UTICA, N.Y. — Before a jury trial, a New York federal judge on Sept. 13 addressed a reinsurer and an insurer’s various motions in limine seeking rulings on the admissibility of certain matters in their dispute over the insurer’s breach of contract claim concerning coverage for settlements of asbestos claims (Utica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Century Indemnity Co., No. 13-995, N.D. N.Y.).
DALLAS — Because insurance policies are not “unconscionable adhesion contracts” and an insured’s due process rights were not violated, an insurer argues in a Sept. 11 reply to a Texas federal court that it is entitled to summary judgment on a declaratory judgment claim concerning an increase in premium costs because it followed an assumption reinsurance agreement and another insurer’s rehabilitation plan (Don B. Chae v. American Fidelity Assurance Co., No. 19- 157, N.D. Texas).
SAN DIEGO — In a dispute over the alleged fraudulent transfer of assets belonging to an insolvent insurance agency to avoid payment of a $3.2 million judgment, a California federal judge on Aug. 30 ordered that a $2.5 million transfer by a principal for the agency is avoided under the California Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act (UFTA) and dismissed claims against a technology company and its CEO pursuant to a $750,000 settlement with a reinsurer (Odyssey Reinsurance Co. v. Richard Keith Nagby, et al., No. 16-3038, S.D. Calif.).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — An insured failed to demonstrate any economic loss from entering into a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) and, thus, lacks standing to sue under California unfair competition law (UCL), a California federal judge ruled Sept. 12, finding that the RPA as part of a workers’ compensation program is not illegal and void (Pet Food Express Ltd. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 16-01211, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 156198).
NEW YORK — A federal judge in New York on Sept. 10 granted summary judgment to a runoff insurer because a criminal conviction against an investment company’s former executive extinguishes rights to indemnification and advancement of litigation expenses under investment management agreements (IMAs) (In re: Platinum-Beechwood Litigation, No. 18-6658, David Levy v. Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania, No. 19-3211, S.D. N.Y.).
NEW YORK — Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania (SHIP) on Sept. 4 filed amended cross-claims and a third-party complaint, alleging a Ponzi-like scheme consisting of reinsurance companies and related investment management and servicing entities in which fraudulent misrepresentations were made to gain investment control and discretion over $320 million of the runoff insurer’s reserves (In re Platinum-Beechwood litigation, No. 18-6658; Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania v. Beechwood Re Ltd., et al., No. 18-6658; Martin Trott, et al. v. Platinum Management (NY) LLC, et al., No. 18-10936, Melanie L. Cyganowski v. Beechwood Re Ltd., et al., Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania v. Beechwood Re Ltd., et al., and Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania v. PB Investment Holdings Ltd., et al., No. 18-12018, S.D. N.Y.).
LOS ANGELES — A reinsurer and its entities on Aug. 14 filed three petitions in a California court for a writ of administrative mandamus compelling the state’s insurance commissioner to vacate decisions that voided a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) in workers’ compensation insurance policies (California Insurance Co. v. Ricardo Lara, et al., Nos. 19STCP03478, 19STCP03473 and 19STCP03476, Calif. Super., Los Angeles Co.).
NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on Aug. 20 addressed and granted in part five motions to dismiss a first amended complaint, 10 motions to dismiss reinsurers’ third-party complaint and 14 motions to dismiss a runoff insurer’s third-party complaint in a lawsuit over a $320 million “massive fraudulent scheme” filed by a receiver of investment funds (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 — While dismissing the majority of a reinsurer and its entities’ counterclaims, a New York federal judge on Sept. 3 allowed a breach of good faith and fair dealing counterclaim against a runoff insurer to survive in a case over the misuse and mismanagement of $320 million (In re Platinum-Beechwood Litigation; Senior Health Insurance Company of Pennsylvania v. Beechwood Re Ltd., et al., No. 18-6658, S.D. N.Y., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149708).
NEW YORK — A New York justice on Aug. 26 dismissed Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BHI) because there are no allegations showing that its activities are sufficient to support general jurisdiction in three lawsuits alleging a scheme, in violation of the New York insurance law, to induce companies to enter into a reinsurance participation agreement (RPA) as a condition of issuance of workers’ compensation insurance policies (Breakaway Courier Corp. v. Berkshire Hathaway Inc., et al., No. 654806/2016, Current Lighting & Electric Inc., et al. v. Berkshire Hathaway Inc., et al., No. 652316/2017, Alternative Fuels Transportation Inc. v. Berkshire Hathaway Inc., et al., No. 652702/2017, N.Y. Sup., New York Co., 2019 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 4671).
DALLAS — While an insurer says it is entitled to summary judgment on an insured’s declaratory judgment claim concerning the ability to raise premium costs because it followed an assumption reinsurance agreement and a rehabilitation plan involving another insurer, the insured on Aug. 28 asked a Texas federal court to deny the motion because there is a genuine dispute of material fact (Don B. Chae v. American Fidelity Assurance Co., No. 19- 157, N.D. Texas).
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — A reinsurer and its affiliates in an Aug. 27 letter tell a federal judge in Connecticut that an insured’s request to compel discovery is premature and that the insured should be compelled to provide discovery on other workers’ compensation insurance programs (Charter Oak Oil Co. Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Inc., et al., No. 17-00689, D. Conn.).
SAN FRANCISCO — On Aug. 27, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals granted a reinsurer’s voluntary dismissal of its appeal over the confirmation of a final arbitration award over fees allegedly owed under two reinsurance participation agreements (RPAs) (Mike Rose’s Auto Body Inc. v. Applied Underwriters Captive Risk Assurance Company Inc., No. 19-16410, 9th Cir.).
MIAMI — A federal judge in Florida on Aug. 27 dismissed an insured’s breach of contract and fraud lawsuit against the government of the Republic of Nicaragua, a Nicaraguan insurer and a reinsurer arising from denied coverage for a fire loss because there was a lack of subject matter jurisdiction under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) (Farouk Morales v. The government of the Republic of Nicaragua, et al., No. 18-24301, S.D. Fla.).
NEW YORK — Finding a “lack of good cause” and “significant prejudice,” a federal judge in New York on Aug. 21 dismissed as untimely a runoff insurer’s fraudulent misrepresentation lawsuit against an investment bank and a financial services company for their alleged role in the investment of $320 million with the affiliates of a failed Ponzi scheme (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., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141641).
JASPER, Ala. — In a complaint filed Aug. 27 in an Alabama federal court alleging negligence by the city of Jasper and its employees over sexual misconduct allegations in a jail, a woman also seeks a declaration that she is a judgment creditor as an assignee of the city’s insurer’s rights under reinsurance agreements (Whitley Goodson v. J.C. Poe Jr., et al., No. 19-1399, Jane Doe #3 v. J.C. Poe Jr., et al., No. 19-1392, Jane Doe #2 v. J.C. Poe Jr., et al., No. 19-1314, N.D. Ala.).
NEW YORK — Finding that an alleged insider did not offer any reason as to why a decision should be reconsidered, a federal judge in New York on Aug. 20 upheld his ruling denying dismissal of an aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty claim over the insider’s role in what two hedge funds’ liquidators describe as “one of the most spectacular hedge fund collapses” (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., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 142267).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — In a reinsurance dispute over payments for mine subsidence damages, an Illinois federal magistrate judge on Aug. 26 found that an insurance fund failed to show that an alter-ego exception applies to the general rule of no liability for a railroad company’s stockholder and failed to prove that a de facto merger occurred (Illinois Mine Subsidence Insurance Fund v. Union Pacific Railroad Co., No. 17-3199, C.D. Ill., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 144691).
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Reinsurers in two Aug. 21 filings argue that a federal judge in Puerto Rico should reject an insurer’s rehabilitator’s attempt to remand a case over $150 million in losses from two hurricanes to the insurer’s rehabilitation proceeding and, instead, send the matter to arbitration (Integrand Assurance Co. v. Everest Reinsurance Co., et al., No. 19-01111, D. Puerto Rico).
TRENTON, N.J. — The filed-rate doctrine precludes homeowners’ claims against a reinsurance broker, an insurer and a mortgage company over alleged violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act based on a lender-placed insurance (LPI) scheme involving kickbacks, including reinsurance premiums, a New Jersey federal judge ruled Aug. 15 (Edward Leo v. Nationstar Mortgage LLC of Delaware, et al., No. 17-05839, D. N.J., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 137824).