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  • Appraisal May Be a Viable Option for Policyholders When Damages Calculations Are Contested
    07/20/2020

    Even if an insurance company attempts to deny its coverage obligations, there are still processes that a policyholder can explore, short of litigation, that could resolve a coverage dispute. Appraisal is an alternative dispute resolution process designed to efficiently resolve measurement disputes between policyholders and their insurers. Appraisal can streamline a coverage lawsuit and narrow the disputed issues—it may even limit the need for expert reports and depositions. There is a strong public policy favoring appraisals throughout the country, not only because they may provide a less expensive alternative to litigation, but also because appraisal rulings are enforceable and strictly applied in court. Some states even require that form standard insurance policies include an appraisal clause requiring either party to, on demand, submit a dispute over the amount of a loss to an appraisal panel. (See Virginia Code § 38.2-2105; Cal. Ins. Code § 2071; McKinney’s Ins. Law§ 3404; N.J.S.A. § 17:36-5.20.) That panel typically consists of two appraisers, who select an umpire.

  • COVID-19: Pandemic Risk Insurance Act Can Have a Positive Impact on American Sports
    07/14/2020 | Sports Business Journal

    In the latest installment of Sports Business Daily, Pillsbury Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner Richard Giller and Public Policy partner Brian Finch explored the new Pandemic Risk Insurance Act (PRIA) and its positive effects on sports in the U.S.

  • Insuring Patrick Mahomes’s Massive Contract
    07/13/2020 | Sportico

    The 10-year contract extension Patrick Mahomes signed with the Kansas City Chiefs will make him among the richest athletes of the modern era. The deal is reportedly worth up to $503 million and contains a signing bonus of $63 million. Another feature is an injury guarantee that rises to $141 million by 2022, Sportico reported.

  • Richard Giller Featured in the July 2020 Edition of College Athletics and the Law
    07/10/2020

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner, Richard Giller was quoted in the July 2020 issue of College Athletics and the Law on the legal and cultural impacts of COVID-19 on college sports. The quotes we’re stemmed from Giller’s May 27 webinar with the LEAD1 Association entitled 'Survive and Advance: Understanding the Legal and Cultural Impacts of COVID-19 on College Sports.’

  • Richard Giller Quoted in Sportico’s Inaugural Issue on Insurance Policies, College Sports and the Pandemic
    07/09/2020 | Sportico

    As COVID-19 continues, an inevitable legal battle awaits the sports industry.

    Richard Giller, an Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner at Pillsbury in Los Angeles, told Sportico that until late January, sports policyholders could pay extra to extend their policies to explicitly cover communicable disease losses. Some sports organizations, including the NCAA, the Big East and Wimbledon, did so. Many did not.

  • Return to Play for U.S. College Sports — Legal Risks, Liability Waivers and Best Practices
    07/07/2020 | LawinSport

    This piece was written for and first published by LawInSport. The original is available to view here.

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner, Richard Giller, explores the potential legal risks involved with return to play for college sports in the U.S. amid the COVID-19 pandemic 

  • Tamara Bruno Comments on 2020 Rulings and Cases in Law360
    07/07/2020 | Law360

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery and Advisory partner Tamara Bruno commented on the Montrose v. Superior Court ruling in an interview with Law360, explaining that the California high court’s decision was vital because some insurers have invoked horizontal exhaustion as a means of avoiding liability altogether for environmental pollution, asbestos personal injury and other long-tail claims.

  • Avoiding a Cyber Mouse Trap: Three Common Cyber Insurance Pitfalls
    07/02/2020

    Almost four months have passed since the World Health Organization declared COVID‑19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. Continued social distancing and other precautionary measures have driven many organizations to expand work-from-home protocols for the foreseeable future or even permanently—in turn prompting many organizations to review their cyber insurance policies in addition to the rest of their insurance portfolios. While cyber risk policies are not widely standardized, there are several common traps that are found in many cyber risk policies, and early awareness of them can be the difference between a covered claim and a hard-fought coverage battle. While these traps are not specific to COVID-19 concerns, they may become increasingly important as organizational cyber exposures increase. Three of the more salient pitfalls are discussed in this post.

  • Buyer Beware: Search for Litigation Time Bombs in Your Policies
    06/29/2020

    Insurance policies are legal documents. In the event of a dispute, their scope and meaning will be submitted to a court or arbitrator for interpretation. Most brokers are not attorneys. Most risk managers are not attorneys. And few companies seek counsel to review policies before a claim arises. But underwriters, assisted by their counsel, increasingly are including litigation-focused provisions in their policies. Although these provisions often appear innocuous to readers unfamiliar with insurance litigation issues, they are like time bombs designed to explode in the event of a contested, litigated claim.

  • Policyholders Caught in a Reservation of Rights Catch-22 May Still Be Able to Get Out of the Bind
    06/17/2020

    As coverage counsel, we witness firsthand the precarious positions policyholders are often left in due to the actions (or inactions) of their insurance carriers. A prime example of such a catch-22 scenario is when an insurer refuses to consent to a settlement offer while defending under a reservation of rights.

  • Cannabis, Commercial Insurance and Coverage
    06/16/2020

    In “Potential Insurance Coverage for Looted Cannabis Dispensaries in California and Beyond,” our colleague Benjamin D. Tievsky explains how affected businesses can look to their commercial property policies for potential property damage and business interruption coverage, and discusses coverage issues insurers may attempt to raise.

  • Pillsbury Ranked in 2020 Legal 500 U.S. Guide as a Leading Firm in 27 Practice Areas
    06/15/2020

    In its 2020 guide, The Legal 500 U.S. ranked Pillsbury as a leader in 27 practices areas nationwide, spanning the firm’s litigation, regulatory and transactional practices and industries.

  • Potential Insurance Coverage for Looted Cannabis Dispensaries in California and Beyond
    06/15/2020 | Law.com

    Despite the historic difficulties faced by legal cannabis businesses in obtaining insurance—due to, among other factors, the reticence of insurers to underwrite the risk, and the industry’s lack of access to credit and other financial institutions—the situation has improved in recent years.

    During the widespread unrest in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, looters appear to have specifically targeted cannabis dispensaries for theft and vandalism. It has been reported that 43 businesses in California and Oregon were essentially destroyed, as well as dispensaries in Boston and Chicago that had only recently opened. The Bay Area was particularly hard-hit, with industry sources reporting that nearly every pot retailer in Oakland was targeted, along with most dispensaries in San Francisco and Berkeley. Many of these businesses were already suffering from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic — and may not have qualified for federal aid due to the federal illegality of marijuana — and they may now be teetering on the edge of financial ruin as a result of the recent wave of property damage, theft of inventory and cash, and further business interruption.

  • Insurance Coverage for Forced Labor Liability
    06/12/2020

    Times of crisis can bring out the best in people. Unfortunately, times like this can also be an opportunity for exploitation of inexpensive, and potentially forced, labor. As America reopens its economy, it is likely that we will begin to see a surge in many industries. The resulting demand for labor, coupled with unprecedented unemployment and related desperation not only in America, but worldwide, could lead unscrupulous individuals and companies to exploit American and foreign workers. We saw this with previous disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina, where foreign laborers were exploited in the rebuilding process with false promises of citizenship. Now, to be clear, exploitation occurs even during times of economic prosperity; however, it can be even more pronounced and egregious when people must deal with uncertainties and hardships never before experienced in their lifetimes.

  • Liability and Lawsuits: What to Know in The COVID-19 Era
    06/12/2020

    Pillsbury’s Richard Giller Featured in College Sports Podcast

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery and Advisory partner, Richard Giller, was featured on the June 10, 2020 edition of the Trustees and Presidents — Opportunities and Challenges with Intercollegiate Athletics Podcast, discussing “Liability and Lawsuits: What to Know in the COVID-19 Era.”

  • The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and D&O Coverage
    06/12/2020

    The coming months will inevitably bring new charges brought by the DOJ against borrowers for false statements made in PPP loan applications. In “Implications of PPP Certifications for D&O Coverage,” Peter Gillon explains why, before signing a PPP certification, you should check your D&O coverage.

  • COVID-19 May Complicate Civil Unrest Interruption Claims
    06/10/2020 | Business Insurance

    Legal experts say, while commercial property insurance policies generally provide coverage for physical damage and business interruption losses arising from civil unrest, COVID-19 losses will complicate the claims process for some businesses, Business Insurance reported.

  • Pillsbury’s Richard Giller Featured in TSN Radio on Sports League Cancellations and Insurance Coverage
    06/05/2020

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery and Advisory partner, Richard Giller, was featured on an episode in The Sports Network’s Vancouver radio broadcast where he discusses questions sport leagues will have around the COVID-19 stoppage.

  • Insurance Coverage Claims for Theft, Vandalism and Curfews
    06/02/2020

    Many U.S. businesses face income losses from theft, vandalism and resulting curfew orders, which have affected numerous cities in recent days.

  • Insuring a Newly Remote Workforce Post-COVID-19: Coverage Considerations Under Cyber and Other Commercial Insurance Policies
    06/02/2020

    In response to the uncertainties presented by COVID-19, many companies have shifted employees to remote work on a temporary basis. State and local law in locations across the country further required remote work for many companies. A few months into the pandemic, indications are that some of these companies are considering or already implementing a transition to permanent remote work for most or all of their employees. Such a change to long-term remote work impacts a company’s risk exposures in a variety of areas and in ways that affect many of the company’s insurance programs. Any company considering permitting or requiring its employees to work remotely as a long-term strategy should have its insurance policies reviewed carefully by experienced coverage counsel to identify potential gaps or coverage issues and recommend changes in policy terms to align the company’s coverage with the different risks of remote operations. To date, commercial policies generally have been written based on the premise that the policyholder’s employees mostly work in company offices; in a remote workforce world, many policy terms will no longer match that risk profile. While companies’ insurance policies and risks differ, there are some common issues that may arise under several types of commercial insurance policies in connection with a remote workforce.

  • A Primer on Bringing First-Party Insurance Claims
    05/29/2020

    The profound impact of COVID-19 leading businesses to file first-party insurance claims is now well known. Further, insurance companies are systematically pushing back on potential coverage for COVID-19, with some issuing blanket coverage denials without investigation. In other words, this is not an ordinary claims environment. Against this backdrop, many policyholders are facing what may be their first significant insurance claim. This primer will familiarize such policyholders with the initial steps of the first-party insurance claims process. Whether a potential claim is related to COVID-19 or not, understanding the claims process is the best first step towards avoiding pitfalls and maximizing chances of recovery.

  • Implications of PPP Certifications for D&O Coverage
    05/18/2020

    The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a key feature of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), was enacted to provide forgivable loans to certain small business and self-employed individuals demonstrating urgent financial need in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. (See H.R. 748 § 1102.) Loan recipients must certify their compliance with the terms and conditions of the loan, and violations expose them to a wide array of potential civil and criminal penalties, forfeiture, and other liabilities. If you or your company have already obtained, or are considering applying for a PPP loan, it is highly advisable for you to carefully review your D&O Liability Insurance Policy, as coverages for defense or ultimate liability vary significantly.

  • COVID-19: Plaintiffs Hope to Consolidate Restaurant Suits Over Coverage
    05/05/2020 | Daily Journal

    Insurers have consistently rejected claims filed by restaurants seeking business interruption coverage.

    A breach of contract complaint was filed in San Francisco County Superior Court for two restaurants that were denied coverage by insurers claiming a “virus exclusion” — one of many lawsuits filed by restaurants against their insurers in state and federal court that are adopting different arguments depending on the language of the insurance policies.

  • As Insurers Continue to Deny COVID-19 Claims, Businesses Fight Back
    04/29/2020 | San Francisco Chronicle

    Most insurance companies are telling owners that business interruption policies do not cover shutdowns due to coronavirus. Some businesses have pushed back, filing lawsuits to bring the issue before the courts, the Chronicle reports.

  • Pillsbury Gears Up for Coronavirus Insurance Fights
    04/14/2020 | Bloomberg Law

    Bloomberg Law reports that law firms such as Pillsbury are poised to benefit the most from an expected wave of insurance coverage lawsuits triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Many Commercial Property Insurance Policies Provide Coverage for COVID-19 Exposures
    04/14/2020

    The insurance industry’s generic arguments that there is no coverage for the COVID-19 pandemic should not be accepted at face value, as coverage may be available depending on specific policy terms and individualized facts.

    The insurance industry responded to the emergency of the COVID-19 pandemic with preemptive press statements that property insurance policies would provide no coverage—even before policyholders submitted any claims. Given this preliminary knee-jerk reaction, it is unsurprising that the first claims are being denied quickly, and without so much as a pretense of an investigation. In fact, the situation does not lend itself to generic denials. Commercial property policies vary in their terms, definitions and structure, and often include specialized or “manuscripted” provisions. The underlying situation is also unusually fluid. Policyholders should examine their policies carefully in light of their circumstances, and should insist on coverage where appropriate.

  • Insurers May Double Down On COVID-19 Claims Denials
    04/13/2020 | The San Francisco Chronicle

    Some small businesses are grappling with the harsh reality that they may be ineligible for business interruption insurance despite a near-total shutdown during the coronavirus pandemic, The San Francisco Chronicle reported.

  • Don’t Overlook the Next COVID-19 Insurance Battleground: Liability Coverage
    04/09/2020

    We have written much about business interruption coverage for losses arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, and expect that those losses will continue to dominate the insurance landscape for the foreseeable future.

    But, in recent weeks, another trend has emerged that will also significantly impact businesses: third-party lawsuits related to COVID-19 alleging causes of action ranging widely from negligence to wrongful death to false advertising to breach of contract to securities violations. In much the same way that businesses should evaluate coverage for lost profits, so, too, should those that face claims and lawsuits be prepared to seek insurance coverage for their defense and indemnity costs.

  • Richard Giller Quoted on Fox News Regarding COVID-19 Insurance Claims
    04/07/2020 | Fox News

    According to Fox News, many company policy holders are claiming that insurance companies are declining to pay for service disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Richard Giller, Pillsbury Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner, was quoted on the topic.

  • Pillsbury Industry Insights: Hotels & Hospitality
    04/07/2020

    Our Industry Insights webinar series is designed to help clients spot issues, mitigate risk and navigate challenges specific to their industry

  • COVID-19: Understanding Business Interruption Insurance and Wide-Impact Catastrophes
    04/06/2020

    Policyholders can expect insurers to put forth strong objections to many of their claims in an effort to reduce the liability exposure.

    Due to the spread of COVID-19, companies are facing unique challenges to their businesses, including supply chain interruptions, employee and customer safety concerns and government regulations, restrictions and shutdowns. Wide-impact catastrophes like this pandemic will cause tremendous and long-lasting economic damages. And while policyholders have procured insurance to protect themselves from such catastrophic events, business interruption claims are frequently the most difficult and hotly contested of insurance claims. Wide-impact catastrophes often heighten those challenges, given in part to the complexities of measuring business interruption claims. One common dispute is whether the measurement of business interruption should account for the post-loss economic conditions of the impacted area.

  • The Insurance Industry Should Have Been Better Prepared to Deal with COVID-19 Losses
    04/03/2020

    Over the past several weeks, news reports and their accompanying headlines have signaled what could be a pitched battle between policyholders and insurance companies over coverage for COVID-19 losses. One article noted that “insurance companies are facing political pressure to pay what could be a crippling sum of coronavirus-related claims—even though many of them say their policies don’t cover pandemics.” The headline of that article declared: “Insurers scramble to avoid 9/11-style coronavirus backlash.” Another piece described how the insurance industry had flatly rejected pressure from federal lawmakers “to pay out on business interruption claims from small businesses shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.” Insurance companies are asking their governments to provide subsidies to cover the losses. Against this backdrop, it is little wonder that lawmakers in Ohio, Massachusetts, and New Jersey have proposed legislation that would retroactively expand business interruption policies to cover losses due to the coronavirus outbreak.

  • Are Denials of Coverage and Belated Defense Payments a Breach of the Duty to Defend? In Wisconsin—Not Necessarily.
    03/25/2020

    When an insurer pursues a judicial determination on its duty to defend and agrees to defend its insured retroactively only five months after its insured initially requested a defense, has it breached its duty to defend? In most jurisdictions, the answer would be “yes.” In California, for example, an insurer must afford an immediate and entire defense in response to a tendered claim that is potentially covered under the Buss doctrine; belated, after-the-fact payments cannot cure that breach. But under the rule of a new Wisconsin decision, however, the same insurer would not have breached its duty to defend.

  • COVID-19: Business Interruption & Insurance Coverage
    03/19/2020

    Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner David Klein discusses the business interruption risks being felt by companies around the world and how to approach insurance coverage needs to mitigate those risks.

  • COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Business Implications & Legal Triage Presentation
    03/19/2020

    Pillsbury’s COVID-19 (Coronavirus) response team presents an up-to-the-minute discussion of the most pressing business and legal considerations in the wake of the global outbreak.

  • Sports360 Podcast Features Richard Giller On Cancellation Insurance in Wake of COVID-19
    03/17/2020

    Pillsbury Insurance Recovery & Advisory partner Richard Giller was interviewed by former Associate General Counsel for the Major League Baseball Players Association, Jeff Fannell, about event cancellation insurance in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. Giller discusses the basics of event cancellation insurance and what affected entities should do now to effectively assess and file coverage claims.

  • Insuring Against the Business Risks of Coronavirus
    03/17/2020

    Now is the time to take inventory of risks to your operations, supply chain, liability profile and personnel, and ensure you understand the coverage available to meet those exposures, before an outbreak impacts your business.

    The coronavirus pandemic is savaging the global economy, resulting in widespread business closures, near-universal event cancellations, remote officing, the cancellation of orders and slowing of deliveries, and a general disruption of supply chains. News reports indicate that the impacts are already being felt in virtually all industries. Travel, transportation, hospitality, education, health care, entertainment, and event planning are especially hard-hit, but most manufacturing and service activities are being disrupted. In recent years, the insurance industry has cut back on coverage available for pandemic diseases, introducing new or broadened exclusions and applying strict sublimits to contain insurer exposure. Nonetheless, pockets of coverage continue to exist. It is important to make an assessment now of your own business’s vulnerabilities and of the insurance you may have to address future losses.

  • David Klein Reviews Upcoming Coronavirus Insurance Battlegrounds
    03/13/2020 | Law360

    Property and liability insurers are bracing for an uptick in claims across virtually every line of coverage due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, as companies lose money by shutting down large-scale events and businesses face supply chain troubles, according to an article by Law360 on the types of coverage ripe for disputes.

  • Peter Gillon Discusses Coronavirus D&O Liability Risks
    03/12/2020 | Business Insurance

    Business Insurance reported that businesses should brace themselves for a likely flood of shareholder suits related to the new coronavirus outbreak. Although the success of any litigation may depend on companies’ willingness to fully disclose directors and officers’ liability-related risks now, experts said.

  • The Coronavirus and Event Cancellation Insurance Coverage
    03/12/2020

    Event cancellation insurance policies might well cover the significant financial losses that will result if an entertainment or sporting event is cancelled due to the coronavirus.

    On March 4, 2020, Los Angeles Dodgers President Stan Kasten acknowledged that, under certain circumstances, the Dodgers could “wind up either canceling games or holding games without spectators” because of the coronavirus. This announcement came on the heels of the National Basketball Association’s recommendations to its players that they should utilize fist-bumps over high-fives with fans and cautioning players not to take items to autograph from fans such as balls, jerseys and pens. Despite these precautions, two NBA players have tested positive for the virus and the league has suspended the remainder of the season, effective March 11, 2020, until further notice. Similar suggestions have already been implemented by the English Premier League, which has banned all handshakes before its soccer matches. The National College Players Association has also suggested to the NCAA that it should seriously consider holding March Madness games in empty arenas.

  • Coronavirus Update – Are You Covered?
    03/06/2020

    In January, we were among the first to post on the insurance implications of coronavirus. Since then, the epidemic has landed on our shores, dragged down the stock market, and become a political football. It has affected supply chains originating in China, with significant results for companies like Apple. And it threatens business continuity in the U.S. It is important to remember that the threat to the economic cycle does not originate from financial forces like a tightening of credit, but in nuts-and-bolts workings of the manufacturing and service economy, where both bottlenecks in supply and a pullback in demand threaten markets. Some of these losses are insurable. This post reviews recent coverage developments and notes practical coverage considerations that companies might overlook.

  • COVID-19 Insurance Checklist
    03/04/2020

    1. Make an inventory of risk pathways that could affect your business.
    • Identify essential supply chains, raw materials or parts providers and service providers to assess impact of potential disruptions.
    • Identify potential sources of liability if your business were impacted by COVID-19.
    • Identify other constituencies that might be affected by disruption to your business and risks associated with such disruption.

  • Do Putative Class Members’ Claims Trigger the Duty to Defend?
    02/18/2020

    Must an insurer consider the possibility that putative class members (i.e., potential class members not named in the complaint) other than the proposed class representatives (i.e., the plaintiffs named in the complaint to represent the proposed class) have claims within the proscribed policy period in determining whether its duty to defend has been triggered? Many insurers answer “no,” arguing putative class members’ claims—many of which would otherwise be barred by the applicable statute of limitations—are too speculative to trigger coverage. But courts across the country have disagreed, repeatedly answering the question in the affirmative. Last year, the Northern District of Indiana was the latest court to decide this issue in favor of policyholders.

  • Cyber Coverage by any Other Name Can Smell as Sweet: Maryland Court Rules Traditional Property Policy Covers Loss of Data and Impaired Computer Equipment After Ransomware Attack.
    02/10/2020

    Cyberattacks are an increasingly frequent and costly risk faced by almost every business today. While the availability and scope of cyber-specific insurance has developed exponentially over the past few years, it is important to remember that more traditional policies (such as general liability and first-party property insurance) can still be a source for coverage in connection with cyber incidents, as a recent court decision demonstrates.

  • A Practical Guide to Securing IP Insurance
    02/03/2020

    There has been tremendous recent growth in the range of specialized insurance policies offered to protect against intellectual property (IP) claims. “Traditional” policies may cover a given IP claim, but specific IP policies are growing in popularity as policyholders with IP-related risks look to bolster that aspect of their coverage portfolio. Because specialized IP policies are less common, less standardized, and less tested in courts, it is important that policyholders be knowledgeable about the market for IP coverage, including the types of coverages and specific policy wordings being offered. Here are a few practical tips to consider when securing such policies.

  • Getting Ahead of the Coronavirus Epidemic: What It Means for Insuring Your Business
    01/29/2020

    There has been a drumbeat of news reports about Wuhan, China, a city more populous than any in the United States, which is in effective lock-down because of the coronavirus. Foreign nationals are being evacuated, travel has been restricted, and business is at a standstill. At a time like this, preserving public health is the highest priority. But businesses, both local and global, are also affected by shut-down orders, disruptions to their supply chains, mass sick days, and loss of business. Many, especially providers of hospitality or health care, may face elevated liability risks for exposing others to a contagion. It is important to remember that insurance may be available to meet these risks.

  • International Pressure Raises Cybersecurity Threats
    01/23/2020

    Recent headlines have raised significant concerns about the possibility of cyberattacks on U.S. businesses as a result of the heightened tensions with Iran. The Department of Homeland Security, through its Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), has published alerts and guidance recommending heightened awareness and vigilance. Industry-specific warnings have been issued to regulated entities by other agencies; for instance, advisories concerning threats to the financial system and banks have recently been sent by the Federal Reserve and the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS).

  • What Should a Policyholder Do to Transfer Risk of Loss for Sexual Abuse Claims?
    12/30/2019

    Sexual abuse litigation is increasingly common, and an unfortunate wave of new lawsuits is coming. In her recent alert, Pillsbury’s Joan Cotkin reviews how the insurance industry has responded to these risks with new liability insurance products designed to address such claims, what coverage defenses insurers are likely to assert, and how you can anticipate and respond to them to secure the benefit of your coverage.

  • How Far Does Your Sexual Abuse Liability Coverage Extend?
    12/12/2019

    If faced with continuous injury claims based on past acts of sexual abuse, will an insured’s general liability policies with sexual abuse coverage defend?

    In recent years, there has been an unfortunate trend of new lawsuits claiming alleged sexual abuse, filed against various institutions or organizations—some religious, some secular—all across the country. A number of states have passed laws relaxing statutes of limitations, so that alleged victims of sexual abuse can bring such claims even if they relate to events which happened decades earlier, when the claimants were vulnerable children. How has the insurance industry responded to these liability claims?

  • A Recent “Event” in Wisconsin: Appellate Court Rules That a Commonly Used London Market “Occurrence” Definition Is Ambiguous
    12/09/2019

    In recent years, Wisconsin generally has been a pro-policyholder jurisdiction when it comes to long-tail environmental coverage cases. That trend continues with a decision by a Wisconsin appellate court in a case involving coverage for environmental cleanup costs at a former manufactured gas plant site. In Superior Water, Light & Power Co. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s, London Subscribing to Policy Nos. K22700, CX2900, and CX2901, the court reversed a lower court and held that there may be coverage under historic policies if there was damage to groundwater during the policy period, notwithstanding that site operations had ceased years earlier. This is an important decision, as the same historic London Market “occurrence” definition was used in many policies issued to other policyholders by London Market Insurers during the same time frame.

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