Insurance and Reinsurance Disputes Blog

Sometimes it is necessary to obtain evidence from non-parties during a reinsurance arbitration.  Yet, the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) does not expressly sanction non-party (or for that matter any) pre-hearing discovery.  In practice, however, most parties ask the arbitration panel to issue a subpoena to a “hearing” and then negotiate with the non-party about producing documents without the need to appear at a hearing with a witness.  Most non-parties just want the subpoena for their…
Coverage disputes between insurance carriers and policyholders are ripe for resolution through arbitration.  ARIAS•U.S. is working on a project to create an arbitration pathway, including modified rules and requirements for certified arbitrators, for these types of disputes and others.  But unless the parties agree or the insurance contract contains an arbitration clause, the arbitration option is not available. There are, however, a number of insurance policies written for industrial companies by the global insurance marketplace…
When an arbitration panel issues a final award any challenge to that award faces an uphill battle.  That is because under the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) a final arbitration award must be confirmed (if requested) and can only be vacated for a very narrow set of reasons.  Of the four grounds for vacatur under Section 10 of the FAA, subsection (a)(4) provides that an award may be vacated  “where the arbitrators exceeded their powers, or so…
When a policyholder sues its carrier for breach of contract or bad faith, one question that arises is whether the policyholder should have to plead alleged damages with particularity, or whether the policyholder can sustain its claims with less specific allegations.  A New York appellate court recently declined to impose that higher, particularity standard.…
Directors and officers (“D&O”) liability insurance generally protects directors and officers against legal expenses and personal liability for acts and omissions taken in their capacity as directors and officers of the insured company.  In a recent case, coverage was excluded where directors also acted as investors of the company.…
When the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) passed into English law on 25 May 2018, one of the headlines that heralded the new legislation was the Information Commissioner Office’s (“ICO”) new power to impose fines of up to €20million, or 4% of global turnover (whichever is the higher) on organisations that breach the GDPR.  Given the dramatic increase of the ICO’s power to impose fines, one of the questions asked by insurance market participants…
Insurance companies often have their backs against the wall in any dispute.  Typically, in a coverage or premium action brought by the insurance company, it bears the burden of proving its insurance contract and any exclusionary endorsements.  In inter-company disputes that may be a bit easier and the rules may be a bit looser (e.g., reinsurance arbitrations), but in court, the policy has to be proven by the best evidence available. Even if the dispute…
Last summer, a New York state motion court granted a petition by the title insurance industry challenging a New York State Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) regulation promulgated to prohibit certain practices affecting title insurance costs.  That order has now been modified by an appellate court and the petition has been denied except for two subsections of the regulation.…
A new arbitration decision was handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court on January 8, 2019.  My colleagues in our labor and employment practice swiftly blogged about the new decision so I won’t repeat their cogent analysis. The case has nothing to do with insurance or reinsurance. But the principles set forth by Justice Kavanaugh in his first opinion (unanimous at that) are relevant to insurance and reinsurance arbitrations because most insurance and reinsurance arbitrations…