NEW ORLEANS — A church insured recently asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court’s summary judgment ruling in favor of an insurer in its lawsuit alleging that the insurer breached the contract and acted in bad faith when it replaced roofing materials with lesser quality materials after the insured's property sustained hail and windstorm damage to its roof (University Baptist Church of Fort Worth v. Lexington Insurance Company, 18-11415, 5th Cir.).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. — In response to a motion to dismiss a case alleging that a captive insurance and reinsurance scheme cheated home health aides out of lost wages and benefits, the aides argue in a July 26 brief to a New York federal court that a captive insurer and affiliates’ “flawed” standing argument cannot keep out Employee Retirement Income Security Act claims (Ynes M. Gonzalez de Fuente, et al. v. Preferred Home Care of New York LLC, et al., No. 18-6749, E.D. N.Y.).
BOSTON — In a dispute over outstanding reinsurance billings for settlement payments made over sexual molestation allegations, an insurer argues in a July 19 surreply that a Massachusetts federal court should reject underwriters’ arguments regarding application of New York law and the parties’ intention to have a court rule on disputes that billings are barred by prior arbitration awards, which were raised for the first time in their reply brief to a motion to dismiss (Century Indemnity Co. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, No. 19-11056, D. Mass.).
OMAHA, Neb. — A reinsurer and its affiliates on July 26 asked a Nebraska federal court to dismiss insureds’ fourth amended answer, counterclaims and third-party claims and to strike a request for punitive damages in their breach of contract dispute over a workers’ compensation program involving a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) (Applied Underwriters Captive Risk Assurance Company Inc. v. Ramesh Pitamber & Kusum Pitamber, et al., No. 17-61, D. Neb.).
CHICAGO —A real estate services firm insured on July 17 sued its first-level excess professional liability insurer in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois for breach of contract and bad faith in a coverage dispute over an underlying fraudulent misrepresentation suit regarding a real estate appraisal the insured generated 13 years ago (Cushman & Wakefield of Pennsylvania v. Illinois National Insurance Company, No. 19-04790, N.D. Ill.).
ATLANTA — A Georgia appeals court received briefing in June as a man attempts to revive his action suing a John Doe defendant to pursue uninsured motorist benefits despite knowing both the actual party’s name and whereabouts (William Lawson v. Geico Casualty Co., No. A19A2011, Ga. App.).
ST. LOUIS — An air ambulance company on May 9 filed a brief in the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals contending that a district court wrongly determined that its membership plan constitutes an insurance business that is governed by North Dakota law. The company maintains that it is entitled to federal preemption of state law (Guardian Flight LLC v. Jon Godfread, et al., No. 19-1343, 8th Cir.).
NEW ORLEANS — An insurer recently asked the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court’s finding that it has a duty to defend its pastor insured against three underlying lawsuits alleging that he sexually assaulted three parishioners, arguing that the lower court’s construction of its policies’ sexual or physical abuse or molestation coverage “neither mentions nor distinguishes case law interpreting those same policy provisions in a manner that precludes a duty to defend” (Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company v. Terry R. Knighten, No. 18-50832, 5th Cir.).
PHILADELPHIA — Parties in an insurance bad faith lawsuit stemming from an automobile accident recently asked a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel to determine whether a federal judge erred in precluding an insured from providing testimony from her expert witness and whether the judge provided “confusing and erroneous” jury instructions as to the insured’s burden of proof (Maria Antonio v. Progressive Insurance Co., No. 19-1074, 3rd Cir.).
BOSTON — An insurer on June 18 filed a brief in the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals contending that a district court erred when it ruled that a second insurer, which was sued in an underlying case, did not owe an apartment management company a duty to defend a property damage lawsuit (Clarendon National Insurance Company v. Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company, No. 19-1212, 1st Cir.).
NEW YORK — To the extent that a New York bankruptcy court recognizes a foreign proceeding, creditors and parties in interest to a reinsurer’s bankruptcy proceeding ask in a July 16 motion that they be allowed to bring their claims against the debtor in their own proceedings and that those litigations not be subject to any stay (In re Beechwood Re, No. 19-11560, Chapter 15, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
UTICA, N.Y. — A reinsurer argues in a July 15 reply brief that a New York federal judge should reconsider a decision on the issue of collateral estoppel because a recent decision in a similar case “marks a major new development in this case” and requires dismissal of an insurer’s breach of contract claim in a case over coverage for settlements of asbestos claims (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Century Indemnity Co., No. 13-995, N.D. N.Y.).
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — An insurer’s rehabilitator on July 8 asked a Puerto Rico federal judge to lift a stay of a dispute between the insurer and various of its reinsurers regarding losses from two hurricanes and then remand the case to the insurer’s rehabilitation proceeding (Integrand Assurance Co. v. Everest Reinsurance Co., et al., No. 19-01111, D. Puerto Rico).
CHICAGO — A reinsurer asks an Illinois federal court in a July 8 motion to award it attorney fees and costs because an insolvent insurer’s liquidator’s motion to vacate a $437,000 arbitration award has “no chance of success” (Catalina Holdings [Bermuda] Ltd. v. Jennifer Hammer, No. 18-5642, N.D. Ill.).
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — An insolvent insurer’s stock owner, its president and vice president sued the Puerto Rico insurance commissioner and others on July 11 in a federal court in Puerto Rico, alleging that defendants engaged in a civil conspiracy to deprive them of their constitutional rights (Victor J. Salgado and Associates Inc., et al. v. Javier Rivera-Rios, et al., No. 19-01663, D. Puerto Rico).
ANDERSON, S.C. — A defendant accused of playing a role in an alleged scheme to defraud a multiple-employer self-insured health plan with fraudulent letters of credit (LOC) argues in a July 9 reply that the insurer’s special deputy receiver’s “weak tactics do not amount to evidence and will not win at trial” on the receiver’s claim under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act (Michael J. FitzGibbons, et al. v. Alton Atkinson, et al., No. 17-2092, D. S.C.).
UTICA, N.Y. — In response to a reinsurer’s request to renew a motion for reconsideration on allocation and collateral estoppel issues in light of a recent decision in a similar case, an insurer in a July 9 opposition calls that motion “frivolous and another reminder of the wasteful and vexatious way” the reinsurer has litigated the New York federal court case over coverage for settlements of asbestos claims (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Century Indemnity Co., No. 13-995, N.D. N.Y.).
LOS ANGELES — An insurer alleges in a July 3 complaint filed in a California federal court that a consulting group and others are responsible for a retail mall project’s property damages arising out of soil settlement caused by their faulty workmanship (Ironshore Specialty Insurance Co. v. Kling Consulting Group Inc., No. 19-05787, C.D. Calif.).
BOSTON — A rental company recently asked the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court’s finding that an insurance policy that lists it as an additional insured is excess to its own insurance policies in a coverage dispute arising from an underlying boom lift accident, arguing that the lower court erred in finding that either one of its policies was “other valid and collectible insurance” for the purposes of its decision on the priority of coverage (Scottsdale Insurance Co. v. United Rentals, Nos. 18-1593 and 18-1588, 1st Cir.).
OMAHA, Neb. — In a breach of contract case over a workers’ compensation program, insureds argue in a July 2 brief that a Nebraska federal court should not dismiss counterclaims asserted under California law against a reinsurer and its affiliates because a choice-of-law provision found in a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) is void (Applied Underwriters Captive Risk Assurance Company Inc. v. Ramesh Pitamber & Kusum Pitamber, et al., No. 17-61, D. Neb.).