The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, applying Federal procedural and Minnesota substantive law, affirmed a district court’s conclusion that insured corporate directors failed to carry their burden to establish that their insurer was responsible for 100% of the fees and costs incurred in connection with a suit against the directors, the corporation, and other parties.  Brand v. Nat’l Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., 2019 WL 3850592 (8th Cir. Aug. 16, 2019).

Continue Reading Declaratory Judgment Pleading and Allocation: Don’t Demand “All or Nothing” Unless You Really Mean It

The United States District Court for the District of Minnesota, applying Minnesota law, has held that coverage is unavailable where the insured failed to report the claim to its insurer “as soon as practicable” as required by the policy’s notice provision.  Citizens Ins. Co. of Am. v. Assessment Sys. Corp., 2019 WL 4014955 (D. Minn. Aug. 26, 2019).

Continue Reading Failure to Provide Notice of Claim “As Soon As Practicable” Precludes Coverage

A Minnesota federal court has held that a prior acts exclusion bars coverage for claims involving wrongful acts that occurred both before and after the applicable prior acts date because the wrongful acts arose from the “same nucleus” of facts.  Tile Shop Holdings, Inc. v. Allied World Nat’l Assurance Co., 2019 WL 2357044 (D. Minn. June 4, 2019).

Continue Reading No Coverage for Claims Alleging Pre- and Post-Prior Acts Date Conduct

Applying Minnesota law, the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota has held that, while an insured’s breach of contract claim was adequately pled, the insured could not pursue a cause of action for bad faith or seek relief in the form of extra-contractual damages.  Lunde v. Cincinnati Ins. Co., 2018 WL 1972475 (D. Minn. Apr. 26, 2018).

Continue Reading Insured Fails to State a Claim for Bad Faith and Cannot Pursue Extra-Contractual Damages Without Independent Tort

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has held that a commercial crime policy does not provide coverage for stolen earnings because the insured did not own the funds at the time they were stolen. 3M Co. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co of Pittsburgh, PA, 2017 WL 2347105 (8th Cir. May 31, 2017).

Continue Reading Eighth Circuit Holds No Coverage under Commercial Crime Policy for Theft of Property Owned by Third Party

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, applying Minnesota law, has affirmed summary judgment in favor of an insurer, holding that the condition precedent of timely notice “as soon as practicable” was not met where the insured provided notice of a lawsuit seven months after the lawsuit was filed without offering any reasons for the delay, even though notice was provided during the claims made policy period.  Food Market Merch., Inc. v. Scottsdale Indem. Co., 2017 WL 2271363 (8th Cir. May 25, 2017).

Continue Reading Eighth Circuit Affirms That Notice Given During Policy Period but Seven Months After Complaint Filed is Not “As Soon As Practicable”

Applying Minnesota law, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has held that a policy’s insured versus insured exclusion bars coverage for a suit filed against the insured company by a former director and two other shareholders regarding share value.  Jerry’s Enterprises, Inc. v. U.S. Specialty Ins. Co., 2017 WL 104468 (8th Cir. Jan. 11, 2017).  The court refused to allocate any portion of the claim brought by the former director’s non-insured shareholder daughters to covered loss. 
Continue Reading Insured v. Insured Exclusion Bars Coverage for Shareholders’ Suit Spearheaded by Former Director

The United States District Court for the District of Minnesota has held that a coverage dispute must be transferred to federal court in Washington, in deference to the insured’s later-filed coverage action pending in that court. Everest Indem. Ins. Co. v. Ro, 2016 WL 4007578 (D. Minn. Jul. 26, 2016). The court also concluded that, under 28 U.S.C. § 1391, venue was improper because no substantial events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred in the District of Minnesota.
Continue Reading Minnesota Federal Court Rejects First to File Rule and Transfers Coverage Litigation to Washington Despite Issuance of Policy in Minnesota

A Minnesota federal district court has held that an insurer was entitled to summary judgment in a breach of contract suit brought by its policyholder after the insurer denied coverage because the policyholder failed to provide notice of the suit “as soon as practicable” in accordance with the terms of the policy. Food Market Merch., Inc. v. Scottsdale Indem. Co., 2016 WL 3976606 (D. Minn. July 22, 2016).
Continue Reading Seven-Month Delay Constitutes Late Notice as a Matter of Law

The United States District Court for the District of Minnesota, applying Minnesota law, has held that certain policy exclusions apply to bar coverage under an employee benefits liability policy for claims arising from the insured’s alleged underfunding of its employees’ pension plan (Plan) and failure to disclose information regarding the funding of the Plan and payment of projected benefits. Publ’g House of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Am. v. Hartford Fire Ins. Co., 2015 WL 5472730 (D. Minn. Sept. 16, 2015).
Continue Reading Exclusions Bar Coverage Under Employee Benefits Liability Policy for Claims Arising From Alleged Underfunding of Pension Plan