claims, say Peter Gillon and Patrick Blood at Pillsbury.

  • Potential Relief For Nevada Insureds Is On The Horizon

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    A proposed regulation recently issued by the Nevada Division of Insurance would severely restrict the state's new law prohibiting burning-limits policies, enacting welcome changes to address businesses' concerns that the law will make it harder to obtain cost-effective liability insurance, says Sheri Thome at Wilson Elser.

  • How Reps And Warranties Insurance Can Aid Sellers In M&A

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    Amid the current slowdown in the M&A climate, representation and warranty insurance offers sellers a number of advantages, including protection against fraud and possible leverage to insist on a no-seller-indemnity deal, say Alex Leibowitz and Eric Jesse at Lowenstein Sandler.

  • 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.

  • Nev. Insurance Law May Mean Turmoil In Liability Market

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    Nevada's new law prohibiting insurers from issuing or renewing defense-within-limits liability policies in the state could cause professional liability insurers to withdraw certain products or prohibitively increase premiums — and while an emergency regulation allows for exceptions, the situation remains fluid, says Joshua Leach at Atheria Law.

  • 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.