Posts from May 2016.
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On May 20, the Eight Circuit held that the State Bank of Bellingham was covered for losses following the criminal third party wire transfer of $485,000 from the bank to a foreign account. The money was stolen by hackers in 2011 after a bank employee inadvertently left one of three security measures disabled and computers running overnight.

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Last month, I wrote about State Farm's "Dirty Little Secret." After a non-jury trial, Florida's Second Judicial Circuit (Leon County) declared that data submitted by State Farm Florida Insurance Company ("State Farm") to Florida's Office of Insurance Regulation ("OIR"), as required by Fla. Stat. 624.424(10), constituted a "trade secret" under Florida law. The Circuit Court released its written opinion on May 2, 2016.

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Andrea DeField’s update, and her original post discuss portions of the proposed Restatement of the Law on Liability Insurance and how they may alter the consequences for breaching the duty to defend. The proposed Restatement contains many other provisions that may prove relevant to future coverage disputes, particularly ones governed by state law that is less developed than in states like New York, California, and Florida.

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In an article recently published in Bloomberg/BNA Privacy and Security Law Report, Hunton lawyers Syed Ahmad, Sergio Oehninger and Patrick McDermott discuss a recent decision finding insurance coverage for a cyber-related incident.  In the article, the authors dissect whether information made available on the internet is “published” if there is no evidence that anyone ever accessed the information.  As the authors and the court conclude, coverage is indeed available under the general liability policy at issue, demonstrating that general liability insurance can provide ...
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As a follow-up to my post yesterday concerning the New York Court of Appeals' decision in In the Matter of Viking Pump, Inc. and Warren Pumps, LLC, Insurance Appeals, where the New York high court confirmed that policyholders may allocate all amounts of loss to a single policy and a single policy year, Syed Ahmad, a partner in our Insurance Coverage Counseling and Litigation team, was interviewed by Law360 about the decision's broad-ranging implications. As Mr. Ahmad explained in an article appearing today in Law360, titled NY Allocation Ruling Speeds Policyholders' Road To ...

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On Tuesday, May 3, 2016, the New York Court of Appeals held that each of several excess liability insurers can be wholly responsible for the entire extent of their policyholders' asbestos liabilities.  The Court further held that "vertical" exhaustion would apply; rejecting the insurers' attempt to apply "horizontal" exhaustion before upper-layer policies must respond.  The decision, in In the Matter of Viking Pump, Inc. and Warren Pumps, LLC, Insurance Appeals, comes in response to two questions certified from the Delaware Supreme Court:

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The Eleventh Circuit confirmed in First Mercury Insurance Company v. Excellent Computing Distributors, Inc., No. 15-10120 (11th Cir. Apr. 20, 2016), that policyholders need not await adjudication of underlying liability litigation before obtaining a confirmation of coverage. The decision arose from a declaratory judgment action concerning the availability of insurance coverage for an underlying negligence suit against the policyholder. The district court dismissed the declaratory judgment action, finding it "inappropriate to exercise jurisdiction over an action seeking a declaration of the plaintiff's indemnity obligations absent a determination of the insureds' liability.” The court also noted that "significant factual questions necessary for a resolution of [the] declaratory judgment action are at issue in the state [court] action, and have yet to be resolved.” But the court did not identify the factual questions.

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