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Florida court rules that auto insurer cannot invoke exceptions to the Eight Corners Rule to avoid duty to defend visibly drunk driver
A liability insurer’s duty to defend a third-party lawsuit in Florida is triggered when the complaint against the insured alleges facts that potentially bring the action within the policy’s coverage grant. Like courts in other jurisdictions, Florida courts generally apply the eight corners rule that restricts the court’s analysis of the issue to the terms in the four corners of the policy and the allegations inside the four corners of the complaint.
Insurers facing increased exposure to Florida bad faith claims in recent years received some relief with the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in Heather Eres v. Progressive American Insurance Co., No. 20-11006 (11th Cir. June 1, 2021). The Eleventh Circuit affirmed summary judgment for Progressive American Insurance Company. In doing so, the court found that Progressive did not act in bad faith toward its insured in attempting to settle Heather Eres’s bodily injury claim.
Kennedys is growing its London team with the hire of three partners from the BLM catastrophic injury team, Antony French, Anthony Rawlins and Deirdre Burgess. They will also be joined by six associates and a litigation assistant from BLM.
Case review 2021-05-21
In this recent case the claimant pedestrian was held wholly accountable for a road traffic accident. The decision reiterates that notwithstanding the high duty of care owed to vulnerable road users by motorists, being a vulnerable road user is not on its own sufficient to succeed in a claim in negligence in respect of a road traffic accident.
Kennedys has promoted ten lawyers to its partnership. Four of those promoted are based in the UK, with six in the US. Kennedys’ worldwide partner count is now 280.
The new rules allow an insurer 30 working days to make a decision regarding liability. If no decision is forthcoming they are deemed to admit liability and where liability is denied in part or in full they will need to provide their policyholder’s version of events. This must set out exactly why liability is disputed and must be supported by a statement of truth.
What a few weeks it’s been since the long awaited whiplash reforms finally gathered some momentum again. When the rules first landed in my inbox, I remember thinking finally we have some light at the end of the tunnel but that clarity was short-lived as we delved deeper into the rules, engaging with colleagues and clients alike to consider the potential areas of friction.
In a letter to stakeholders yesterday, the Department of Justice announced a significant development relating to the review of the personal injury discount rate in Northern Ireland.
Blog 2021-03-25With the new Official Injury Claim (OIC) portal launching soon, and operating alongside the existing MoJ portal, there will necessarily be a new layer of complexity for claims teams to consider.
Another week of whiplash reforms and the picture is perhaps no clearer than a week ago.