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October 2008 Archives

October 6, 2008

Webcast -- TICL's Executive Board Meeting -- This Tuesday, October 7, 2008

You are invited to view the Torts Insurance & Compensation Law Section in action. On October 7th, the Section's Executive Committee will hold its quarterly meeting at the New York Bar Center. The first hour of this meeting will be broadcast over the internet and available for viewing at www.nysba.org/TICLWebcast. To view the webcast, simply access the link above on the day of the meeting and follow the directions on the screen.

Among the items on the agenda will be the Section's consideration and proposal of legislation to amend Insurance Law 3420(d). Also known as the disclaimer statute, the Executive Committee will examine whether it should require a policyholder or claimant show prejudice when an insurer's disclaimer is late, but otherwise valid. The Executive Committee will also address adoption of a strategic plan, and upcoming Section events.

This will be the first webcast by any NYSBA Section of one of its events. Our goal is to allow our members to view how the Section works, and afford to become more involved.

October 12, 2008

Student Writing Contest for Torts, Insurance and Compensation Law Weblog

TO: All Law School Career Center Staff

FROM: Dan Gerber, Chair of the Torts, Insurance & Compensation Law Section - New York State Bar Association

Please be advised that the Torts, Insurance & Compensation Law Section of the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) is sponsoring a Law Student article writing contest for the Torts, Insurance & Compensation Law Journal. The winner of this contest will have his/her article printed in the Torts, Insurance & Compensation Law Journal and win $250, plus a free admission to the NYSBA annual meeting in January.

The subject of the article must be about recent changes to New York Insurance Law § 3420 and how the other states across the country apply the issue of prejudice to insurance companies who seek to disclaim coverage for late notice of claims. On July 21, 2008, New York Governor David Paterson signed into law Chapter 388 of the Laws of New York 2008. This legislation contains amendments to §3420 of New York's Insurance Law and §3001 of the New York Civil Practice Law and Rules that, among other things, changes New York law on late notice of insurance claims from a “no prejudice” standard to a standard which requires insurance companies to show prejudice. The article should contemplate what will constitute prejudice in New York.

The deadline for entries is November 30, 2008. All submissions are to be sent in Microsoft Word via e-mail to either Paul Edelman at pedelman@kreindler.com or David Glazer at DGlazer@shaferglazer.com.

Thank you for you assistance. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Paul Edelman or David Glazer at the email addresses listed above.

October 20, 2008

New York Court of Appeals Recently Addressed at Oral Argument Certified Question Regard Insurance Policy's Notice Provision

The New York Court of Appeals recently addressed at oral argument the following certified question in Briggs Avenue LLC v. Insurance Corp. of Hanover.  Here is the issue:

When an injured party begins its suit against an insured by serving process on the Secretary of State, who, under New York corporate and limited liability company law, is the insured's agent for such service, does this service suffice to trigger the provisions in the relevant insurance policy that require the insured to inform its insurer in a timely manner that a suit has been brought, where: (a) the insurance policy does not expressly refer to notice that a suit has been brought being (a) the insurance policy does not expressly refer to notice that a suit has been brought being given to an insured's "representative" rather than the insured itself, and (b) the insured plausibly argues that - due to its failure to update its address with the Secretary of State - it had not received actual notice that the suit had been brought?

Briggs Avenue LLC, the owner of an apartment building at 2570 Briggs Avenue in the Bronx, was informed when part of the ceiling in one of the apartments fell down in May 2003, but apparently it was not informed that Nelson Bonilla, the son of the tenant, had been injured.  Briggs did not notify its liability insurer, Insurance Corporation of Hannover (ICH), of the incident.  When Bonilla filed a $2 million negligence suit against Briggs in July 2003, he served the complaint on New York's Secretary of State, who serves as Briggs's agent for service of process under New York law.  The Secretary of State forwarded copies of the complaint to the address it had on file for Briggs, but the company did not receive them.  Briggs had moved its office and failed to advise the Secretary of State of its new address. 

Briggs became aware of the lawsuit in late March or early April of 2004, when Bonilla moved for a default judgment and directly served the papers on Briggs at its new address.  Briggs then notified ICH of the lawsuit.  ICH disclaimed coverage, contending that Briggs violated the notification conditions of the policy by failing to notify ICH for eleven months after the ceiling fell and eight months after the suit was filed.  The policy required Briggs to notify ICH "as soon as practicable of an 'occurrence' or an offense which may result in a claim," notify it "as soon as practicable" when a suit is filed, and "immediately" send ICH any papers received in connection with a lawsuit.


About October 2008

This page contains all entries posted to Torts, Insurance and Compensation Law Weblog in October 2008. They are listed from oldest to newest.

September 2008 is the previous archive.

November 2008 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.