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Category Archives: Insurance Law

Illinois Appellate Court Permits Insured to Prove Terms of Missing Policies with Specimen Coverage Forms for the Missing Policy Periods

March 28, 2018

Environmental contamination lawsuits frequently involve polluting activities which took place decades ago – long before the advent of computers and before it was possible for businesses to store information in an electronic format. When these lawsuits arise and a claim is tendered to an insurance carrier for defense and indemnity, the parties often struggle to […]

Self-Serving Pleadings for Additional Insureds

March 14, 2018

In a recent decision, the Illinois Appellate Court, Third District, considered what should and should not be considered by a trial court when making a determination on a motion to stay a declaratory judgment action on insurance coverage pending resolution of the underlying litigation. Pekin Insurance Company v. Johnson-Downs Construction, Inc., 2017 IL App (3d) […]

Punitive Damages Demand Alone Likely Insufficient to Trigger Independent Counsel

March 6, 2018

Illinois courts have long made clear that when a conflict of interest exists between an insured and its insurer, the insured is entitled to independent counsel of the insured’s own choosing and at the insurer’s reasonable expense. See Maryland Cas. Co. v. Peppers, 64 Ill.2d 187, 193 (1976). What is less clear, however, is when […]

When Independent Insurance Producers are Not-So-Independent: Illinois Appellate Court Rejects Insurer Request for Policy Rescission Due to Producer Conduct

February 27, 2018

Independent insurance producers often are thought to be, well, independent from the insurance companies for which they sell policies. Independent producers typically sell insurance policies for a number of carriers, and often work with intermediaries to sell policies for even more carriers, so that they can offer their policyholder clients the insurance product most suitable […]

Read Your Insurance Policy Carefully: Insured Bound to Terms of Policy Despite Alleged Representations by Insurer’s Agent

February 6, 2018

As we have learned in recent days, we all need to be careful with the things we say, for sometimes those things we say can be used against us. But the life lessons do not end there. We also need to read things carefully, for the things we fail to read can be used against […]

Missouri Appellate Court Finds Ambiguity in Anti-Stacking Provision, Allows Stacking of Limits of Liability in Four Separate Auto Liability Policies

February 1, 2018

The Missouri Court of Appeals, Southern District, issued an opinion on Jan. 31, 2018, in Shelter Mutual Insurance Company v. Lester that allowed stacking of full auto liability coverage policy limits on four separate policies. The underlying matter involved bodily injury claims brought by multiple claimants. Each of the auto insurer’s liability policies had applicable […]

Illinois Appellate Court Rejects Request to Re-Write Insurer’s Additional Insured Coverage to Conform with Construction Agreement

January 30, 2018

It is commonplace in construction projects for a contractor to require its subcontractors to purchase liability insurance that protects against certain claims and that includes the contractor as an additional insured. The problem is that many times the policy that the subcontractor purchases does not on its face meet the requirements set forth in the […]

Be Careful What You Say: Insurer Estopped from Asserting Coverage Defenses Based on Agent’s Representations

January 16, 2018

We all say things we regret. But sometimes, those things we say can be used against us. The same goes for insurance companies. So held the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, in its recent unpublished decision in Country Preferred Ins. Co. v. Badri-Monaghan, 2017 IL App (2d) 170134-U. The court started the year with a […]

Insurer Seeks Rescission Due to Misrepresentation in an Application for Insurance – Court Rules that an Insurer is Required to not only Ask Questions but also to Investigate Answers

December 21, 2017

Background Virtually all property policies provide an insurer with the right to rescind coverage when there’s evidence that the insured intentionally concealed or misrepresented material facts in their application for insurance. For a misrepresentation to be deemed material, it must have been an untrue fact that would have, if the truth was known, caused the […]

Missouri Courts’ Application of the Pollution Exclusion: A Contrast of Two Very Different Approaches to Insurance Policy Interpretation

November 14, 2017

In its October 31, 2017, opinion in Doe Run Resources Corp. v. American Guarantee & Liability Ins., the Missouri Supreme Court considered whether a general liability policy’s pollution exclusion barred coverage for alleged bodily harm caused by exposure to toxic emissions emanating from Doe Run’s lead production facilities in La Oroya, Peru. The exclusion removed […]