Skip to Content

Insurance, Risk Management, and Title Insurance

  •     New Insurance Case:  Owners’ Insurance Barred in Reimbursement Action against Tenant. Lesson:  Properly Specifying Insureds Can Avoid Costly Disputes and Litigation. The Western Heritage Ins. Co. v. Frances Todd, Inc. (2019 Cal.App. LEXIS 299 / 2019 WL 1450731) case has potential implications for insurance carriers, policyholders, condominium associations, unit owners, landlords and tenants.  The case involves a fire at a commercial condominium complex (the “Association”).  The Association’s CC&Rs required the Association to purchase a master fire insurance policy for the benefit of the Association and owners, with a waiver of subrogation endorsement that stated the insurance company could not seek […]

  • In DeSaulles v. Community Hospital (March 10, 2016) case no. S219236, the Supreme Court has weighed in with what it calls a “default” rule regarding which party may be entitled to costs when an action is dismissed by way of settlement. Such a “default” rule in effect overturns the prior holding in Chinn v. KMR Property Management (2008) 166 Cal. App.4th 175, at 185–190. The settlement in Desaulles was made and put on the record during trial as a result of rulings by the Court and included a monetary payment plus the Defendant to prepare a Judgment of Dismissal with prejudice with respect to […]

  • HARTFORD CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY v. J.R. MARKETING, L.L.C., et al., (Aug. 10, 2015) 190 Cal.Rptr.3d 599, 2015 WL 4716917 The California Supreme Court ruled that Hartford Casualty Insurance Co. can bring a direct action against Squire Patton Boggs LLP to recover some of the $13.5 million it paid the law firm as independent counsel under C.C. Section 2860 (Cumis) to defend its insured against claims that it stole business from a former employer. In Buss v. Superior Court (1997) 16 Cal.4th 35 the Court held that an insurer who must defend the entire action even if some claims are not-covered may reserve […]

  • Joseph M. Giden, Esq. (October 26, 1933 -September 17, 2014) It is with great sadness that the law firm of Gibbs Giden Locher Turner Senet & Wittbrodt LLP mourns the death of Joseph M. Giden, a founding partner of the firm and renowned litigator, counselor and mediator in the surety, title insurance and construction industry. He passed away after a brief illness on September 17, 2014, at the age of 80. “Joe Giden was my partner and colleague for more than 25 years, but more importantly he was my friend for more than 55 years,” said Ken Gibbs, co-founder of […]

  • By Michael B. Geibel, Esq. With facts shockingly reminiscent of egregious conduct criticized thirty years ago in Betts v. Allstate Ins. Co. (1984) 154 Cal.App.3d 688, a court in Massachusetts recently excoriated AIG Claims Services, Inc. for its bad faith handling of a personal injury lawsuit by finding that AIG hired defense counsel to fabricate a version of the accident that did not happen, improperly coached witnesses to support that version, suppressed recorded statements from the same witnesses which contradicted the version offered at trial, and then filed a meritless appeal. See, Odin Anderson v. American International Group, Inc., Superior Court Civil Action No. […]

  • JOHN CORENBAUM v. DWIGHT LAMPKIN  Court of Appeal Case # B236227  FILED: 4/30/13  May 7, 2013  California Court of Appeal in Corenbaum v Lampkin extends application of Hanif limitations to limit the admissibility of the full amount billed by a medical provider when a lesser amount is accepted as payment in full. The Court of Appeal issued its opinion in Corenbaum v Lampkin on April 30, 2013 interpreting and applying the California Supreme Court case of Howell v Hamilton Meats & Provision, Inc. (2011) 52 Cal. 4th 541. The Court in Corenbaum extended the principles of Hanif v. Housing Authority […]

  • Only the named insured can satisfy general liability insurance policy’s self-insured retention and trigger coverage Case: Forecast Homes, Inc. v. Steadfast Ins. Co. (2010) 181 Cal.App.4th 1466, 105 Cal.Rptr.3d 200 Digest Presented by Steven R. Cuneo, Jr., Esq. at the 17th Annual GGLTS Review Preview Seminar (2011) Key Points: 1) CGL policy prohibiting anyone other than the named insured from paying the policy’s self-insured retention is valid. 2) Policy language upheld, even though it had the practical effect of denying coverage to an additional insured. Digest: Housing developers, Forecast Homes, Inc., and K. Hovnanian Forecast Homes, Inc. (referred to collectively […]

  • CALIFORNIA CONSTRUCTION INDEMNITY AGREEMENTS CLARIFIED The California Supreme Court recently decided the case of Crawford v. Weather Shield Mfg., Inc., clarifying California law concerning indemnities in construction contracts. An indemnity provision generally requires one party to protect another party from claims, lawsuits or losses related to the contract or work on the project. Indemnity provisions usually encompass two distinct duties:   a duty to defend claims and lawsuits, and;   a duty to pay any ultimate judgment or settlement.  In Crawford, the Court held that the contractual indemnity at issue required the subcontractor providing the indemnity to provide an “up-front” defense […]