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Just-In: First Covid-19 Coverage Decision Issued

Posted by Randy Maniloff on Oct 3rd 2020

Just-In: First Covid-19 Coverage Decision Issued
There are hundreds of declaratory judgment actions, pending from sea to shining sea, addressing coverage for business interruption losses caused by the coronavirus.  With so many actions floating around, we were due for the first decision soon. It has arrived. Yesterday, Michigan Circuit Court Judge Joyce Draganchuk (Ingham County) granted the insurer's motion for summary disposition in Gavrilides Management Company vs. Michigan Insurance Company.  At issue was coverage
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California Supreme Court Unanimously Rules Intentional Tortfeasors Not be Afforded Apportionment of Fault in Multi-Defendant Lawsuits

Posted by Nicholas Myers on Aug 27th 2020

California Supreme Court Unanimously Rules Intentional Tortfeasors Not be Afforded Apportionment of Fault in Multi-Defendant Lawsuits
InBB v. County of Los Angeles, the California Supreme Court held that Civil Code Section 1431.2 (a), does not authorize a reduction in the liability of intentional tortfeasors for noneconomic damages based on the extent to which the other actors contributed to the injuries in question. [i] Justice Chin authored the opinion of the Court with a focus on the statutory interpretation while Justice Liu filed a concurring opinion, focusing on the inefficiency of the Legislature’s attempt to
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Appeals Court Rules that Vertical and Not Horizontal Exhaustion Applies to Primary and First-Layer Excess Insurance

Posted by Christopher Kendrick- Haight on Jul 24th 2020

Appeals Court Rules that Vertical and Not Horizontal Exhaustion Applies to Primary and First-Layer Excess Insurance
In Santa Fe Braun v. Ins. Co. of North America (No. A151428, filed 7/13/20), a California appeals court relied on Montrose Chemical Corp. of California v. Superior Court (2020) 9 Cal.5th 215 (Montrose III), to hold that absent express policy wording to the contrary, horizontal exhaustion of all primary insurance is not required in order to trigger first-layer excess coverage. Beginning in 1992, Braun was sued for asbestos injuries from refineries it constructed and maintained. B
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Subcontractors Found Liable to Reimburse Insurer Defense Costs in Equitable Subrogation Action

Posted by Christopher Kendrick- Haight on Jun 16th 2020

Subcontractors Found Liable to Reimburse Insurer Defense Costs in Equitable Subrogation Action
In Pulte Home Corp. v. CBR Electric, Inc. (No. E068353, filed 6/10/20), a California appeals court reversed the denial of an equitable subrogation claim for reimbursement of defense costs from contractually obligated subcontractors to a defending insurer, finding that all of the elements for equitable subrogation were met, and the equities tipped in favor of the insurer. After defending the general contractor, Pulte, in two construction defect actions as an additional insured on a su
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Genuine Dispute Summary Judgment Reversed for Abuse of Discretion and Trial of Fact Questions About Expert Opinions

Posted by Christopher Kendrick- Haight on Jun 10th 2020

Genuine Dispute Summary Judgment Reversed for Abuse of Discretion and Trial of Fact Questions About Expert Opinions
In Fadeeff v. State Farm General Ins. Co. (No. A155691, filed 5/22/20 ord. pub. 6/8/20), a California appeals court held that triable issues of fact and the trial court’s failure to address a request for a continuance precluded summary judgment for an insurer under the genuine dispute doctrine. In Fadeeff, the policyholders made a claim to State Farm for smoke damage to their home from the 2015 Valley Fire in Hidden Valley Lake, California. With State Farm’s approval, the insure
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