Sarah J. Delaney

All articles by Sarah J. Delaney

 

Insured Stuck Defending Itself Against Claims of False Advertising an Elastic Tape Product

In Cincinnati Insurance Company v. KT Health Holdings, LLC et al. (D. Mass. Mar. 27, 2017), a Massachusetts federal district court held that an insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify its insureds, finding that allegations by a putative class that the insureds falsely advertised their product did not trigger bodily injury coverage under a CGL policy. As background, the defendants, KT Health Holdings and KT Health (collectively “KT”), manufacture and sell KT Tape for sports and fitness activities.
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Massachusetts Ruling Costs Plaintiff More Than $4 Million in Bad-Faith Litigation Lawsuit: Post-Judgment Interest Not a Factor in Punitive Damages Calculations

In Anderson et al. v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh PA & Others, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court held that post-judgment interest should not be factored into a punitive damages calculation against an insurer when it was found to have acted willfully and egregiously by engaging in unfair trade practices and refusing to settle the underlying tort suit. In reversing the lower court’s grant of trebled post-judgment interest, the court left other parts of the verdicts undisturbed, ending
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Supreme Court of Texas Puts a Dent in Policyholders’ Demand for Discovery of Other Claims in Hail Storm MDL

On October 28, 2016, the Supreme Court of Texas squelched a trial court order granting a policyholders’ motion to compel that reached its bench by mandamus petition. The dispute arose out of multidistrict litigation (MDL) involving claims for property damage caused by the 2012 hail storms that tormented Hidalgo County, Texas. The policyholders sought compensatory and extra-contractual damages against several insurers for underpayment of insurance claims. A pretrial court appointed by the MDL panel granted the policyholders’ motion to compel
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Seventh Circuit: No Insurable Interest, No Problem (For the Beneficiary, That Is!)

The Seventh Circuit recently affirmed a district court decision upholding payment under a life insurance policy purchased by a securities intermediary. The decision first addressed the common law’s prohibition on wagering contracts, or stranger-originated life insurance, and the traditional remedy which invalidates any such policy of insurance. However, this case was subject to Wisconsin law, whose legislature places the risk on the insurer for issuing a policy to someone without an insurable interest by refusing to invalidate such contracts. Specifically,
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U.S. Court of Appeals Issues Major Ruling Against CFPB

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently issued a decision in PHH v. CFPB that fundamentally transforms the power of one of the newest and most powerful agencies in the federal government, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). First, the court held that the structure of the CFPB was unconstitutional and struck down a provision that only allows the president to dismiss the director of the CFPB for cause. After this decision, the director now
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Former FIFA Executive Entitled to Criminal Defense Costs in Bribery Case; D&O Insurers Required to Pay

Eduardo Li, one defendant of a widespread racketeering and fraud prosecution against FIFA and its members, brought this case seeking a declaration his insurers have to pay and advance his criminal defense costs regarding those prosecutions. The Eastern District of New York Court found that the insurers must immediately reimburse and advance legal costs for Li under a directors and officers liability policy. Eduardo Li and other members of FIFA are the subject of criminal actions for corruption related to
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Massachusetts’ Highest Court Rejects Targeted Tenders

Only three states have adopted the “targeted tender” rule. Massachusetts recently had the chance to join those ranks, but it firmly declined. The concept of “targeted tender” or “selective tender” allows a policyholder to single out one insurer among co-insurers and trigger only that insurer’s policy, leaving the insurer without entitlement to contribution from co-insurers. In Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania v. Great Northern Insurance Company, an employee reported his injury to the insured employer, which then notified
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GAO’s Update on ACA Enrollment Process: CMS Encouraged to Take Steps to Monitor Program Cost, Risk, and Performance

The issue of fraud is still alive and well with respect to the health care exchanges established by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently issued a new update with respect to fraud in the federal exchanges. In that report, the GAO recommended that the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) strengthen enrollment controls and manage Fraud Risk. The report notes that implementation of the new eligibility and enrollment provisions for the first year was
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You’re Barred. Again: Negligent Acts, Conditional Language, and the Assault/Battery Exclusion

A fatal shooting took place at a bar. The bar purchased an insurance policy, which contained an assault and battery exclusion, barring coverage for bodily injury or property damage arising out of “any actual, threatened or alleged assault or battery” and the “failure to any insured or anyone else for whom any insured is or could be held legally liable to prevent or suppress any assault or battery.” The bar and additional insured premises owner were sued for negligent security
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One at a Time! Anti-Stacking Provision Upheld

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals denied appellants’ attempts to classify the language of an anti-stacking provision ambiguous in Gohagen v. The Cincinnati Ins. Co., (8th Cir., January 6, 2016). The plaintiff was severely injured by a tree being removed by the policyholder.  He reached a settlement with the policyholder, which included the insurer’s payment of $1,000,000; that figure represented the per-occurrence limit under the commercial general liability policy (CGL). The policyholder also had a business owners package (BOP) with
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Insurer Entitled to Reimbursement of Defense Costs for Non-Covered Claims

In Chiquita Brands Int’l, Inc. v. Nat’l Union Fire Ins. Co., 2015-Ohio-5477 (Oh. Ct. App. Dec. 30, 2015), the Court of Appeals of Ohio held that an insurer was entitled to recover defense costs and prejudgment interest pursuant to restitution theory. Ultimately, however, the net effect of Chiquita Brands Int’l, Inc. is somewhat diminished by the Court of Appeals’ statement that its holding was narrow and limited to the particular posture and facts of the case, which while not exceeding
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Which Came First? Turns Out, It May Not Matter. Illinois Appeals Court Weighs in on Anticoncurrent-Causation Clause for the First Time

For the first time, an Illinois court addressed an anti-concurrent causation clause. In Bozek v. Erie Ins., 2015 IL App.(2d) 150155 (Dec. 17, 2015) , an Illinois appellate court held a homeowner’s insurance policy’s anti-concurrent causation clause precluded coverage because an excluded event, hydrostatic pressure, contributed to a single loss (the lifting of a pool out of the ground). The plaintiffs incurred damage to their in-ground swimming pool after a heavy rain storm. The large amount of rain saturated the
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A Supreme Lesson on Diligence and Equity: Court Bars Recovery of Equitable Lien Under ERISA Plan

The Supreme Court issued its decision in Montanile v. Board of Trustees of National Elevator Industry Health Benefit Plan , holding that the fiduciary could not enforce its equitable lien against general assets. The court reversed the Eleventh Circuit, finding that where a plan participant has obtained a settlement from a third party — but has dissipated the settlement on nontraceable items — the fiduciary cannot bring a suit under Section 502(a)(3) to attach the general assets of the participant
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Non-Party’s Claim of Employment Relationship with Plaintiff Creates Question of Fact in DJ Action

A complaint clearly and repeatedly alleges the plaintiff was the employee of the defendant, but for purposes of the employment practices exclusion, was she really? At this point, it’s unclear after her “real” employer claims her as its own in the declaratory judgment action. Bikram Choudhury founded the popular Bikram (or hot yoga) in the 1970s. A former student accused Bikram of raping her in 2010. As Bikram’s legal counsel was looking into that rape accusation, she alleges that Bikram
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Daughter Does Not Have to Pay for the Sins of Her Mother: Insurer Entitled to Restitution from Insureds but Appellate Court Remands Damage Award

The 2015 holiday season might be a bit tense for a mother-daughter team ordered to pay restitution to their insurer for fraud and misrepresentation. Secura Ins. v. Thomas, 2015 Mich. App. LEXIS 2230 (Mich. App. December 1, 2015). While restitution was owed for the wrongful acts, the court held joint and several liability did not apply to frauds in which a party (the daughter) was not directly involved. This case presents an example an insurer performing excellent due diligence in
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Employee’s Equitable Interest in Boss’s Life Insurance Policy Trumps Boss’s Ability to Designate Wife as Beneficiary

In Shuttle v. Ligor (Mass. App. Ct., Nov. 20, 2015) the Massachusetts Court of Appeals held an employer was equitably estopped from changing the beneficiary of his life insurance policy from his employee to his wife, but the wife (who received the policy proceeds) owed nothing to the employee. An employee of many years had been informed by her boss that she was designated as a beneficiary under his life insurance policy. The employee was told that her boss’s designation of
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Equity Trumps “Love.” And Designated Beneficiaries. With ERISA’s Blessing. Court Imposes Constructive Trust on Life Insurance Proceeds and Insurer Triumphs Through Interpleader

In McCarthy v. Estate of McCarthy, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153107 (SDNY, November 10, 2015), a federal judge imposed a constructive trust on the proceeds of a life insurance policy in favor of the decedent’s ex-wife and children over his girlfriend. Equity required the constructive trust due to the decedent’s breach of his divorce agreement, regardless of who was actually the designated beneficiary. Pursuant to the terms of a 2012 divorce settlement, the decedent agreed to a number of conditions
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Exceptionally Navigating Abstention: Northern District of Illinois Applies the Colorado River Doctrine to Stay Arbitration

An insurer and a policyholder entered into an agreement, or didn’t they? Either way, the Northern District of Illinois doesn’t have to decide because “exceptional circumstances” triggered the Colorado River abstention doctrine, allowing the court to stay the case asking it to determine whether the agreement existed. A policyholder and one of its insurers began having disputes about who had to provide coverage for certain claims. As a result of those disputes, the policyholder and the insurer allegedly entered into
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Attorney-Negotiated Medical Discounts Reduce Tort Victim’s Recovery

The Louisiana Supreme Court has issued the first ruling from a state’s highest court on the issue of whether a tort victim’s potential recovery in a lawsuit is diminished when her attorney negotiates medical discounts on her behalf. The court ruled that tort victims can only recover the lower rate for medical services they actually pay. The case, Hoffman v. 21st Century N Am. Ins. Co., No. 14-2279, 2015 La. LEXIS 1962 (La. Oct. 2, 2015), dealt with the collateral
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Sixth Circuit: SPD is Binding Plan Document, Subrogation Clause Enforceable

The central question in this appeal before the Sixth Circuit was whether the summary plan description (SPD) — the only document in the record that contained a subrogation provision — was a binding plan document with enforceable terms. In this case, Bd. of Trs. v. Moore, U.S. Ct. Apps., Sixth Cir., Aug. 25, 2015, there was a Trust Agreement that authorized the Board of Trustees to adopt a written welfare benefits plan, to administer the plan, and to act as plan fiduciary. Central
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Bad Faith in Louisiana: Insured’s Claim for Bad Faith Not Limited to Statutory Cause of Action

In a multi-layered decision, Century Surety Company v. Belvins, (United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, August 18, 2015), the Fifth Circuit found that a policyholder could assert non-statutory bad faith claims against an insurer under Louisiana law.  It also held that a district court could not sua sponte dismiss unchallenged counterclaims without notice to the parties, and affirmed that Brillhart v. Excess Ins. Co. of Am., 316 U.S. 491 (1942)’s broad abstention doctrine (applicable in declaratory judgment
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Accommodations for Contraception Coverage Exemptions Replace Subsidies As The ACA Story of the Week

In recent months, the main event in the challenges against the Affordable Care Act centered on the subsidies provisions in the ACA. The Supreme Court decided this matter in King v. Burwell. In July 2015, there were two additional key developments related to the provision requiring employers to provide contraception coverage. On July 14, 2015, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Little Sisters of the Poor Home v. Burwell held that the self-certifying procedure in place for religious not-for-profits
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Under Virginia Law, Despite the Separation of Insureds Provision, Insurer has No Duty to Defend Suit Alleging Insured is Liable Under Respondeat Superior for Intentional Acts of Agent

On July 10, 2015, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals held that an insurer had no duty to defend the insured university in a suit alleging that the insured participated in a kidnapping plot. The court found that the insurer had no duty to defend because the suit was based on the intentional acts of the insured’s employees. In this case, the plaintiff alleged that the insured participated in a plot to kidnap the student in order to remove the
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Timing is Everything: Beneficiary Change Made During Divorce Action in Violation of NY’s Automatic Orders Ineffective

Reliastar Life Ins. Co. of New York v. Cristando, N.Y. App. Div., 2d Dept., June 3, 2015 Under New York law, while the designation of an ex-spouse beneficiary will be subject to automatic revocation in most circumstances, that same change cannot be made during the pendency of the divorce proceeding. The New York Appellate Division affirmed a trial court’s decision, finding such that a wife’s decision to change the beneficiary of her life insurance policy while her divorce was pending violated
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Eleventh Circuit: Failure to Give Notice of Time Limit to File Action Does Not Render Contractual Limitations Period Unenforceable

In Wilson v. Standard Ins. Co. (U.S. Ct. Apps., 11th Cir.) the claimant filed her lawsuit claiming long term disability benefits thirty-four months after the three-year contractual limitations period. The claimant argued that equitable tolling should apply because the insurer’s denial letter did not give notice of the time limit and therefore was in violation of the ERISA regulations. The Eleventh Circuit found that the “claims procedure” regulation, 29 CFR 2560.503-1(g)(1)(iv), clearly required notice of the administrative review procedures and those
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Anti-Concurrent-Causes Clause Bars Coverage When One Cause is Excluded

In JAW The Pointe, L.L.C., v. Lexington Ins. Co., 2015 WL 1870054 (Tex. April 24, 2015), the Texas Supreme Court found an insurer did not violate the Texas Insurance Code and the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act by denying coverage where the damages in question were caused in part by flooding, a cause excluded by the policy. JAW The Pointe purchased an apartment complex in Galveston, Texas in 2007, only 14 months before Hurricane Ike struck. The complex sustained significant
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AD&D Policy Beneficiaries’ Recovery Limited To Death Benefits — No Recovery for Dismemberment Injuries Leading To Death

In Malbrough v. Kanawha Insurance Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 48394 (W.D. La. Apr. 9, 2015), the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana was asked to determine the benefit payable to the plaintiff beneficiaries under an Accidental Death and Dismemberment insurance policy issued by Kanawha. The court held in favor of the insurers, ruling that the beneficiaries were limited to death benefits only, and not to additional benefits relating to the loss of the decedent’s foot. Following
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Seventh Circuit: Federal Government Can Garnish Private Disability Insurance Payments for Restitution Order

U.S. v. France U.S. Ct. Apps., Seventh Cir., Apr. 7, 2015 The Seventh Circuit ruled that the federal government has the power to garnish monthly payments from a private disability insurance policy belonging to a dentist that had been ordered, as part of his guilty plea to mail fraud, to pay restitution to victims for a fraudulent billing scheme. Here, the dentist was ordered to pay $800,000 in restitution to the victims of his fraudulent billing scheme in 2002. However,
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Florida Court of Appeals Permits Post-Loss Assignment of Benefits to Third Party

In Accident Cleaners, Inc. v. Universal Insurance Co., 2015 SL 1609973 (Fla. Ct.App. April 10, 2015) the Florida Court of Appeals, Fifth District held the assignee of benefits under an insurance policy was not required to have an insurable interest in the insured property at the time of loss. The court further held that so long as the assignor had an insurable interest in the insured property at the time of the loss, such insurable interest is imputed to the
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No Coverage for Financial Firm that Invested Clients’ Money in Ponzi Scheme

A securities firm sought coverage under a professional liability policy for claims by customers that suffered losses on real estate investment vehicles. The Panel for the Second Appellate District in California found that the policyholder was not entitled to coverage because the “application exclusion” in the firm’s policy bars coverage for the claims asserted, as the policyholder did not disclose the facts of the claims against it to the insurer in its application. The claimants brought suit, asserting that the
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The Latest Insurance Law Decisions – Goldberg Segalla’s CaseWatch: Insurance is Now Available

Please click here for the latest edition of CaseWatch Insurance. CaseWatch: Insurance provides timely summaries of and access to insurance law decisions and legislation.  For ease of reference, we have organized cases by topic. If you would like to receive future editions of CaseWatch: Insurance directly by email, please contact Sarah Delaney at sdelaney@goldbergsegalla.com.  
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No Business Loss Coverage for Sandy Flooding

A Southern District Court judge ruled that an insurer was not required to pay lost business coverage after Superstorm Sandy due to a flood provision contained in the policy. In this case, a law firm sought coverage from its insurer when its lower Manhattan office was evacuated due to flooding from the Sandy Storm. The insured law firm sought coverage under the policy’s civil authority provision and moved for summary judgment while the insurer cross moved for summary judgment because
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Where There is Fire, There is Smoke

In Hobson v. Indian Harbor Insurance Co., No. 316714, 2015 WL 1069242 (Mich. Ct. App. Mar. 10, 2015), the appellate court in Michigan rejected the insurers’ interpretation of the pollution exclusion in the landlord’s commercial general liability (“CGL”) insurance policy to deny the tenants’ bodily injury claim. The dispute arose when the plaintiffs sustained bodily injuries from a fire that broke out in the apartment building where they resided. Subsequently, the plaintiffs sued the landlord and its insurers, alleging that
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Structural Damage Doesn’t Mean Any Damage to Structure

In Hegel v. First Liberty Insurance Corp., No. 14-10549, 2015 WL 821146 (11th Cir. Feb. 27, 2015), the Eleventh Circuit reversed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for the policyholder, finding that “structural damage” does not mean any “damage to the structure.” The coverage dispute arose when the insurer First Liberty Insurance Corp. (“First Liberty”) denied the policyholders’ claim for a “sinkhole loss” which their homeowner’s insurance policy defined as “structural damage to the building, including the foundation, caused
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Law Firm’s Policy Rescinded For Misrepresentation in Application

The Supreme Court of Illinois held that the insurer was entitled to rescind a law firm’s malpractice policy based on material misrepresentations in the firm’s renewal application. The main issue in this case was whether the policy could be rescinded despite one of the firm’s attorneys being unaware of the misrepresentation. The appellate court had ruled that, under the innocent insured doctrine, the insurer was required to maintain coverage for the innocent partner despite the misrepresentation on the application when
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Kmart Corporation v. Footstar, Inc.

U.S. App. LEXIS 1775 (7th Cir. February 4, 2015) Insurer’s Duty to Indemnify Limited to Insured’s Agreed Upon “Work” and Did Not Apply to Liability Arising from Actions of the Insured Outside Scope of “Work” and In Breach of the Agreement In Kmart Corporation v. Footstar, Inc., Nos. 14-1242, 14-1356, 14-1359, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 1775 (7th Cir. Feb. 4, 2015), the Seventh Circuit reversed the district court’s finding that Footstar, Inc. (“Footstar”) and its insurer Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance
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Abuse of Discretion Where Insurer Failed to Consider “Similar Income” Requirement

George v. Reliance Std. Life Ins. Co. 5th Cir., Jan. 15, 2015 In the appeal of an ERISA disability benefits denial, the Fifth Circuit found an abuse of discretion where the insurer failed to consider the “similar income” provision. The insurer had found in its investigation that the claimant was not totally disabled under the policy as there were sedentary jobs for which the insured was able to perform. What the court found lacking, was any discussion of whether the
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U.S. GAO Study Analyzes Market Share Among Health Care Enrollees

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) requires the GAO to study competition and market concentration in the health insurance market. This study examined the individual, small group, and large group health insurance markets prior to the implementation of key PPACA provisions that went into effect in 2014 and that could have an effect on competition and market concentration among health insurers. The study found that while several insurers participated in each state’s individual, small group, and large group
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Judge Throws Out Yacht Club’s Hurricane Sandy Suit: Insurer Must Be Allowed to Inspect “Damaged” Property

A District of New Jersey Federal Judge dismissed a yacht club’s case with prejudice and ordered the yacht club to show cause for why its counsel should not be sanctioned for filing a baseless claim after the yacht club refused to let the insurer inspect its property after making a claim. The Judge stated that the yacht club refused to let the insurer inspect its property, yet claimed $540,000 worth of wind damage to its buildings from Superstorm Sandy. After
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Fifth Circuit: Claimant Must Wait for Actual Claim Denial to File Suit

In an unpublished opinion, the Fifth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a class action suit that alleged the claim administrator, wrongfully denied payment of medical claims “immediately,” instead of waiting for the participant to fail to provide requested information. In this case, the plaintiff’s son was in an auto accident, and the administrator requested information regarding no-fault benefits before processing the medical claim. The self-funded plan at issue contained detailed provisions regarding Coordination of Benefits, primacy of coverage and information
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Accidental Death Benefits are Payable Drowning, Even if Seizure Involved, was Cause of Death

In Chanthavong v. Union Security Ins. Co., (11/04/2014), the deceased, Corey Carter, was found in April of 2012, having accidentally drowned in his bathtub. Carter held a group life insurance policy established by his employer through defendant insurer that was subject to the provisions off the Employment Retirement Income Security Act. Carter named his son D.D.C., minor-plaintiff, the beneficiary on the policy. The defendant paid the general life insurance policy in full, but denied the claim under the accidental death policy,
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SCOTUS Grants Cert on ACA Tax Subsidy Case

On Friday, November 7, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear King v. Burwell, one of the cases about who is eligible for the tax subsidies in the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  These subsidies are a critical part of the legislation as they are designed to help make health insurance affordable.  As we discussed in a prior post, at least two U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal have issued different interpretations on this language. In King v. Burwell, the 4th
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Cigna Has Continued its Battle for Coverage of ERISA Class Action

Cigna has continued its fight for coverage again urging the Pennsylvania Superior Court to overturn a decision that let its excess insurers off the hook over an ERISA class action brought by the company’s employees. The dispute centers on changes to the benefit plan, which U.S. District Judge Janet Arterton’s 2012 decision found had been fraudulently altered. Cigna argues that this finding does not qualify as a fact finding, and that the fraud exemption was inaccurately applied. Cigna’s argument has
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D.C. Court Agrees to Hear Halbig En Banc

On September 4, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit granted the U.S. Government’s petition to re-hear Halbig v. Burwell en banc which means that all active judges on the court will now hear the case. For a more detailed explanation of the general arguments in Halbig, click here.  However, in short, the question is whether the subsidies provided for by the Affordable Care Act for those who purchase health insurance through the exchanges apply to purchases
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Health Care Providers Ordered to Pay Insurer $8.4M for Billing Fraud

Three health care providers were forced to pay a judgment for defrauding an insurance company of millions of dollars. A Texas Federal Judge found that the defendant health care providers were wrongfully posing as emergency rooms in order to bill the insurance company at higher rates, in violation of Texas law. The judge stated that a hospital sold the right to use its license-derived billing codes to various clinics in exchange for 15 percent of each of the clinics’ bills.
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Obama Administration Files Proposed Rules on ACA Preventative Services Coverage–Seeks Input on Logistics

The Obama Administration has filed an Interim Final Rule seeking input on the logistics of obtaining an accommodation and in defining eligible organizations with respect to coverage for preventative services under the ACA. The new interim final regulations establish another option for an eligible organization to avail itself of the accommodation. Under the IFR, an eligible organization may notify the Department of HHS in writing of its religious objection to contraception coverage. HHS will then notify the insurer for an
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Courts Split on ACA Health Insurance Subsidies: Highlights Differences in Statutory Interpretation

On July 22, 2014, two U.S. Courts of Appeals highlighted both the science and the art of statutory construction and interpretation — and came to very different conclusions. These courts were asked to consider an IRS rule (26 C.F.R. § 1.36B-2(a)(1)) associated with a section of the Affordable Care Act that provides tax credits (subsidies) for those who purchase health insurance under the exchanges. The central issue was whether the relevant provision of the ACA (26 U.S.C. 36B(c)(2)(A)(i)) (the provision),
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The Latest Insurance Law Decisions – Goldberg Segalla’s CaseWatch: Insurance is Now Available

Please click here for the latest edition of CaseWatch Insurance. CaseWatch: Insurance provides timely summaries of and access to insurance law decisions and legislation.  For ease of reference, we have organized cases by topic. If you would like to receive future editions of CaseWatch: Insurance directly by email, please contact Sarah Delaney at sdelaney@goldbergsegalla.com.
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Hobby Lobby Precedent Already Undermined, Says Justice Sotomayor

Thursday, July 3, the United States Supreme Court granted an application for injunction pending appeal by Wheaton College, overriding its requirements for exemption from the contraceptive mandate under the Affordable Care Act, while calling into question the extent of the court’s holding in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, Inc.  In her dissent, Justice Sotomayor writes that this order “evinces disregard for even the newest of this Court’s precedents and undermines confidence in this institution.” Wheaton v. Burwell, 573 U.S. ____ (2014). 
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Second Circuit: ERISA Claims Raise Reasonable Possibility of Negligence, Trigger Duty to Defend Under EBL Coverage

The plaintiff’s complaint in the underlying action alleged that she had been sexually harassed by a senior executive of the insured and that, when she confronted him about his conduct, she had been wrongfully terminated and coerced into accepting an independent contractor position that disqualified her from receiving certain employee benefits. The insured tendered the defense of the underlying action to the CGL carrier who disclaimed coverage. The underlying action was subsequently settled and the insured then filed a declaratory judgment
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