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Mealey's California Insurance

  • April 18, 2019

    Leave To File Renewed Class Certification Motion Denied In Workers’ Comp Insurance Cases

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California federal judge on April 17 denied leave to file a renewed motion for class certification in consolidated cases over a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) entered into by businesses when buying a workers’ compensation program because there was no reason for why the class definition could not have been initially sought (Shasta Linen Supply Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-158, Pet Food Express Ltd., et al. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-1211, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65807).

  • April 18, 2019

    Divided 9th Circuit Panel Vacates Man’s Sentence For Health Care Fraud

    PASADENA, Calif. — A 2-1 panel of the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 9 vacated a man’s 97-month sentence for 15 counts of health care fraud, holding that a federal court judge in California erred when calculating the defendant’s intended loss from the $8.4 million scheme (United States v. Michael Mirando, No. 17-50386, 9th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 10468).

  • April 17, 2019

    Judge: Residential Developments And Condominium Exclusion Bars Insurer’s Duty

    SAN FRANCISCO — A residential developments and condominium exclusion relieves a commercial general liability insurer of any duty to defend to contractors in an underlying breach of contract dispute involving a condominium project, a California federal judge ruled April 15 (Colony Insurance Co. v. Mt. Hawley Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-00519, N.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64407).

  • April 15, 2019

    Assignee Sues Insurer, Broker Seeking Coverage For $2.3M Default Judgment

    SAN FRANCISCO — An assignee of insureds on April 9 sued an insurer and an insurance broker in a California court, seeking to recover a $2,328,381 default judgment that was entered against the insureds in an underlying personal injury lawsuit (Maria Isabel Felix v. North American Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. 19-575198, Calif. Super., San Francisco Co.).

  • April 12, 2019

    Rulings In Favor Of Auto Insurer On Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims Affirmed

    SAN FRANCISCO — A district court did not err in dismissing an insured’s breach of contract claim and in granting an auto insurer’s motion for summary judgment on a bad faith claim because the insured was not owed any contractual benefits under the auto policy, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said April 10 (Maria Neumayer v. Allstate Insurance Co., et al., No. 17-56469, 9th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 10620).

  • April 11, 2019

    Plaintiff Failed To Show Insured Complied With Policy’s Pilot Warranty Endorsement

    SAN DIEGO — A California appeals panel on April 8 affirmed a lower court’s finding that a plaintiff failed to satisfy its burden of establishing that an insured completed an aircraft liability insurance policy’s warranty provision to warrant coverage for an underlying crash that killed the insured and his passenger and ignited a fire that allegedly caused $1.75 million in damages to the plaintiff’s property (Rocky Wright v. The Estate Of Walter Johnson, et al., No. E068412, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 2, 2019 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2421).

  • April 10, 2019

    Parties Tell Court Positions On Class Certification Issue In Workers’ Insurance Comp Case

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California federal judge was given a joint status report on April 8 by parties offering positions on a renewed motion for class certification in consolidated cases over a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) entered into by California businesses when they bought a workers’ compensation program (Shasta Linen Supply Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-158, Pet Food Express Ltd., et al. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-1211, E.D. Calif.).

  • April 2, 2019

    Judge: Insurer Has No Duty To Defend, Indemnify Against Dispute Over Unpaid Invoice

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California federal judge on March 29 granted a nonprofit organization and management liability insurer’s motion for summary judgment in a lawsuit seeking recovery of an unpaid invoice involving work on a fuel reduction project on lands that were owned in part by the city of South Lake Tahoe, finding that the underlying lawsuit arose as a result of purchase order contracts and fell under the scope of a policy exclusion (Cross Check Services, LLC v. Old Republic Insurance Company, No. 15-02113, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54540).

  • April 1, 2019

    23andMe, Insurer Jointly Dismiss Professional Liability Coverage Suit

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — The personal genome services provider 23andME Inc. and its insurer on March 19 filed a joint stipulation of dismissal of all claims and counterclaims in a coverage dispute over lawsuits arising from the insured's service of providing consumers with genetic data from saliva testing (Ironshore Specialty Insurance Co. v. 23andMe, Inc., No. 14-03286, N.D. Calif.).

  • April 1, 2019

    Insurer Did Not Act In Bad Faith When It Denied Coverage, 9th Circuit Affirms

    PASADENA, Calif. — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 29 affirmed a federal court’s ruling that a commercial general liability insurer did not act in bad faith when it denied coverage for an underlying employment practices lawsuit, finding that the insurer did not act unreasonably when it interpreted the term “intentional” in a policy exclusion to mean “voluntary” (Steven J. Berns v. Sentry Select Insurance Company, No. 17-56264, 9th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 9383).

  • March 29, 2019

    Panel Affirms Denial Of Reinsurer, Insurer’s Motion To Compel Arbitration

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — In a dispute regarding a program involving workers’ compensation insurance and a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA), a trial judge did not err in voiding an arbitration agreement included in a request to bind, a California appeals court held March 28, affirming denial of a motion to compel arbitration (Jackpot Harvesting Inc., et al. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. H044953, Calif. App., 6th Dist., 2019 Cal. App. LEXIS 278).

  • April 1, 2019

    Judge Says Insurer Owes No Defense, Indemnity For Costs As No ‘Suit’ Was Filed

    SAN DIEGO — A commercial general liability insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify insureds for costs incurred to investigate and repair alleged defects at a military training facility, a California federal judge ruled March 28, finding that no “suit” had been filed (Harper Construction Company Inc., et al. v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, PA, No. 18-00471, S.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53183).

  • March 28, 2019

    Insurer Sues Reinsurer For Breach Of Contract, Seeks $8.6M For Reimbursement

    RIVERSIDE, Calif. — A reinsurer breached its contract and is responsible for the reimbursement of $8.6 million for payment of claims under a commercial property policy, an insurer alleges in a March 25 complaint filed in a California federal court (Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance Co. v. The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co., No. 19-00531, C.D. Calif.).

  • March 27, 2019

    Parties Offer Modification Of Schedules In Reinsurance Participation Agreement Cases

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Parties on March 25 gave a California federal judge their proposal for modification to the schedules in two putative class actions over a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) entered into by hundreds of California businesses when they bought a workers’ compensation program (Shasta Linen Supply Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-158, Pet Food Express Ltd., et al. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-1211, E.D. Calif.).

  • March 27, 2019

    Reinsurers Sued For Failure To Pay Toward Asbestos Personal Injury Claims

    SAN FRANCISCO — An insurer accuses two reinsurers in a March 25 complaint filed in a California federal court of failing to pay amounts owed under facultative reinsurance contracts in connection with alleged liability to asbestos personal injury claims (Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania v. Transport Insurance Co., et al., No. 19-01532 N.D. Calif.).

  • March 27, 2019

    Panel Holds UCL, Other Claims Fail, Affirms Order Granting Anti-SLAPP Motions

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California appeals panel on March 22 affirmed a trial court’s decision granting motions filed by a debt collector and a health care provider to strike a debtor’s complaint because it was related to an underlying collection action filed against her and holding that her claims for violations of California’s unfair competition law (UCL), malicious prosecution and conversion all failed on the merits (Elisa Mejia v. Retailers Credit Association of Grass Valley, Inc., et al.,  No. C078461, Calif. App., 3rd Dist., 2019 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1959).

  • March 26, 2019

    Reinsurer Tells Court It Is Appealing Order Directing Registry Funds Payment

    SAN DIEGO — In a dispute over a $3.2 million judgment, a reinsurer filed a notice of appeal on March 21 of a California federal judge’s order directing $958,017.66 in funds in the court registry to another reinsurer as judgment creditor as well as the judge’s denial of a motion to intervene (Odyssey Reinsurance Co. v. Richard Keith Nagby, et al., No. 16-3038, S.D. Calif.).

  • March 26, 2019

    Insured Says Deductible Ruling In Asbestos Dispute Must Be Reversed

    LOS ANGELES — An insured involved in a long-standing asbestos insurance coverage dispute argues in a March 15 reply brief filed in the Second District California Court of Appeal that the appeals court should enforce its decision in a 2007 case and reverse a trial court’s finding that the insured’s attempt to recover more than $6.6 million in deductibles is time-barred (Truck Insurance Exchange v. Kaiser Cement & Gypsum Corp., et al., No. B278091, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 4, 2019 CA App. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 643).

  • March 25, 2019

    Federal Judge Finds For Insurer In Errors And Omissions Coverage Dispute

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on March 22 granted an errors and omissions insurer’s motion for summary judgment in its declaratory judgment lawsuit disputing coverage for an underlying lawsuit alleging that an insurance professional breached its duty of care in procuring insurance coverage for a client (General Insurance Company of America v. INB Insurance Services Corp., No. 18-03372, N.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 48362).

  • March 25, 2019

    9th Circuit Affirms Judgment In Insurer’s Favor In Flood Coverage Dispute

    PASADENA, Calif. — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 21 affirmed a lower federal court’s judgment in favor of an insurer in an insured’s breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit seeking coverage for underlying flood damage (John R. Fuchs, et al. v. State Farm General Insurance Company, No. 17-56182, 9th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 8333).