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  Last week, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation agreed to at least one mini-MDL, consolidating the business interruption lawsuits filed against Society Insurance Co.  At the same time, it decided against consolidation of cases against several other insurers, saying it would be inefficient. In August the MDL panel ruled against centralizing all COVID-19 business interruption lawsuits because of differences between policies and unique facts of certain policyholders.  However, the panel requested additional briefing…
Last Wednesday, the Supreme Court released its December arguments calendar. Included on the calendar was CIC Services v. IRS, a case we first blogged about in 2016.  Since then, our firm has been involved as counsel for an amicus party, the district court dismissed the case, the Sixth Circuit affirmed in a 2-1 decision, and the Supreme Court has granted certiorari.  The issue that the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on December…
  Last week the Eleventh Circuit shocked the legal world by ruling that incentive payments to named representatives in class actions are improper, striking a $6,000 award to the plaintiff in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act class action . Johnson v. NPAS Solutions, LLC, No. 18-12344, “Slip Op.” (11th Cir. 2020).   Incentive awards are a special payment to the named plaintiffs in class actions.  Courts began awarding these in the 1980s, and they are…
Two months ago, without any prior warning or public notice, the IRS issued Notice2016-66 which defined a number of common captive insurance transactions as “transactions of interest.” The Notice is limited to captive insurers organized under 831(b). The IRS states that these “transactions of interest” have the “potential for tax avoidance or evasion.” It places reporting responsibilities on the captive insurers and the owners of captive insurance companies, as well as a number of other…
Expansion of Coverage: North Carolina Crime Coverage Part:  Embezzlement Is the Owner-Manager of your Vendor your “Employee?”             On November 14, 2014, the Eastern District of North Carolina entered summary judgment in favor of an insured seeking coverage for embezzlement for actions by owners of a vendor. Colony Tire Corp. v. Fed. Ins. Co., No. 2:15 CV 27, 2016 WL 6683590 (Nov. 14, 2016 E.D.N.C.)             The insured was seeking coverage under a claims-made policy…
As we have previously reported, the North Carolina Industrial Commission was tasked to investigate a prescription formulary for North Carolina State workers.  The results of the investigation were published earlier this year.  The Commission considered the potential savings, benefits, and implementation procedures of a drug formulary, not just for State workers, but for the workers’ compensation system as a whole.  Also requested specifically by the General Assembly, the Commission also investigated the use of…
In the wake of Hurricane Matthew and its associated flooding (particularly in North Carolina and South Carolina), a recent case of first impression in the Sixth Circuit may be cited by both damaged businesses and insurers and insurance brokers in the Carolinas. Harris v. Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Company, __ F.3d __, 2016 WL 4174381 (6th Cir. Aug. 8, 2016). Writing for a unanimous panel, Judge Ralph B. Guy, Jr. held that the National Flood Insurance…
With Hurricane Matthew downgraded to a tropical cyclone, it is time for affected businesses, property owners, and insurers to focus on quantifying the amount of damage caused by the storm.  By some estimates, Hurricane Matthew will generation over 100,000 insurance claims and between $4 billion and $7.5 billion in property losses.  Although the focus is typically on pre-storm preparation, the immediate steps taken this week will be important to any business owner seeking to present an adequate…
Businesses in Charlotte, North Carolina will most likely be covered by property insurance for damage caused by protesters. Additionally, some may be able to recover lost business income. Over the last two evenings, Charlotte has been the site of protests as a result of the police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, a 43 year old man. On Tuesday night, protestors blocked Interstate 85 near the UNC-Charlotte area, and looted a nearby Wal-Mart. On Wednesday night,…