Florida Court of Appeals Permits Post-Loss Assignment of Benefits to Third Party

In Accident Cleaners, Inc. v. Universal Insurance Co., 2015 SL 1609973 (Fla. Ct.App. April 10, 2015) the Florida Court of Appeals, Fifth District held the assignee of benefits under an insurance policy was not required to have an insurable interest in the insured property at the time of loss. The court further held that so long as the assignor had an insurable interest in the insured property at the time of the loss, such insurable interest is imputed to the assignee.

The assignee was …

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Timing is Key in Determining Primary/Excess Obligations for Claims against Multiple Insureds

A recent Eleventh Circuit decision warns of the dangers in handling claims against multiple insureds. In Nova Casualty Co. v. OneBeacon America Insurance Co., (U.S. Ct. Apps., 11th Cir., Mar. 17, 2015) the district court for the Southern District of Florida granted summary judgment in favor of the primary insurer, finding that although it had breached its duty to defend and indemnify an additional insured in the underlying action, the excess insurer was not entitled to damages because the primary insurer had …

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Structural Damage Doesn’t Mean Any Damage to Structure

In Hegel v. First Liberty Insurance Corp., No. 14-10549, 2015 WL 821146 (11th Cir. Feb. 27, 2015), the Eleventh Circuit reversed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for the policyholder, finding that “structural damage” does not mean any “damage to the structure.”

The coverage dispute arose when the insurer First Liberty Insurance Corp. (“First Liberty”) denied the policyholders’ claim for a “sinkhole loss” which their homeowner’s insurance policy defined as “structural damage to the building, including the foundation, caused by sinkhole …

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