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  • Case review 30/03/2020

    Court finds coverage for violations of Biometric Privacy Act

    The Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, recently held that an insurer has a duty to defend an underlying class action lawsuit alleging violation of the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act 740 ILCS 14/1 et seq. (West 2014).  West Bend Mutual Insurance Co. v. Krishna Schaumburg Tan, Inc., 2020 IL App (1st) 191834 (March 20, 2020).  In this case of first impression, the court in Krishna Schaumburg Tan was asked to decide whether the allegations of the underlying complaint come within the insurance policies’ definition of “personal injury” and if so, whether an exclusion for violation of statutes applies to bar coverage.  Id. at *7-8.

  • Article 27/03/2020

    Coronavirus insurance claims may fail to meet threshold requirement for business interruption coverage

    As businesses lose income and incur unforeseen expenses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic that started in Wuhan, China and has taken hold in the United States, many companies will look to their businessowners or commercial property policies for relief. As they do so, one threshold question that will likely come up in jurisdictions across the country is whether COVID-19 losses constitute “direct physical loss” as that phrase is used in business interruption coverage grants. As discussed below, insurers will have strong arguments that COVID-19 losses do not meet that threshold requirement and that there is therefore no coverage for such claims.

  • Article 25/03/2020

    Employ the wrong litigation strategy and wave goodbye to arbitration

    In a recent decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a trial court’s denial of a defendant’s motion to compel arbitration finding that the party had waived the right to arbitrate.  In Brickstructures, Inc. v. Coaster Dynamix, Inc., ___ F.3d ___, Case No. 19-2187 (7th Cir. March 11, 2020), the Plaintiff brought suit against its former business partner alleging That Coaster Dynamix breached a joint venture agreement and its fiduciary duties and false advertising in violation of the Lantham Act.  Id. at *3.  Coaster Dynamix moved to dismiss the complaint pursuant to Federal Rule 12(b)(6). Arguing that the joint venture agreement was an unenforceable contract.  The trial court, however, dismissed the complaint on jurisdictional grounds.  Id.

  • Article 20/03/2020

    Delaware Supreme Court holds federal forum provisions valid and enforceable

    On March 20, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court in Cyan, Inc. v. Beaver County Employment Retirement Fund (“Cyan”) held that class actions under the Securities Act of 1933 (the “1933 Act”) may be brought in state court, and are not removable to federal court. What this means is that plaintiffs can and have been bringing class actions under Section 11 of the 1933 Act in both state and federal court.  This has resulted in procedural headaches and an increase in defense costs that have frustrated both policyholders and D&O insurers alike.

  • Article 19/03/2020

    Proposed COVID-19 legislation in New Jersey

    The COVID-19 global pandemic and the resulting efforts to contain it are events of unprecedented scale. New Jersey is among the states seeing the most comprehensive containment measures, including the shuttering of many non-essential businesses or modifying their operations in a manner that impacts their income stream. For instance, as of March 16, 2020, bars and restaurants can no longer offer “dine in” options and can now only operate by takeout or delivery.

  • Article 18/03/2020

    NJ Supreme Court upholds ruling on deemer statute

  • Article 17/03/2020

    Coronavirus and the looming question of business interruption coverage

    The coronavirus has grown from a handful of suspected pneumonia cases in Wuhan, China to a global pandemic. The rapid spread of the virus and the growing death toll have led to quarantines, emergency evacuations, business closures and travel bans in the United States and throughout the world. The ever increasing restrictions have resulted in business interruption losses in nearly every industry, ranging from large scale electronic manufacturing in China to small-town restaurants and retailers in the United States. As world-wide efforts to contain the virus grow, insurers must assess their potential exposure for business interruption claims.

  • Article 13/03/2020

    Nanette Lepore loses due to intellectual property exclusion

    The Second Circuit in a Summary Order has held, for the first time in the Circuit, that the “intellectual property” exclusion was clear and unambiguous and excluded coverage for a lawsuit that alleged infringement of intellectual property, in Lepore v. Hartford Fire Ins. Co., No. 19-778-cv, 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 3830 (2d Cir. Feb. 7, 2020). Although this opinion is non-precedential, the decision joins other circuits that have examined this exclusion, including the Third Circuit, in finding that this exclusion is enforceable notwithstanding the broad impact of the exclusionary language.

  • Article 13/03/2020

    “Dude, Where’s My Car?”: Federal Court in Pennsylvania issues reminder that causation is king

    In the 2000 film Dude, Where’s My Car? the primary characters wake up after a night of partying wondering what transpired the night before, or, as Ashton Kutcher said it best, “Dude, where’s my car?” In a recently decided matter in the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the court made it clear that a plaintiff can’t leave these types of questions unanswered and must be able to piece together the chain of events leading to an injury to sustain a cause of action.

  • News 03/03/2020

    Kennedys boosts Singapore practice with partner hire

    We are pleased to confirm that we have strengthened our Singapore litigation practice by hiring Glenn G. Cheng from K&L Gates Straits Law LLC. Glenn, who is dual-qualified at the Bar of England and Wales and admitted as an advocate and solicitor of Singapore, becomes the fifteenth partner in our growing Singapore office.