Many management liability exclusions contain contractual liability exclusions to clarify that the policy doesn’t provide coverage for contractual breach claims. However, as I have pointed out in prior posts, insurers, in reliance on the exclusion’s broad wording, often seek to apply these exclusions broadly, to apply to a wide variety of kinds of claims beyond contractual liability disputes. In a recent Fifth Circuit decision, the appellate court rejected an insurer’s attempt to apply a contractual liability exclusion to preclude coverage for an underlying breach of fiduciary duty claim. The reasoning of the Fifth Circuit in rejecting the insurer’s arguments provide policyholders with common sense reasoning on which to rely in seeking to avoid the application of the exclusion to noncontractual claims.Continue Reading Contractual Liability Exclusion Does Not Bar Coverage for Fiduciary Duty Claim
Regular readers of this blog know that among my hobby horse issues are the various questions surrounding late notice of claim. Timeliness is of course a standard conditions for complying with an insurance policy’s notice requirements. Policies also contain other notice conditions, such as, for example, where the notice must be sent and so on. In an interesting recent ruling, the Fifth Circuit examined a professional liability insurance policy’s conditions of notice, finding that while the timely provision of notice is a material condition, others of the policy’s notice conditions were immaterial, and held, applying Texas law, that the insurer could be relieved of its coverage obligations for the policyholder’s failure to comply with an immaterial condition only if the failure prejudiced the insurer.
Continue Reading Material and Immaterial Conditions of Notice of Claim
The insured vs. insured exclusion is a standard exclusion in most management liability insurance policies. The exclusion precludes coverage for claims brought by one insured against another. The IvI exclusions in most management liability insurance policies typically include a number of exceptions to the exclusion preserving coverage for claims that otherwise would be excluded. In a recent decision, a Texas intermediate appellate court found that the IvI exclusion in an investment management firm’s policy did not preclude coverage for an arbitration award because the underlying dispute arose out of an employment practices claim and therefore the dispute – including even the derivative claims the claimant asserted in the arbitration – came within the exclusion’s coverage carve-back for wrongful employment practices claims. As discussed below, the court’s opinion has a number of interesting features.
Continue Reading IvI Exclusion’s Carve-Back Preserves Coverage for Entire Claim
When the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed in its March 2018 Cyan decision that state courts retain concurrent jurisdiction over ’33 Act liability actions, commentators suggested that plaintiffs’ lawyers would opt to pursue Section 11 claims in state court, either in preference to or in addition to parallel federal court actions. Indeed, in many lawsuits filed in the past few months involving IPO companies, plaintiffs’ lawyers have indeed resorted to state court. However, a recent decision from a Texas state court highlights the fact that whatever advantages the plaintiffs’ lawyers may think they have by proceeding in state court, their claims will still face scrutiny – and in the specific case at issue in Texas, dismissal. As noted in a November 13, 2018 Law 360 article (here), the Texas court’s dismissal is among the first by a state court following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Cyan.
Continue Reading Texas State Court Dismisses Post-Cyan Securities Act Lawsuit