The ALI Votes to Approve the “Restatement of the Law of Liability Insurance”

After nearly a decade of debate and controversy, the American Law Institute (ALI) voted to approve the much anticipated Restatement of the Law of Liability Insurance (RLLI) at its annual meeting on Tuesday, May 22, 2018.  The project that ultimately resulted in the RLLI was launched in 2010, under the direction of Reporter Tom Baker of the University of Pennsylvania School of Law and Associate Reporter Kyle D. Logue of Michigan Law School, and produced nearly 30 drafts through the lifecycle of the project, before
Continue reading...

Introducing Timely Notice: What’s New and Exciting in Insurance Law

Timely Notice is your on-the-go source for sharp takes and expert analysis of the latest trends, breaking news, and sea-changes in global insurance law and the insurance marketplace. With episodes hosted by Goldberg Segalla partners, including Jonathan Schwartz and Sharon Angelino, Timely Notice offers intelligent insights, frequently delivered, and in easy-to-digest episodes you can access any time. The podcast will feature discussions with outside and in-house counsel, claims professionals, underwriters, brokers, and other insurance industry professionals. Whether you listen on your
Continue reading...

A Window Opens? Are Defective Product Construction Defect Claims Covered Under Pennsylvania Law?

A recent decision from a Pennsylvania court highlights tension in Pennsylvania law regarding whether a construction defect claim involving consequential damages caused by a defective product involves a covered “occurrence.” Sapa Extrusions, Inc. v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 2018 WL 2045496 (M.D. Pa. May 1, 2018). In this coverage action, the insured, a window frame manufacturer, sought a declaratory judgment that it was owed coverage for an underlying action brought by a customer that used the window frames to manufacture
Continue reading...

Pro Rata v. All Sums: When Viking Pump Applies

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently changed the tune of a decades-old insurance coverage dispute when it decided to apportion liability exposure for multiple instances of environmental contamination on an “all sums” basis. In the matter of Olin v. OneBeacon, Olin, a manufacturing company, sought indemnity for remediation costs and other sums related to pollution cleanup at five of its manufacturing sites under several excess general liability policies. OneBeacon insured Olin under three excess umbrella
Continue reading...

Illinois Supreme Court Puts the Brakes on Named Driver Exclusion

The Illinois Supreme Court held in Thounsavath v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., 2018 IL 122558, that an insurer cannot rely on a named driver exclusion to deny underinsured motorist coverage to its insured because the exclusion is unenforceable under Illinois’ mandatory automobile insurance statutory scheme and the state’s public policy. State Farm provided automobile liability and uninsured motorist (UM)/underinsured motorist (UIM)coverage to Thounsavath, which contained a named driver exclusion stating no liability shall attach “while any motor vehicle
Continue reading...

It’s not “12 Corners” — Court Holds Answer does not Trigger Duty to Defend

It is a well-known insurance principle that the duty to defend is determined using the “Eight-Corners” method — comparing the four corners of the complaint to the four corners of the insurance policy. A federal court in Illinois recently maintained this principle and declined to extend coverage to an insured based allegations in the insured’s answer, limiting the analysis of the duty to defend only to the facts alleged in the complaint, and not the answer, unless “unusual circumstances” exist.
Continue reading...

Viking Pump’s Legacy: Virginia Court Holds “All Sums” Approach Applies to Excess “Quota Share” Layer Where Underlying Coverage was Exhausted

A federal judge in Virginia held the New York Court of Appeals decision in In re Viking Pump, Inc., 27 N.Y.3d 244 (N.Y. 2016) allowed for an insurer to apply an “all sums” allocation and seek the full limits of excess insurance policies — that formed part of a multi-year “quota share” layer — in a single year, without first establishing that the claims constituted a single loss or occurrence that is covered in whole or in part under another
Continue reading...

Insurer Obligated to Provide Coverage for DWI Accident Resulting from Fundraising Event

In Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company v. Central Terminal Restoration Corp., 2018 WL 992312 (2d Cir. 2018), the Second Circuit found coverage existed for a car accident which resulted from the overserving of alcohol to a patron at an event because it held that the ensuing consequences were unintentional. On April 1, 2013, Central Terminal Restoration Corp. (CTRC) held a fundraising event in association with Dyngus Day, a traditional post-Easter festival that attracts tens of thousands of Polish Americans to Buffalo,
Continue reading...

The ALI Set to Vote to Adopt the “Restatement of the Law of Liability Insurance”

The American Law Institute (ALI) is set to vote to approve its much anticipated “Restatement of the Law of Liability Insurance” Law at its annual meeting from May 21 to 23, 2018, in Washington, D.C. For almost 100 years, the ALI has published “Restatement of the Law” treatises on various legal topics which are meant to inform legal practitioners on general principles of common law, and courts will often look to these Restatements for guidance. In fact, according to ALI statistics, state
Continue reading...

NY’s Highest Court Holds “Unavailability Exception” Unavailable for Pro Rata Allocation

Policyholders must pick up the tab for pollution claims in years when insurance was unavailable for those risks, the New York Court of Appeals ruled on March 27, 2018. In the closely-watched case KeySpan Gas East Corp. v. Munich Reinsurance Am., Inc., the first-impression ruling decisively decided the applicability of the “unavailability” rule in policies that mandate pro rata allocation in the context of continuous environmental contamination and other “long-tail” claims implicating many policy periods. Under standard pro-rata allocation, the
Continue reading...