It is not uncommon for insurance companies to argue that company documents, such as claims manuals and guidelines, are trade secrets and worthy of a protective order. This is nonsense.
It is not breaking news that attorneys retained by insurance companies to adjust claims are susceptible to discovery, including depositions. Indeed, I have blogged about that in the past. This post discusses a recent decision out of the United States District Court of Arizona broadening the discovery susceptibility of carrier attorneys.1
Part 4 of this blog series touched upon insurance companies trying to get social media information, such as Facebook, through discovery.1 I am witnessing an increased effort by insurance companies to obtain social media information during litigation, and thought it worthwhile to expand on the subject.
Carriers all too often request income tax returns from policyholders without any explanation as to how such information is relevant to the disposition of the claim. Such unsubstantiated requests do not fly, at least according to the United States District Court of South Dakota.1
Carriers typically argue against divulging information pertaining to the underwriting of a particular risk and/or company underwriting standards or guidelines.1 I believe the information should be provided to the insured, and so too says a Middle District of Florida trial court.2
Once upon a time in a far away land (South Dakota), a policyholder by the name of Mark Lillibridge purchased a builder’s risk policy from Nautilus Insurance Company in conjunction with the remodeling of his home. In the wake of a hailstorm that caused significant damage to his home, Lillibridge expected Nautilus to handle his claim expeditiously and with his best interests in mind. Lillibridge was let down by Nautilus and ultimately waged bad faith litigation against the carrier in the United States District Court of South Dakota.1
In the Olin Corp. case,1 one of Olin Corporation’s (“Olin”) three carriers admitted only a small amount of liability and the other two delayed making a coverage decision. So, Olin filed suit in federal court against all three, seeking entry of a declaratory judgment that it was entitled to coverage.
The first three posts in this blog series addressed the kind of discovery an insured can obtain from an insurer, and prospective posts will also do so. This post, however, addresses limitations on an insurer’s discovery, namely an insurer’s social networking discovery.
Though the procedural history of the All Moving Services decision1 was somewhat unusual, there are still valuable lessons to be learned. I now discuss a few such lessons.
Over five years ago, I had a hand in the motion practice that led to the lovely Viking Yacht Co. discovery order that is the focus of this post.1 So, in addition to discussing the order, I will share some snippets from the briefing that was at play.