The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, applying Georgia law, has held that an insurer has a duty to defend a lawsuit where an award of attorneys’ fees might constitute covered “Loss,” even though the lawsuit did not otherwise seek covered amounts.  AEGIS Elec. & Gas Int’l Serv. Ltd. v. ECI Mgmt. LLC, No. 19-11114, 2020 WL 4359610 (11th Cir. July 30, 2020).

Continue Reading 11th Circuit Holds Insurer Must Defend Lawsuit Where Award of Attorneys’ Fees Was the Only Potentially Covered Relief

The Georgia Court of Appeals has held that correspondence to an insured attorney from a former client’s new counsel potentially alluding to a malpractice suit did not constitute a claim and that questions of fact remained as to whether the correspondence gave the insured a basis to reasonably expect a claim. Joseph v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, 2020 WL 3168543 (Ga. Ct. App. June 15, 2020).

Continue Reading Pre-Policy Period Letters to Disqualified Counsel from Claimant’s New Attorney are Not a Claim or A Prior Incident that Could be the Basis for a Claim

On a certified question from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, the Supreme Court of Georgia has held that the traditional rule of pro rata allocation of coverage applied when two policies’ “other insurance” provisions conflict, regardless of the fact that one of the coverages was from a state-regulated insurance program.  Nat’l Cas. Co. v. Ga. Sch. Bds. Ass’n-Risk Mgmt. Fund, 2018 WL 3850936 (Ga. Aug. 14, 2018).

Continue Reading Georgia Court Reaffirms Longstanding Rule on Conflicting “Other Insurance” Provisions

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, applying Georgia law, has held that mishandling of mail by an insured’s employee which led to noncompliance with a notice requirement in an insurance policy cannot, as a matter of law, excuse the noncompliance.  Johnson & Bryan, Inc. v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 2018 WL 3387525 (11th Cir. July 11, 2018).  In affirming the grant of the insurer’s motion to dismiss, the appeals court agreed that whether a delay was justified was not a question for a jury where the insured’s failure to meet the requirement resulted from its own negligence.

Continue Reading Mailroom Mix-Up Cannot Excuse Notice Requirement Noncompliance

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, applying Georgia law, has affirmed a district court’s ruling that a fraudulent scheme using telephones to exploit a computer coding vulnerability in the insured’s system that ultimately led to a loss was not covered under a computer fraud provision in a commercial crime policy.  Interactive Commc’ns Int’l v. Great Am. Ins. Co., 2018 WL 2149769 (11th Cir. May 10, 2018).  Unlike the district court, however, the appellate court held that the scheme involved the “use of a[] computer.”  A summary of the district court opinion can be found here.

Continue Reading Fraudulent Voucher Redemption Scheme Perpetrated by Phone Involves “Use of Computer” but Does Not “Directly Result” in Covered Loss

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, applying Georgia law, has held that there is no coverage for multiple lawsuits under employment practices liability insurance policies where the insured failed to comply with the policies’ notice requirements.  Nat’l Cas. Co. v. Fulton Cnty., Ga., 2018 WL 1523089 (N.D. Ga. Mar. 28, 2018).

Continue Reading No Coverage for Underlying Lawsuits Due to Insured’s Failure to Provide Notice as Soon as Practicable

A Georgia federal district court has held that a fraudulent scheme using telephones to exploit a computer coding vulnerability in the insured’s system that ultimately led to a loss was not covered under a computer fraud provision in a commercial crime policy.  Incomm Holdings, Inc. v. Great Am. Ins. Co., 2017 WL 1021749 (N.D. Ga. Mar. 16, 2017).

Continue Reading Loss Caused by Fraudulent Exploitation of Coding Error Does Not Implicate Computer Fraud Coverage

Applying Georgia law, a federal district court has held that rescission of an insurance policy based on a material misrepresentation in the application voids all provisions of the policy, including the “innocent insured” provision, such that the insureds who had no knowledge of the fraud cannot rely on that provision to preserve coverage for themselves. ProAssurance Cas. Co. v. Smith, 2016 WL 4223666 (S.D. Ga. Aug. 9, 2016).
Continue Reading Rescission Voids All Policy Provisions, Including Innocent Insured Provision