Travelers Liable for Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress For Denial of Insurance Claim Based on False Accusation of Arson

“Deep are the sorrows that spring from false ideas for which no man is culpable.” The Connecticut Appellate Court relied on this quote from George Eliot’s novel, Silas Marner, about a man falsely accused of stealing, as partial justification for affirming a trial court judgment holding Travelers Home and Marine... Read more →


Is an Insurer Obligated to Warn Policyholders of the Presence of Mold in Insured Premises?

I have had policyholders complain to me about the fact that an insurance company did not advise them about the scope of damage from a particular loss. Until recently, no Connecticut court had decided whether an insurance company has a duty to inform its policyholder of the presence of mold... Read more →


Connecticut Supreme Court Rules that Motor Carrier Public Liability Endorsement Does Not Apply to Intrastate Transportation

In a case of interest to motor carrier policyholders and risk managers, the Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that a federally mandated insurance endorsement that requires insurers to pay certain liability judgments against a motor carrier even if the insurance policy otherwise excludes coverage only applies when a motor carrier... Read more →


Insurer Must Defend Class-Action Suit Alleging Unauthorized Disclosure of Medical Records

In a recent decision of interest to corporate policyholders exposed to liability claims for data breaches or unauthorized disclosure of confidential information, a federal circuit court of appeals has ruled that coverage for liability claims arising from the unlawful exposure of medical records over the internet may exist under a... Read more →


IS AN INSURER'S RIGHT TO CANCEL AN INSURANCE POLICY FOR NON-PAYMENT OF PREMIUM ABSOLUTE?

There is an old adage in the legal profession that bad facts can make bad law. A recent Connecticut Superior Court decision serves as an example that an insurer’s right to cancel an insurance policy for nonpayment of premium is not absolute. In 21st Century North America Insurance Company v.... Read more →


INCONTESTABILTY CLAUSE IN LIFE INSURANCE POLICY RENEWED UPON POLICY REINSTATEMENT

Insurance companies may rescind an insurance policy that was issued based upon fraud. When a party has been induced by fraud to enter into a contract, the party may rescind the contract and recover restitution or it may affirm the contract and recover damages caused by the fraud. Situations may... Read more →


INSURER LIABLE FOR PRE-TENDER DEFENSE FEES AND PREJUDGMENT INTEREST

I recently wrote an article published in the Connecticut Law Tribune about the Massachusetts Supreme Court’s decision in Boyle v. Zurich American Ins. Co., 36 N.E.3d 1229 (Mass. 2015), in which the Court held Zurich Insurance Company liable for a default judgment entered against its insured notwithstanding that the insured... Read more →


When is Property Damage Caused by Vandalism vs. Theft?

In a case of first impression in Connecticut, a Connecticut federal court recently addressed when property damage caused by intruders breaking into a building while stealing items from within the building constitutes damage from vandalism covered under a property policy versus damage from theft excluded under the policy. Mercedes Zee... Read more →


Extrinsic Evidence May Not be Used to Avoid Duty to Defend Additional Insured

A Connecticut trial court recently ruled that a liability insurer breached its duty to defend the City of Waterbury as an additional insured under a tenant’s liability insurance policy. The insurer failed to defend the city in a lawsuit seeking damages for personal injuries sustained by a patron of a... Read more →


Is an Excess Liability Insurer Required to Provide Coverage When the Primary Insurer is Insolvent?

Corporations and property owners faced with toxic tort and environmental claims arising from alleged exposure to toxins spanning many years often need to evaluate insurance coverage available under multiple insurance policies issued by different insurance companies over different years. Issues arise when one or more insurance companies who issued such... Read more →