Monthly Archives: March 2014

Social Media — The Possibilities Are Endless!

Facebook.  Instagram.  YouTube.  Twitter.  LinkedIn.  SnapChat.  Flickr.  Google+.  Tumblr.   WeChat.  MySpace.  WhatsApp.  Reddit.  The list of social media and networking sites goes on and on.  It’s fairly common knowledge these days that a defendant can use social media and networking sites such as those  to investigate personal injury claimants.  In addition, more and more companies are using these types of sources to research potential employees.  You may be surprised to learn, however, that social media can be an extremely useful tool for the investigation of property damage and business interruption losses. Consider some scenarios: An insured submits a claim for damage to a roof, asserting that it was the result  of a recent storm.  However, using the “Historical Imagery” capability

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Posted in Investigation

A New York Court Bars Coverage for a Power Outage Caused by Superstorm Sandy

This week saw a New York court bar a policyholder’s claim for business interruption occasioned by the loss of off-site power after Superstorm Sandy.  In Johnson Gallagher Magliery, LLC v. Charter Oak Fire Ins. Co., 2014 WL 1041831 (S.D.N.Y., March 18, 2014), the federal court held that a law firm could not recover for the six-day period during which one of Consolidated Edison’s networks was out-of-service.  The network was shut down preemptively several hours before the storm, and the contract of insurance’s “acts or decisions” exclusion was held to bar coverage for that period of time.  In addition, a “water” exclusion operated to preclude coverage for the time necessary to clean, repair, and re-energize the system after the flooding where

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Posted in Acts or Decisions, Business Interuption, Direct Physical Loss or Damage, Flood, Superstorm Sandy

The House and Senate Vote to Roll Back National Flood Insurance Program Premium Increases

Congress has officially placed the bipartisan Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act in hands of President Obama.  If enacted, it will undo significant provisions of a 2012 law that caused sharp flood insurance rate increases. On March 4, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 306-91 to pass the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014, H.R. 3370.  This repeals portions of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act.  Just yesterday, March 16, the U.S. Senate voted 72-22 to approve the bill and send it to the President for his consideration. For those who don’t remember the Biggert-Waters Act, it was passed back in 2012 with overwhelming support in both houses of Congress.  It called for changes to the National Flood Insurance Program. 

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Posted in Flood, Flood Insurance

The Fourth Circuit Clarifies Who Is A Direct Supplier Under Contingent Business Interruption Coverage

In Millennium Inorganic Chemicals, Ltd. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co. et al., — F.3d. — , 2014 WL 642993 (4th Cir., Feb. 20, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently clarified who constitutes a direct supplier of goods and services under contingent business interruption (CBI) insurance, and it specifically rejected arguments that the undefined term “direct” in the coverage grants of the CBI endorsements at issue was ambiguous in nature. The policyholder, Millennium Inorganic Chemicals, Ltd., processed titanium dioxide at its facility in Western Australia, using natural gas that it received via a pipeline.  It purchased the gas from Alinta Sales Pty Ltd., a retail gas supplier.  Alinta, in turn, purchased the gas it

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Posted in Ambiguity, Business Interuption, Contingent Business Interruption, Explosion
About The Property Insurance Law Observer
For more than four decades, Cozen O’Connor has represented all types of property insurers in jurisdictions throughout the United States, and it is dedicated to keeping its clients abreast of developments that impact the insurance industry. The Property Insurance Law Observer will survey court decisions, enacted or proposed legislation, and regulatory activities from all 50 states. We will also include commentary on current issues and developing trends of interest to first-party insurers.
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