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Weekly Caselaw Updates

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Vitamin Energy, LLC v. Evanston Ins. Co.

The Third Circuit vacated the District Court's order, which ruled that the insurance company did not have to defend the company it insured. Vitamin Energy, LLC, obtained a policy from Evanston Insurance and was subsequently sued by a competitor for publishing certain comparative claims and infringing the 5-hour Energy mark…

Vitamin Energy, LLC v. Evanston Ins. Co.
3rd Circuit

The Third Circuit vacated the District Court’s order, which ruled that the insurance company did not have to defend the company it insured. Vitamin Energy, LLC, obtained a policy from Evanston Insurance and was subsequently sued by a competitor for publishing certain comparative claims and infringing the 5-hour Energy mark in advertising and packaging. The… Continue reading Vitamin Energy, LLC v. Evanston Ins. Co.

Evans v. Capital Blue Cross
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court reversed the trial court’s order, which granted summary judgment. Capital Blue Cross (“CBC”) employed Evans. CBC provided its employees with short-term disability benefits under its Salary Continuation Benefit Plan (“the Program”), which was described in a summary plan description (“SPD”). Evans timely applied for shortterm disability benefits under the Program, and… Continue reading Evans v. Capital Blue Cross

Cooper Hosp. Univ. Med. Ctr. v. Selective Ins. Co. of America
New Jersey Supreme Court

The New Jersey Supreme Court had to decide who must pay the medical bills for a person who was injured in a car crash in 1977. At the time of the accident, the motorist had an insurance policy that provided him with unlimited personal-injury-protection (PIP) benefits. But the crash left him paralyzed from the waist… Continue reading Cooper Hosp. Univ. Med. Ctr. v. Selective Ins. Co. of America

Kramer v. Nationwide Prop. and Cas. Ins. Co.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the trial court’s decision, which ordered Nationwide to provide a defense to the parents in an underlying action concerning a young man’s death. The Kramers’ son hosted the decedent in the Kramers’ home while they were out of town. The decedent was found dead, and a coroner determined that the… Continue reading Kramer v. Nationwide Prop. and Cas. Ins. Co.

Noga v. Fulton Fin. Emp. Benefit Plan
3rd Circuit

The Third Circuit affirmed the District Court’s order that retroactively reinstated the plaintiff’s The Third Circuit held that an insurance company engaged in “procedural irregularities” when it used outside medical experts to overrule its in-house medical experts and terminated the participant’s disability benefits. The Court further held that those procedural irregularities aligned closely with the… Continue reading Noga v. Fulton Fin. Emp. Benefit Plan

State v. Cnty. of Ocean
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division ruled that the State must defend counties under the Tort Claims Act but cannot designate who shall bear the cost of indemnity. A county detective was involved in a car crash with a civilian who sued the county for negligence. Under the Tort Claims Act, the Attorney General may: 1.)… Continue reading State v. Cnty. of Ocean

Wilmington Sav. Fund Soc’y v. Daw
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division answered the question: “If a loan agreement states the lender may choose to apply the funds to the outstanding debt if either repairs are economically infeasible or if such expenditures would impair the lender’s security interest, does the lender have an obligation to the borrower to make that decision promptly… Continue reading Wilmington Sav. Fund Soc’y v. Daw

Rush v. Erie Ins. Exch.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court issued a critical ruling on an issue of first impression regarding underinsured motorist coverage. A detective was injured while driving his patrol car. The insurance companies for the municipality and the other motorists paid out the total amount of the policy. The detective then sought additional compensation from his insurance carrier… Continue reading Rush v. Erie Ins. Exch.

Franks v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

This case presented the Pennsylvania Superior Court with a matter of first impression: Whether the removal of a vehicle from an auto insurance policy providing non-stacked UIM coverage for three vehicles constituted the “purchase” of coverage as contemplated by section 1738(c) of the Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Laws (MVFRL), such that the insured must be… Continue reading Franks v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co.

Dianoia’s Eatery. LLC v. Motorists Mutual Ins. Co.
3rd Circuit

Insurance coverage and coronavirus were at the core of this case. In these consolidated appeals, three restaurants sued in state court seeking a declaration that their respective insurer was obligated to provide coverage for COVID-19-related losses. Each insurer removed its case to federal court, invoking diversity jurisdiction. Then, each District Court exercised its discretion under… Continue reading Dianoia’s Eatery. LLC v. Motorists Mutual Ins. Co.