SEATTLE — A federal judge in Washington on March 6 denied a reinsurer’s motion to compel arbitration of its breach of contract case with an association of state public entities and, instead, established the choice of law and arbitrations provisions as void (Washington Cities Insurance Authority v. Ironshore Indemnity Inc., No. 19-54, W.D. Wash., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39633).
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — In a reinsurance dispute concerning coverage for asbestos losses, a New York federal judge on Feb. 27 found no error in her ruling that testimony demonstrated the value an insurer placed on its insured’s agreement that the policies contained aggregate limits (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Munich Reinsurance America Inc., No. 12-196, Munich Reinsurance America Inc. v. Utica Mutual Insurance Co., No. 13-743, N.D. N.Y.).
TRENTON, N.J. — A New Jersey federal judge on Feb. 26 dismissed for lack of jurisdiction a lawsuit brought by the former shareholders of a holding company for two New Jersey-based insurers against Aon Risk Services Cos. Inc. and related entities regarding excess coverage for losses from insurance and reinsurance business opportunities (Robert D. Ferguson, et al. v. Aon Risk Services Companies, Inc., et al., No. 19-9303, D. N.J., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 32513).
DENVER — An investor argues in his Feb. 25 appellant reply brief to the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that life insurers and investment companies “largely ignore the actual allegations, cherry-pick the ones that they wish to attack, and then label them all as conclusory, irrelevant, or insufficient” in his dispute with them concerning an alleged reinsurance scheme (Albert Ogles v. Guggenheim Investments, et al., No. 19-3154, 10th Cir.).
NEW YORK — In a dispute over the investment of $320 million in a failed Ponzi scheme, two financial advisers argue in a Feb. 14 motion to a New York federal court that there is no evidence that they substantially assisted a fraud or breach of fiduciary duty by issuing two valuation reports and, thus, they are entitled to summary judgment on aiding and abetting claims brought by an insurer in rehabilitation (In re Platinum-Beechwood Litigation, No. 18-6658, Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania v. Lincoln International LLC, et al., No. 19-07137, S.D. N.Y.).
MIAMI — A life insurer in a Feb. 20 motion asks a Florida federal court to dismiss a statutory bad faith claim in a co-trustees’ lawsuit alleging that a cost increase in a trust’s two universal life insurance policies was tied to captive reinsurance transactions that benefited the insurer’s corporate parent (Michael Foster, et al. v. Transamerica Life Insurance Co., No. 19-24969, S.D. Fla.).
DALLAS — A Texas federal magistrate judge on Feb. 18 recommended that an insurer be granted summary judgment on an insured’s declaratory relief claim over an increase in premium costs because the insured was given sufficient notice of the insurer’s assumption reinsurance agreement and another insurer’s rehabilitation plan (Don B. Chae v. American Fidelity Assurance Co., No. 19-157, N.D. Texas).
NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on Feb. 18 approved a request by an insurer in rehabilitation to return a deposit of $519,252.81 to the court’s registry in a case over procedures for advancement of fees and expenses under investment management agreements (IMAs) for third-party actions arising out of the insurer’s initial fraud lawsuit over the mismanagement and misuse of $320 million (In re: Platinum-Beechwood Litigation, No. 18-6658, B Asset Manager L.P., et al. v. Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania, No. 19-4487, S.D. N.Y.).
By Robert M. Hall
NEW YORK — Various summary judgment motions, including one from a receiver of a hedge fund on the issue of agency and imputation and one from an insurer in rehabilitation concerning a fraudulent conveyance claim, were filed Feb. 14 in a New York federal court in a case over misuse and mismanagement in a hedge fund scheme (In re Platinum-Beechwood Litigation, No. 18-6658, Melanie L. Cyganowski, et al. v. Beechwood Re Ltd., et al., No. 18-12018, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK — Nine summary judgment motions were filed Feb. 14 in a New York federal court lawsuit brought by the liquidators of two hedge funds over the defendants’ role in “one of the most spectacular hedge fund collapses”; the defendants generally argue in the motions that the broad allegations against them do not support claims for fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and aiding and abetting (In re Platinum-Beechwood Litigation, No. 18-6658, Martin Trott, et al. v. Platinum Management [NY] LLC, et al., No. 18-10936, S.D. N.Y.).
SANTA ANA, Calif. — The third-party administrators for a self-insured employee benefit plan in a Feb. 13 answer in a California federal case deny trucking companies’ allegations that they negligently failed to obtain reinsurance coverage for the plans and assert affirmative defenses (A&I Transport, Inc., et al. v. KG Administrative Services, Inc., et al., No. 19-1992, C.D. Calif.).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. — A federal judge in New York on Feb. 13 stayed a lawsuit accusing a captive reinsurer and home health employers of a scheme to cheat home health aides out of lost wages and benefits pending the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in a case concerning the issue of standing under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (Ynes M. Gonzalez de Fuente, et al. v. Preferred Home Care of New York LLC, et al., No. 18-6749, E.D. N.Y.).
AUSTIN, Texas — A Texas court on Feb. 10 approved a $8.12 million settlement providing a three-way resolution of claims asserted by a special deputy receiver (SDR) for Capson Physicians Insurance Co. (CPIC), affiliates of CPIC and a fronting program’s insurer (The State of Texas v. Capson Physicians Insurance Co., No. D-1-GN-19-000723, Texas Dist., Travis Co., 250th Jud.).
NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on Feb. 7 granted a Japanese insurer’s request for more time to answer a reinsurer’s complaint seeking an order of specific performance under reinsurance and retrocession agreements over the release of excess assets in an operating account (TAKATA Reinsurance Inc. v. AIU Insurance Company Ltd., No. 19-04586, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on Feb. 7 ordered a reinsurer to arbitrate its dispute regarding asbestos loss billings with an insurer and a reinsurer based on an arbitration clause but stayed the dispute against another insurer pending arbitration (TIG Insurance Co. v. American Home Assurance Co., et al., No. 18-10183, S.D. N.Y., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 22639).
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — A liquidator for an insolvent insurer argues in a Feb. 6 omnibus reply brief to reinsurers that a Puerto Rico federal judge should alter a decision sending a $150 million hurricane loss case to arbitration because the dispute over assets owed under reinsurance agreements must begin in the liquidation court (Integrand Assurance Co. v. Everest Reinsurance Co., et al., No. 19-01111, D. Puerto Rico).
ST. LOUIS — The Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 6 denied a farmer’s petition for rehearing en banc on its ruling that an arbitrator did not exceed his powers in denying a claim to a federally reinsured crop insurer based on the appraised value of a crop or by making a good farming practices determination (Terry R. Balvin v. Rain and Hail LLC, Nos. 18-3018 & 18-3061, 8th Cir.).
STATESVILLE, N.C. — A North Carolina federal judge on Feb. 3 refused to dismiss a breach of fiduciary duty case against a third-party health insurance administrator under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act over the administrator’s alleged failure to pay a plan participant’s medical expenses, which resulted in a loss to the plan when the expenses could not be claimed under a reinsurance policy (Technibilt Group Insurance Plan, et al. v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, No. 19-79, W.D. N.C., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19668).
OKLAHOMA CITY — A reinsurer in Feb. 5 motion asks an Oklahoma federal court for entry of a default against a telecommunications company and one of the company’s employees in a declaratory judgment action concerning coverage for an underlying personal injury lawsuit arising out of a vehicular collision because the parties failed to respond to the summons (Star Insurance Co. v. K&J Telecommunications, LLC, et al., No. 19-960, W.D. Okla.).