NEWS & ANALYSIS


Insurer Fights NC Theaters' 7th Circ. Virus Coverage Appeal

By Ben Zigterman

A Tokio Marine unit argued Tuesday that the Seventh Circuit correctly dismissed a COVID-19 coverage appeal last month and should do so again in a separate case from a North Carolina movie theater chain.

Attys Say State High Courts Should Weigh COVID Issues

By Shawn Rice

COVID-19 coverage issues should continue to be sent to the highest courts in each state instead of being decided piecemeal by federal courts, policyholder attorneys told Law360 on the same day that the Seventh Circuit heard four more cases over denied insurance coverage for losses during the pandemic.

1 COVID Case Wasn't Insured 'Outbreak' At NJ Preschool

By Matthew Santoni

A Goddard preschool in New Jersey can't demand COVID-19 coverage from its insurer under its policy for "communicable disease" because a single case at the school wasn't an "outbreak" that led to the statewide shutdown, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Friday.

Marketing Co. Asks 9th Circ. To Revive Virus Coverage Suit

By Eli Flesch

A California-based marketing company asked the Ninth Circuit to revive its pandemic coverage suit against a CNA unit, saying that the presence of the coronavirus at its Newport Beach offices caused the kind of physical loss required for coverage.

2nd Circ. Says Earlier Ruling Disposes Of Delis' Virus Suit

By Shane Dilworth

The Second Circuit upheld tossing a proposed class action coverage dispute Thursday brought by the owners of three delis over pandemic-related losses, saying it previously found that the inability to use a property due to government orders does not constitute physical loss or damage.

NM Eye Practice's Virus Coverage Suit Survives Dismissal Bid

By Ben Zigterman

An ophthalmology and optometry practice in New Mexico avoided dismissal of its COVID-19 coverage suit after a state judge denied Cincinnati Insurance Co.'s effort to get the suit dropped.

NJ Firm Says Hartford Misses Mark In Virus Coverage Fight

By Jeannie O'Sullivan

Fleming.Ruvoldt PLLC blasted a Hartford unit's bid to escape the firm's lawsuit over the denial of insurance coverage for COVID-19 pandemic losses, telling a New Jersey state court that the insurer's defense argument ignores the unique nature of the firm's claims.

8th Circ. Mulls Virus Exclusion COVID-19 Coverage Suit

By Shawn Rice

The Eighth Circuit pondered on Wednesday if it can affirm dismissal of four dental practices' proposed class suit with Hartford units over pandemic-related losses based on the federal appellate court's previous ruling and if it can skip addressing a virus exclusion in the policies. 

Health System's Virus Coverage Suit Sent Back To State Court

By Eli Flesch

One of the largest U.S. physician-owned health systems can take its pandemic coverage suit back to state court, a Texas federal judge ruled, saying the system properly included two Texas parties in its suit against a Liberty Mutual unit.

Tavern's Virus Coverage Suit Should Be Tossed, Judge Says

By Ben Zigterman

A Liberty Mutual unit shouldn't have to face an Oregon bar and grill's pandemic coverage suit, a federal magistrate judge recommended Monday, finding that the restaurant's case was not so distinguishable from the many other coronavirus insurance suits that have been dismissed.

Zurich Ducks Coverage Of Philly Restaurants' COVID Losses

By Ganesh Setty

A Zurich unit will not have to cover the manager of more than a dozen Philadelphia-area restaurants because of a microorganism exclusion in its property insurance policy, a Pennsylvania federal court ruled.

Conn. Tribal Authority Fights Bid To Toss Virus Coverage Suit

By Ganesh Setty

The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority urged a Connecticut state court to let its pandemic coverage action against Factory Mutual Insurance Co. survive, arguing that COVID-19 did not actually have to be present on the property of its resort and casino for coverage to kick in. 

Policyholder Attys Hail Wash. Justices' Entry Into Virus Fight

By Shawn Rice

Policyholder attorneys welcomed the Washington Supreme Court's announcement Wednesday that it would take on its first COVID-19 coverage suit to address whether a pediatric dental practice is covered for losses allegedly caused by government-imposed restrictions during the pandemic.

'Possibilities' Can't Halt Virus Coverage Case, 2nd Circ. Told

By Shawn Rice

Two deli owners asked the Second Circuit in oral arguments Wednesday to stay their appeal in their suit seeking coverage for pandemic-related losses, saying New York's highest court could take on a similar case, but Cincinnati Insurance argued that the "stacks of possibilities" aren't enough to grant the restaurants' request.

What To Know As Mass. Justices Tackle COVID Coverage Row

By Shawn Rice

Much is at stake Friday when the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court will quiz three Boston-area restaurants and their insurer about whether losses caused by COVID-19 government restrictions should be covered, in the first oral arguments before a state's highest court in a pandemic business interruption case.

No Coverage For Theater's COVID Losses, Appeals Court Says

By Hope Patti

Cincinnati Insurance does not owe coverage to Indiana's largest professional nonprofit theater for its pandemic-related business losses, a Hoosier State appellate court ruled Tuesday, saying the theater did not claim a direct physical loss as defined by its insurance policy.

2nd Circ. Delivers Another Virus Coverage Win For Insurers

By Shane Dilworth

The Second Circuit kept the streak alive for insurance carriers fighting coverage of business losses stemming from COVID-19 shutdown orders in a recent decision that upheld the dismissal of a New York art gallery's suit against a Hartford unit.

D&O Insurance Cases To Watch In 2022

By Daphne Zhang

Insurance coverage battles involving special-purpose acquisition companies, the Seventh Circuit's take on False Claims Act-related coverage disputes, and the Delaware high court's take on whether appraisal actions are securities claims have set up 2022 as another big year for director and officer insurance rulings. Here, Law360 breaks down top D&O insurance cases and trends to watch this year.

NJ Casino Scores Partial Virus Coverage Win

By Ben Zigterman

Ocean Casino Resort's COVID-19 coverage suit can continue against three of its four insurers after a New Jersey state judge found Wednesday that the Atlantic City casino has sufficiently alleged "direct physical loss or damage," a phrase the judge said was ambiguous.

Wash. Yoga Studio Wants 9th Circ. Revival Of COVID Suit

By Ben Zigterman

A hot yoga studio In Washington state asked the Ninth Circuit to revive its COVID-19 coverage lawsuit, arguing that its understanding of physical loss was reasonable and warranted coverage from Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance.