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A Ray of Hope to Policyholders: Coronavirus Can Amount to “Physical Loss,” Triggering Business Interruption Coverage

Despite some early rulings across the country that were adverse to policyholders, a recent ruling from a federal judge in Kansas City could be the first of many upcoming rulings in support of the business interruption policyholders’ claims against their insurers related to COVID-19. In Studio 417 Inc. et al v. The Cincinnati Insurance Co.,…
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The Houston Rockets Among Many Businesses Seeking Insurance Coverage Due to Coronavirus Closure

The Houston Rockets might be back at it in a big way with James Harden’s 49 points against the Dallas Mavericks, but the organization and the operators of the Toyota Center are embarking on a new challenge—fighting for business interruption coverage  related to COVID-19 shutdowns.  The new complaint filed on July 15, 2020, in Rhode…
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PA Federal Court Judge Punts on Ultimate Issue of Business Interruption Insurance Coverage for COVID-Related Losses Until Consideration of Class Certification

COVID-19 business interruption insurance litigation is certainly heating up.  On July 14, 2020, a Pennsylvania federal judge declined a summary judgment motion filed by the insured, Windber Hospital, against Travelers Property Casualty Co. of America (“Travelers”), the insurer (see Winber Hospital, et al. v. Travelers Property Casualty Co. of America, case number 3:20-cv-00080, in the…
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Two More Wins for the Policyholder: The Texas Supreme Court Twice More Finds Extra-Contractual Claims Survive Payment of Appraisal Award

The Texas Supreme Court is on a roll for policyholders!  We recently reported on the Barbara decision where the Texas Supreme Court upheld extra-contractual claims of insureds even after an appraisal award was paid by the insurer (read more about it on our previous article here) and three cases that followed  (you can learn about those…
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PA Plaintiff Dismisses BI COVID Class against Eerie Insurance Exchange

The world of COVID-related business interruption litigation changes rapidly, particularly with regard to class pleadings.  A Pennsylvania proposed class action filed against an Erie Insurance Exchange seeking coverage related to COVID-19 was voluntarily dismissed by the restaurant plaintiff, Sieb’s Pub. The plaintiff alleged it suffered business income loss as a result of COVID-19 and its…
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Insurer Seeks to Avoid COVID-19 Business Interruption Class Action in Washington Federal Court

Given the nationwide momentum in COVID-19 related BI claims, it is important to keep an eye on the classes on-file and how courts deal with the insurers’ arguments to strike them.  In Germack v. The Dentists Insurance Co., case number 2:20-cv-00661, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, the insurer, The…
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Recent PA Supreme Court Decision Upholding Governor’s Declaration of Natural Disaster Has Potential To Advance Arguments for Business Interruption Claimants

The business interruption litigation arena is heating up and a recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision certainly has the potential to advance the ball for policyholders seeking coverage for lost business income and extra expense as a result of COVID-19 even though it did not involve an insurance dispute.  In Friends of DeVito, et al. v….
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Texas Supreme Court Creates Exception to the “Eight-Corners Rule”

Generally, insurance contracts will include a “duty to defend”, which gives an insurer both the right and obligation to defend a policyholder against lawsuits. To determine whether this duty exists, Texas courts use the “eight-corners rule”. This rule limits courts to the terms of the policy and the pleadings against the insured when deciding whether…
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Texas Supreme Court Confirms Prompt Payment Protections for Appraisal Awards – Another Win for Policyholders

One source of protection for policyholders is the Texas Prompt Payment of Claims Act (TPPCA), which places various deadlines on an insurance company’s claims processing. In order to encourage that claims are timely paid, the TPPCA penalizes insurers who break those deadlines. Recently, the Texas Supreme Court decided several cases which raised the question of…
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Texas Supreme Court Confirms “Eight-Corners Rule,” A Win For Policyholders

Why Hire An Insurance Attorney?

The “eight-corners rule” has often been cited in Texas courts by insurance lawyers for the proposition that an insurer’s duty to defend is determined by the claims alleged in the petition and the coverage provided by the policy.  The “eight-corners” refers to the four corners of the policy and the four corners of the petition. …
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