Tag Archives: causation

Court Applies Broad Interpretation of “Direct” Causation

Plaintiffs owned a home in Arizona insured by Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company.1 The “Wallow Fire” occurred near the property and consumed the plaintiffs’ detached garage. It also burned the vegetation on a nearby hill. A month after the fire was contained, a mudslide on the hill destroyed the house.… Continue Reading

The Scope of Appraisal Part 6: Indiana

Earlier this month, a federal judge sitting in the Southern District of Indiana examined the scope of the appraisal clause in the property insurance policy. Relying on many of the same cases I have discussed in earlier blogs in this series, the court found that the appraisal panel must consider causation as part of the … Continue Reading

The Scope of Appraisal: Does It Include Causation?

While the appraisal procedure is commonly used in property insurance claims, the proper scope of appraisal is often contested. Courts across the country generally agree that coverage determinations are reserved only to the courts. However, courts are divided on whether determinations of causation should be considered by the appraisal process.… Continue Reading

Reasonable Expectations – Why New Jersey Policyholders Should Have a Thankful Christmas Day

"There’s a great deal of suffering in the world, Sir. We ought to do our part toward relieving it."1 New Jersey policyholders who have not been fully paid their insurance benefits following losses from Hurricane Sandy should have some optimism and hope this Christmas Eve. Their reasonable expectations of insurance coverage and benefits are solidly … Continue Reading

Does my insurance Policy cover this? Understanding The Proximate Causation Doctrine-Part 1

Every policyholder’s first question after a loss is: does my insurance policy cover this? Some policyholders have a named peril policy insuring against certain risks that are enumerated within the policy itself. Others have an all-risk policy that insures against every peril that is not specifically excluded under the terms of the policy. Regardless of … Continue Reading

Concurrent Causation in Texas

The law of comparative causation under property insurance policies is reasonably settled in Texas. If there is a loss as a result of two concurring perils, one insured and one not, the loss is covered only to the extent it can be traced to the covered peril. However, what happens when a peril which is … Continue Reading

Texas Insurance Causation Doctrine “Is What It Is” And It Needs to Be Changed

While writing last week’s post, Texas Windstorm Insurer Settles 2,400 Hurricane Ike Slab Claims, I almost quoted Texas attorney Steve Mostyn, who explained that Texas law really left no other rational choice. Burdens of proof are crucial when it comes to close cases, and Texas places a unique and difficult coverage burden on policyholders. An … Continue Reading

Does an Insurance Policy Cover Only “Loss” or “Damage” to Property?

Property insurance policies are written in complex language. The fact that there are so many different interpretations and disputes about the language by some very bright people is probably enough evidence to prove that point. David Rossmiller wrote a post, Corban v. USAA: A few (more) words about anti-concurrent causation, which had me thinking about words … Continue Reading

Florida and Texas Courts Have a Slightly Different View of Insurance Causation Burdens of Proof: Part I

Since last May, just before we opened our Houston office, I have been reviewing and pondering causation and burdens of proof found in Texas insurance cases. While writing yesterday’s post regarding sinkhole coverage cases, I came across two Florida cases that demonstrate Florida’s view that policyholders truly have minimal proof requirements coverage under all-risk property insurance … Continue Reading

Mississippi Insurance Department Finds State Farm Wrongdoing But Not With Evil Intent

The Mississippi Department of Insurance finally issued its report regarding State Farm’s claims handling following Hurricane Katrina. The findings were long and will undoubtedly be subject to criticism and interpretation. I am certain State Farm publicists will try to undermine the Rigsby sisters’ claims even more since the report essentially concluded that their assertions were unsubstantiated. … Continue Reading

Hurricane Ike is going be similar to Ivan and Katrina

Wind versus flood. Insurance companies will use causation to deny claims just as they did in the hundreds of cases we litigated after Ivan and Katrina.  We will retain meteorologists and structural engineers as this issue  will be litigated in Texas and western Louisiana. Rimkus and Haag are located in Texas. I wonder how many outcome oriented reports … Continue Reading