Articles by Steven Plitt

image of Steven Plitt Steven Plitt is the current successor author to Couch on Insurance, 3d. He maintains a national coverage practice with The Cavanagh Law Firm. He has been listed continuously as one of Arizona's 50 lawyers by Southwest Super Lawyers. He can be reached splitt@cavanaghlaw.com. To read additional articles by Steven Plitt, go to www.insuranceexpertplitt.com.

Washington Court Further Clarifies Defense Counsel’s Role in ROR Defense

The Washington Court of Appeals recently found (Arden v. Forsberg & Umlauf, P.S., 193 Wash.App. 731, 373 P.3d 320 (2016)), on first impression, that insurer retained attorneys (defense attorneys) were not automatically prohibited from representing insureds merely because the defense …

Montana Courts Finds That Falling Boulders Constitute ‘Earth Movement’ for Purposes of Policy Exclusion

The Montana Supreme Court in Parker v. Safeco Ins. Co. of America, 384 Mont. 125, 2016 MT 173, 376 P.3d 114 (2016), held that an earth movement exclusion was not limited solely to damages caused by soil movement. The Court …

No Exceptions: Wisconsin Supreme Court Upholds Four Corners Rule

The Wisconsin Supreme Court eliminates any doubt that there is no exception to the four-corners rule in duty to defend cases in Wisconsin. In a split decision, the Wisconsin Supreme Court in Water Well Solutions Service Group, Inc. v. Consolidated …

Liquidated Judgment Not Necessary for Equitable Subrogation

California’s Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals finds that the absence of a litigated judgment did not preclude an equitable subrogation claim from being brought by an excess insurer for bad faith failure to settle when the excess insurer actually contributed …

Set-up on Failure to Defend Rejected in Florida

In a surprising decision, a Federal District Court, applying Florida law, granted summary judgment to an insurance company on a “failure to settle” claim because the insured’s liability was not clear. Florida is a testing ground for creative lawyering designed …

Failure to Re-Evaluate is Bad Faith

In a self-evident decision, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an insurance company’s failure to re-evaluate a case value after the trial court eliminated a key affirmative defense justified a bad faith failure to settle verdict. The …

Pro Rata Allocation Comes to Louisiana

In Daniel Arceneaux, et al. v. Amstar Corp., et al., 2015-0588 (La. 9/7/16), 2016 WL 4699163 (La. 9/7/16), the Louisiana Supreme Court held that in long latency disease cases the cost of the duty to defend should be prorated between …

Notice-Prejudice Rule Adopted in Wyoming

The Wyoming Supreme Court in Century Surety Co. v. Jim Hipner, LLC, 2016 WY 81, 377 P.3d 784 (2016), engaged in a jurisprudential review of the enforceability of non-prejudicial notice requirements in insurance policies and why courts have moved away …

Is Advertising Injury in the Bag?

Is advertising injury in the bag? In a recent decision the United States Second Circuit Court Of Appeals found that the sale of counterfeit branded goods was not covered as advertising injury. In United States Fidelity & Guaranty Co. v. …

Florida High Court Clarifies Uninsured Motorist Bad Faith Principles

The Florida Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling that the determination of the full extent of damages in an uninsured motorist bad faith case should be adjudicated in the subsequent bad faith lawsuit rather than in the UM …