Mealey's Emerging Insurance Disputes

  • April 03, 2019

    Judge: Run-Off Exclusion Bars Coverage For Federal Subpoena Issued To Health Provider

    SHERMAN, Texas — A Texas federal judge on March 30 found that an insurance policy’s run-off exclusion bars coverage for an underlying subpoena issued to a behavioral health provider insured by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General (Oceans Healthcare, L.L.C. v. Illinois Union Insurance Company, No. 18-00175, E.D. Texas, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54844).

  • April 02, 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 01, 2019

    Employment-Related Practices Exclusion Does Not Bar Coverage, Federal Judge Says

    PORTLAND, Ore. — An Oregon federal judge on March 18 adopted a magistrate judge’s recommendation to grant an insured’s motion for partial summary judgment and deny a commercial general liability insurer’s motion for summary judgment in a coverage dispute over an underlying defamation counterclaim brought against the insured, agreeing with the magistrate that the employment-related practices exclusion does not bar coverage (Technical Security Integration, Inc. v. Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company, No. 14-1895, D. Ore., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43823).

  • April 01, 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 01, 2019

    Federal Judge: Intellectual Property Exclusion Bars Coverage For Trade Secret Suit

    ORLANDO, Fla. — Granting an insurer’s motion to dismiss an insured’s breach of contract lawsuit, a Florida federal judge held March 20 that a business and management indemnity insurance policy’s intellectual property exclusion bars coverage for underlying claims that the insured misappropriated trade secret data (Benjamin & Brothers, LLC v. Scottsdale Indemnity Company, No. 18-1807, M.D. Fla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45483).

  • April 01, 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

    Judge Denies Weinstein’s Motion To Stay Litigation As To Insurers’ Duty To Defend

    NEW YORK —Finding that continuing litigation over insurers’ duty to defend Harvey Weinstein against 11 sexual assault and sexual harassment lawsuits does not present a risk of prejudice or interfere with Weinstein's constitutional rights, a New York federal judge on March 28 denied Weinstein’s motion to stay in part (Federal Insurance Company, et al. v. Harvey Weinstein, No. 18-02526, S.D. N.Y., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53165).

  • March 29, 2019

    Panel Dismisses Cosby’s Appeal Of Ruling Allowing Insurer To File Supersedeas Bond

    BOSTON —The First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 27 ordered the voluntary dismissal of William H. Cosby Jr.’s appeal of a lower court's grant of his insurer's motion to file a supersedeas bond in a coverage dispute over underlying defamation lawsuits arising from sexual assault claims (AIG Property Casualty Co. v. William H. Cosby Jr., et al., No. 17-1505, 1st Cir.).

  • March 29, 2019

    Federal Magistrate Stays Professional Liability Dispute Pending Arbitration

    SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah federal magistrate judge on March 26 stayed an insured’s declaratory judgment lawsuit seeking professional liability coverage for an underlying suit brought by a patient, finding that an arbitrator should decide the issue of arbitrability (Brevan Baugh v. Allied Professionals Insurance Company, No. 18-0074, D. Utah, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51652).

  • March 29, 2019

    Texas High Court Stands By Conditional Grant Of Mandamus Relief To CGL Insurer

    AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Supreme Court refused to rehear its finding that a lower court erred when it denied a commercial general liability insurer's motion to dismiss a law firm's declaratory judgment lawsuit, according to its March 29 orders pronounced (In Re Houston Specialty Insurance Company, No. 17-1060, Texas Sup.).

  • March 28, 2019

    Claims Assert ‘Purposeful Attack’ By Insured; No Coverage Triggered, Panel Affirms

    HARRISBURG, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Superior Court on March 26 affirmed a lower court’s finding that an insurer has no duty to defend its insured against an underlying assault and battery lawsuit because the alleged assault was not an accident but was an intentional tort that is not covered under the insured’s homeowners and umbrella insurance policies (Margaret M. Kiely v. Philadelphia Contributionship Insurance Company, No. 1957 EDA 2018, Pa. Super., 2019 Pa. Super. LEXIS 277).

  • March 28, 2019

    Judge Dismisses Third-Party Complaint Against Insurance Agents As Premature

    MIAMI —A Florida federal judge on March 26 dismissed without prejudice an insured’s third-party complaint alleging that its insurance agents failed to procure adequate insurance coverage for an underlying wrongful death lawsuit, finding that the insured “must maintain inconsistent positions if the third-party complaint is allowed to proceed” (AIX Specialty Insurance Company v. Members Only Management, LLC, et al., No. 18-60471, S.D. Fla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49768).

  • March 27, 2019

    Judge: Prior Acts Exclusion Bars Coverage For Director But Not For Corporate Entity

    SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah federal judge on March 22 found that a directors and officers liability insurance policy’s prior acts exclusion does not excuse the insurer from defending its corporate entity insured against an underlying qui tam lawsuit but does apply to bar coverage for the entity’s director (Center For Excellence In Higher Education, Inc., et al. v. RSUI Indemnity Company, No. 17-1329, D. Utah, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 48413).

  • 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 22, 2019

    Judge Refuses To Sever, Stay Action Against Broker In Professional Liability Suit

    NEWARK, N.J. — A New Jersey federal judge on March 20 denied an insurance broker’s motion to sever and stay a third-party action against it in a dispute over professional liability coverage, finding that the insurer’s declaratory judgment lawsuit is “indisputably intertwined” with the insured’s third-party claim against the broker (Twin City Fire Insurance Company v. Ovation Fund Services, LLC, et al., No. 18-14944, D. N.J., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45805).

  • March 22, 2019

    Voluntary Payment Cannot Be Recovered By Insurer, 5th Circuit Panel Affirms

    NEW ORLEANS — Based on the answer to a certified question to the Mississippi Supreme Court, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March 21 affirmed a district court’s ruling that Mississippi’s voluntary payment doctrine bars an insurer from recovering a settlement payment made on behalf of an additional insured that the insurer believed was not covered under the policy because the payment was not made under compulsion (Colony Insurance Co. v. First Specialty Insurance Corp., No. 17- 60094, 5th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 8535).

  • March 21, 2019

    Judge: Professional Liability Insurer Has No Duty To Defend Malpractice Lawsuit

    BILLINGS, Mont. — Adopting a magistrate judge’s report in its entirety, a Montana federal judge on March 18 granted a health organization professional liability insurer’s motion for summary judgment in its declaratory judgment lawsuit challenging coverage under two policy periods for an underlying malpractice lawsuit alleging that its insured failed to properly diagnose a patient’s breast cancer during her annual mammogram (Capitol Specialty Insurance Corporation v. Big Sky Diagnostic Imaging, LLC, No. 17-54, D. Mont., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45234).

  • March 21, 2019

    Florida High Court Asked Whether Insurer Has Standing To Sue Insured’s Counsel

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Florida appeals panel on March 20 granted an insurer’s motion to certify to the Florida Supreme Court the question of whether it has standing to maintain a malpractice lawsuit against counsel who was hired to represent its insured where it has a duty to defend (Arch Insurance Company v. Kubicki Draper, LLP, No. 4D17-2889, Fla. App., 4th Dist., 2019 Fla. App. LEXIS 4185).

  • March 19, 2019

    Professional Negligence Claim Not Timely Made And Reported, Federal Judge Rules

    KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A Kansas federal judge on March 11 found that professional negligence claim against a land surveyor insured was not made and reported before the expiration of a professional liability insurance policy’s basic extended reporting period, granting the insurer’s motion for summary judgment (Aspen Square, Inc. v. American Automobile Insurance Company, No. 18-2255, D. Kan., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38364).

  • March 19, 2019

    Judge: No Professional Liability Coverage Owed For Claims Against Property Manager

    MADISON, Wis. — A Wisconsin federal judge on Feb. 27 found that a professional liability insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its property manager insured against an underlying lawsuit alleging that the insured was dishonest about their operation and management of a student housing project at an Illinois college (The Hanover Ins. Co. v. BMOC, Inc., et al., No. 18-325, W.D. Wis., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 30764).