Mealey's Catastrophic Loss

  • September 30, 2021

    6th Circuit Grants Insurer Permission To Appeal, Vacates, Remands Coronavirus Suit

    CINCINNATI — The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 29 granted a commercial insurer’s petition for permission to appeal a lower federal court’s order granting summary judgment in favor of restaurant insureds in a coronavirus coverage dispute over lost business income, vacating the lower court’s ruling as to the coverage issue alleged in the breach of contract and declaratory judgment claims and remanding for further proceedings.

  • September 28, 2021

    Policy’s Flood Deductible Is Ambiguous, Panel Says, Reverses Take-Nothing Ruling

    NEW ORLEANS — Finding that a policy’s flood deductible is ambiguous, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 24 reversed and remanded a federal court’s summary judgment ruling in favor of insurers in a general contractor’s bad faith lawsuit arising from flood damage at a hotel renovation.

  • September 27, 2021

    Federal Judge Dismisses Golden Corral Franchisor’s Coronavirus Coverage Dispute

    RALEIGH, N.C. — A federal judge in North Carolina on Sept. 8 granted an insurer’s motion for judgment on the pleadings and dismissed Golden Corral Corp. and Golden Corral Franchising Systems’ bad faith lawsuit seeking coverage for their financial losses arising from the suspension of their restaurant operations in response to the government orders prompted by the coronavirus pandemic, finding that the insureds have not plausibly alleged tangible, physical harm to their covered property or a tangible loss of their covered property.

  • September 24, 2021

    Illinois High Court: Depreciation Cannot Be Applied To ‘Intangible Labor Component’

    SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Illinois Supreme Court on Sept. 23 held that a homeowners insurer cannot depreciate the “intangible” cost of labor when determining the actual cash value of its insured’s loss as defined under the policy’s Dwelling coverage, affirming an Illinois appeals court’s answer to a certified question in a coverage dispute arising from wind damage but noting that it does not agree with all of the appeals court’s reasoning.

  • September 20, 2021

    Federal Judge Dismisses Consolidated Class Ski Pass Action Arising From COVID-19

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In an opinion filed Sept. 16, a federal judge in Missouri granted an insurer’s motion to dismiss a consolidated class action complaint seeking coverage for passes for ski resorts that were prematurely closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, finding that the plaintiffs failed to state a claim for breach of contract.

  • September 15, 2021

    Federal Judge Dismisses Multistate Real Property Owner’s Coronavirus Coverage Suit

    PHILADELPHIA — A federal judge in Pennsylvania said on Sept. 13 that although he “is sympathetic” to the insured and other similarly situated property owners who were affected by the coronavirus pandemic, the insured failed to demonstrate that it was entitled to coverage for its COVID-19 related losses.

  • September 15, 2021

    Panel Reverses Grant Of Insurer’s Motion To Compel Right To Repair Irma Damage

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Florida appeals panel on Sept. 8 reversed and remanded a lower court’s order that granted an insurer’s motion to compel the right to repair Hurricane Irma damage, finding that the order provided the insurer with injunctive relief in the nature of specific performance that was never supported by a pleading requesting that relief.

  • September 15, 2021

    Judge: Res Judicata Bars Hurricane Matthew Claims Against Remaining Defendant

    GREENVILLE, N.C. — A federal judge in North Carolina on Aug. 30 granted the remaining defendant’s motion for summary judgment in a Hurricane Matthew coverage dispute, finding that the doctrine of res judicata bars the insureds’ claims.

  • September 14, 2021

    Federal Judge Dismisses N.Y. Installation Company’s Coronavirus Coverage Dispute

    NEW YORK — A federal judge in New York on Sept. 13 granted an insurer’s motion to dismiss an installation company insured’s declaratory judgment lawsuit seeking Business Income, Extra Expense and the Civil Authority coverage for its losses arising from the coronavirus pandemic,  finding that the insured’s “loss of use” of its property alone does not qualify as a direct physical loss to trigger coverage.

  • September 09, 2021

    Dental Practice Offers No Allegation Of Physical Loss, Damage, 11th Circuit Affirms

    ATLANTA — The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 31 held that a dental practice insured failed to allege that an insurer breached an insurance policy's “Business Income,” “Extra Expense” and “Civil Authority” provisions in a coverage dispute arising from the coronavirus pandemic, finding that the insured did not allege anything that could qualify as physical loss or damage.

  • September 09, 2021

    Bad Faith Claim Cannot Proceed; Judge Says Insured Failed To Support Claim

    OKLAHOMA CITY — An Oklahoma federal judge on Sept. 7 granted a homeowners insurer’s motion for summary judgment on an insured’s bad faith claim after determining that the insured failed to prove that the insurer acted in bad faith in handling the insured’s claim for damages to his home caused by a windstorm.

  • September 07, 2021

    Insureds To Seek High Court Review Of 9th Circuit Ruling Compelling Arbitration

    SAN FRANCISCO — The owner and manager of a residential development ask the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Sept. 1 motion to stay the issuance of its mandate affirming a district court’s order compelling arbitration of an insurance coverage dispute against English underwriters for $5.66 million in hurricane damage while they petition the U.S. Supreme Court for review, writing that the Ninth Circuit’s ruling created a circuit split.

  • September 07, 2021

    Federal Judge Says Insured Did Not Sustain Direct, Physical Loss To Properties

    MIAMI — A Florida federal judge on Aug. 31 dismissed an insured’s amended complaint seeking coverage for business interruption losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic after determining that the insured failed to show that it sustained a direct physical loss to any of its properties as a result of the COVID-19 virus.

  • September 03, 2021

    Questions Of Fact Exist As To Whether Insurer’s Conduct Was Reasonable

    LAKE CHARLES, La. — A Louisiana federal judge on Sept. 1 denied an insurer’s motion seeking to preclude the insured from presenting testimony, evidence and argument regarding the insurer’s alleged bad faith conduct in handling the insured’s claim for tornado damages because questions of fact exist as to whether the insurer’s conduct was reasonable.

  • September 03, 2021

    No Coverage For COVID-19 Shutdown Orders; Insured Did Not Sustain Physical Loss

    NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on Aug. 31 dismissed an insured’s suit seeking coverage for business income losses sustained as a result of the shutdown orders issued in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic after determining that no coverage is afforded because the insured did not sustain any direct physical loss or damage as required by the policy.

  • September 01, 2021

    8th Circuit Panel Affirms Finding That Homeowners’ Insurer Acted In Bad Faith

    ST. LOUIS — The Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 30 affirmed a district court’s ruling that a homeowners’ insurer acted in bad faith in handling a homeowner’s claim for damages caused by a hailstorm because the insurer did not prove that it had a reasonable basis to deny coverage for the damages and repairs.

  • August 31, 2021

    Insured’s Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims To Proceed, Judge Says

    JACKSON, Miss. — A Mississippi federal judge on Aug. 26 denied a commercial property insurer’s motion to dismiss an insured’s breach of contract, bad faith and negligence claims after determining that the policy’s contractual limitations provision is unenforceable under Mississippi law.

  • August 26, 2021

    No Coverage For Automotive Dealerships’ COVID-19 Losses, Illinois Judge Rules

    CHICAGO — An Illinois judge on Aug. 23 granted an insurer’s motion for judgment on the pleadings in a breach of contract lawsuit brought by automotive dealerships after finding that their alleged business losses due to the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent shutdown orders are not covered, noting that unlike asbestos, “COVID-19 dissipates on its own without intervention.”

  • August 25, 2021

    Insured: Insurer Throws ‘Bedrock Principles Of Contract Construction To The Wind’

    ATLANTA — An insured on Aug. 17 defended its appeal asking the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court’s dismissal of its breach of contract lawsuit seeking coverage for its business losses that were “directly caused” by government “stay-at-home” orders in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, contending that as much as the insurer “would like Florida law to support its arguments, the fact remains that it does not.”

  • August 24, 2021

    Judge Upholds UCL Claim For Trip Policy Premium Refund After COVID-19 Cancellation

    LOS ANGELES — A California federal judge on Aug. 19 denied a motion for judgment on the pleadings of a woman’s claim that an insurer and underwriter violated California’s unfair competition law (UCL) by not refunding her post-departure travel insurance premiums for a policy on a cruise that was canceled due to COVID-19 but granted the defendants’ motion as to some of her state law claims.

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