Insurance - General

Back to homepage

Reservation of Rights Requirements Adopted by South Carolina Supreme Court

The South Carolina Supreme Court’s recent decision in Harleysville Group Insurance v. Heritage Communities, Inc., Appellate Case Nos. 2013-001281 and 2013-001291, 2017 WL 105021 (S.C. Jan. 11, 2017) affirms what is and is not covered “property damage” under commercial general

Read More

Got Crime Insurance for Your Condo Association?

While a condo association may have a related business insurance policy for liability, property as well as directors’ and officers’ coverage, there is a glaring risk that many big and small associations might ignore – until the damages and losses

Read More

Has Your Insurance Got You Covered?

Does your insurance company play fair and square with you?  Not always, asserts attorney Tara Snow, a partner at Novitt, Sahr & Snow. And if you are not on the ball, you could lose significant coverage.  Snow points to a

Read More

Federal Appeals Court Finds Luxury Condo Owner’s Suit Filed too Late Against Insurer (NV)

A luxury high rise condominium located in Las Vegas, Nevada, was found to have been barred from recovery of its $5 million window damage claim, according to a ruling by the Ninth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals.  The

Read More

Oregon High Court Clarifies How To Read the Four Corners of a Complaint

On December 8, 2016, the Oregon Supreme Court issued a decision, West Hills Development Co. v. Chartis Claims, Inc., 360 Or. 650 (2016), clarifying what allegations in a construction defect suit will implicate coverage under an “ongoing operations” additional insured

Read More

Is Your Fire Insurance Full of Hot Air?

It was one of the worst fires in Catskills history: The 396-unit Grandview Palace Condominiums, formerly the fabled Brown’s Hotel in the Borscht Belt, erupted in flames on April 14, 2012. Seven of its nine buildings were destroyed, though none

Read More

Why Directors and Officers (D&O) Insurance Is A Must For Homeowner Associations

Did you know that volunteering as a board member for your condo or HOA could jeopardize your personal financial security? You’re actually at risk from lawsuits against the board—whether they have merit or not. Having an indemnification clause in your

Read More

Construction company claims insurance provider failed to protect it (CA)

A trial date has been set for the end of January in an insurance coverage case to determine who is responsible for water and mold damage sustained in a condominium.  Saarman Construction Ltd. was hired by a homeowners association to

Read More

As Building Code Adoption Increases, Insurance Losses Decrease

Maintaining a safe and secure building is a major concern for property owners and managers. Due to the important role buildings play in society, architects and engineers begin plotting out the the safety measures and standards well before the actual

Read More

D&O Insurance — Uncovered

Homeowner Association and Condo boards have a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of the community as a whole, follow the law, and protect the assets and financial stability of the community. Proper insurance plays a major role

Read More

Worker’s Compensation Insurance for Your HOA

As a community association, it may not seem that workers’ compensation is a necessary tool in your arsenal. However, to keep the neighborhood looking good, you probably hire outside vendors, such as contractors, landscapers, etc. If this is the case,

Read More

Condo association accuses insurer of deceptive practices (TX)

A Galveston County condo association is suing a Texas City insurance business, alleging deceptive trade practices.  Eibands Luxury Condominiums Associations Inc. filed a complaint Oct. 19 in Galveston County District Court against Rust Ewing Watt & Haney Inc., et al,

Read More

What Happens Next after Cypress (NJ)

The New Jersey Supreme Court in Cypress Point Condominium Association, Inc. v. Adria Towers, LLC., et al. (A-13/14-15)(076348) finally put to rest (in New Jersey) an issue that has been haunting general contractors and developers since 1979. That is the

Read More

5 Actions an HOA Board Should Take to Clarify Maintenance & Insurance

One common subject that often causes confusion in a homeowners association is grasping the difference between the maintenance responsibilities of an association and the items that are covered by the association’s insurance policy. Often owners and even HOA board members

Read More

Ordinance and Law Insurance for Your HOA

Your HOA probably already has basic insurance to protect your community in the event of a natural disaster. However, basic insurance isn’t always enough to fully pay for what needs to be done. If you want total coverage, your HOA

Read More

New Flood Zones Could Slash Insurance Premiums (NY)

Federal officials, responding to an appeal from Mayor Bill de Blasio, have agreed to redraw the city’s flood maps, which is likely to reduce or eliminate insurance premiums for thousands of buildings currently in flood zones, Crain’s reports.    Read

Read More

Community Associations and Water Damage

When writing insurance for a condominium association or a homeowner’s association insured like a condominium, there are two integral parts of the insurance program: The association’s Insurance and the unit-owners Insurance. The association’s insurance is responsible for the structures and

Read More

Sometimes It’s Hard to Waive Subrogation: Pacific Indemnity v. Deming

According to the recent decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Pacific Indemnity Company v. Deming, 2016 WL 3607028, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 12374 (July 5, 2016) common contractual provisions that defendants frequently assume amount

Read More

Mitigating professional liability risks in the construction industry

Operating a business in the commercial design and engineering sector involves dealing with a host of risks. These threats to a design or engineering firm stem from a variety of factors and can potentially cause the disruption of normal business

Read More

The Earth Movement Exclusion: How Does it Affect Construction Defect Cases?

One of the biggest considerations for parties on both sides of any lawsuit is whether insurance coverage will apply to the plaintiff’s claims. This is especially true in construction defect cases, where the cost of repairing the alleged damage can

Read More

New Jersey Supreme Court Issues Important Ruling for Developers and General Contractors Regarding Coverage Under CGL Insurance Policies

The New Jersey Supreme Court’s August 4, 2016 holding in Cypress Point Condominium Association, Inc. v. Adria Towers, LLC is the latest decision to fall in line with the “strong recent trend” by state and federal courts to recognize that

Read More

NJ Supreme Court Decision Paves the Way for Condominium Associations in Transition to Recover Damages against the Developer and Subcontractors

On August 4, 2016, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued its decision in Cypress Point Condominium Association, Inc. v. Adria Towers, LLC, et al., which held that faulty workmanship by a subcontractor that causes property damage is a covered loss

Read More

Workers’ Compensation: What Your Board-Management Team Should Know

For over a century, states have had laws, rules and regulations in place to ensure that employees who are injured while performing their jobs are adequately taken care of. An uninsured employer that finds itself embroiled in a workers’ compensation

Read More

FEMA Reps Roasted Over Costly Flood Map Error In Ocean City (MD); ‘Disagreement’ Between City, Feds Still Being Worked On

However, in a few areas of the resort, particularly along condo row from 93rd to 123rd streets, FEMA determined through its new maps an existing secondary dune, built in front of several oceanfront properties in the early 1980s is now

Read More

Insurance dispute at trial in Judge Crowder’s courtroom (IL)

According to the complaint, a fire severely damaged the condominium structure on June 20, 2012. At the time of the fire, insurance policies covering the loss had been previously issued by the defendants and were allegedly in full force.  The

Read More

Putting a Premium on Your Insurance Coverage – A Guide to Understanding Condominium Property Claims

Even with proper risk management best practices, it’s impossible to completely avoid all types of insurance claims from happening. At heart, a claim is like any other business dealing—a negotiation. Your ability to convincingly argue your position and support it

Read More

The Blame Game

Most of us can be quick to point fingers. It might be a fender-bender, an overcooked hamburger, or losing the Superbowl on the last play of the game – I know my first instinct is to figure out who is

Read More

New Jersey Supreme Court Gives Supreme Win to Policyholders

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of New Jersey unanimously affirmed the Appellate Division’s holding that consequential damages caused by a subcontractor’s faulty workmanship constitute “property damage” and an “occurrence” under the 1986 Insurance Services Office, Inc. (“ISO”) form commercial general liability

Read More

Issues Involving Illinois Condo Claims

In Chicago, we often find property loss claims that occur at condominium units. Of course, these claims tend to come with their own special issues that require investigation. Aside from general issues that come with all property claims, such as

Read More

Is Ordinance or Law Insurance Right for Your HOA?

Homeowner associations (especially condominiums) are required to properly insure the common elements which often include the structures. As buildings age, the unavoidable happens: they fall out of compliance with building codes. Building code changes periodically to improve fire and life

Read More

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of the Insurance Discovery Rule

I have a number of “First Party Insurance” claims sitting on my desk (e.g. an Association pursuing its own carrier for discovered property damage). Many of these involve the “discovery rule.” Having dealt with this rule on a number of

Read More

Identifying and Protecting Against Storm, Hail and Wind Damage

Although insurance brokers and agents are not meteorologists, they still play a big role in helping their commercial clients identify and protect their businesses against destruction caused by storms. Preparing clients for the random yet inevitable severe weather patterns that

Read More

Do You Know the Limits of Your Homeowners Association’s Insurance?

If you’re a member of an HOA board, you probably know that having insurance for your homeowners association is a necessity to protect the HOA and its members. But do you know what type of insurance you need to have

Read More

Reducing Risk

We all experience risk in our everyday lives. Things such as making our morning coffee in our own kitchen, driving a car or even shopping at our local grocery store are all actions that can put us at risk. We

Read More

Water Losses, Co-owner Negligence, and the Shifting of Association Insurance Deductibles

A classic “right of spring” for attorneys at our firm every year is handling the resolution of water loss disputes for Associations. Most often, these situations arise from a non-resident co-owner’s or foreclosing lender’s failure to properly winterize a vacant

Read More

Insurance and Animal Bites in Your HOA

Question: My condominium association is overrun with dogs. We are concerned that someone will be injured, and we will be sued because we did not impose the proper precautions. What should we do?      Read the Q&A………….

Read More

Another Good Reason to Have Worker’s Compensation Coverage-Death on the Job?

Here is a scenario I feel is critical in the scheme of helping board members understand the importance of having worker’s compensation insurance. Several years ago at a national law conference we were told about a case where a board

Read More

Are You Covered? Insurance for Condos Goes Beyond the Basics

The experts who advise condo associations on insurance matters admit that the basic policies are pretty standardized and often seem to be all the same. Trustees may tend to gloss over the details and assume that anything important relative to

Read More

Reducing Risk

If you are a board member of your association it is important to be alert and attentive when driving or walking through your association property; make sure to assess your territory. Are any street lights burnt out which cause a

Read More

Social Engineering Coverage—Nothing to Do with Stem Cell Research

When I see the words “social” and “engineering” in one sentence, my brain immediately goes to the scientific and medical side. But in this case, we’re talking about something completely different. The term, in this case, refers to the Social

Read More

FEMA ‘error’ may cost condominium owners (MD)

Hundreds of Ocean City condominium owners are finding themselves waist-deep in insurance premiums in the wake of new flood maps that local officials criticize as flawed.    Read the article………….

Read More

Unmatched Property Damage Exclusion

Recently we learned that a nationwide property insurer has adopted an additional endorsement which becomes part of the association’s property insurance policy upon its renewal.  The endorsement states that the policy does not cover the cost to replace undamaged materials

Read More

Extreme Weather Patterns On The Rise

Safeguarding the structural integrity of buildings of all sizes and purposes will be a crucial endeavor for all industries and sectors in the coming years. As extreme weather conditions continue to increase, so too does the risk of damage to

Read More

Homeowners near Upper Rockyford dam might tax themselves to pay for repairs (SC)

A group of Richland County homeowners could be the test case for a solution to pay for costly dam repairs after historic rains and flooding damaged dozens of dams across the state last fall.     Read the article………………

Read More

An Insurer’s Duty to Defend the Insured

A key consideration in developing a litigation strategy is whether or not insurance coverage applies to the causes of action at issue, which is important for both parties. For the plaintiff, coverage can mean that he has a greater chance

Read More

The Need for Professional Liability Insurance for Architects, Engineers and Construction Managers

There are numerous insurance risks associated with every construction project, however, one of the most important policies is all too often overlooked by architects, engineers and construction managers. While many construction firms will do what they can to ensure they

Read More

Certificates of Insurance Don’t Deliver the Protection they Promise for Associations and Managers

We’ve all heard that oral contracts “aren’t worth the paper they’re written on.” The same might be said of the certificates of insurance condo associations demand from their contractors: The certificates aren’t what they appear to be; they don’t provide

Read More

Frenchman’s Bend (LA) map revision backfires in flood

Some homeowners in Frenchman’s Bend subdivision are reeling from their decision to drop flood insurance from their property after a revised flood map was issued that gave them the option.  Read the article…………

Read More

Insurer prevails on late claim dispute against homeowners association

QBE Insurance Corp. was justified in denying a homeowners association’s claim for hailstorm damage because it filed its claim nine months late, and failed to adequately explain the late notice, says a federal appeals court in upholding a lower court

Read More

When Insurance Doesn’t Insure

During the job, one of the subcontractors was seriously injured, and the worker sued the co-op. The board, as is typical in occurrences like this, contacted Utica First, requesting coverage because the co-op had been listed as an additional insured

Read More