Tag Archives: Illinois

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Weighs In On “Matching”

Last year in one of my blogposts, I wrote about Windridge of Naperville Condominium Association v. Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company,1 and the issue whether appraisal is appropriate to resolve a dispute over the cost of repairing physically undamaged siding of townhome buildings to remedy a mismatch with repaired damaged siding. There, a federal district court … Continue Reading

Best Insurance Lawyers in Chicago?

Mike Duffy, Ed Eshoo, and Christina Phillips head up Merlin Law Group’s Chicago office. As far as I am concerned, they are the best insurance lawyers in Chicago, and we are very lucky to have them hitching their stars to the Merlin Law Group wagon.… Continue Reading

Where There Is Smoke, There Is… A Denial

An Illinois Public Insurance Adjuster recently contacted me regarding an insurer’s denial of a smoke damage claim. The facts were as follows. While a condominium unit owner was using the fireplace in the unit (“unit 1”), smoke began to fill up in the condominium unit above (“unit 2”). The condominium association made a claim to … Continue Reading

Insurance Company’s Long Duration of Negotiations and Stalling Tactics Supports Plaintiff’s Claim for “Bad Faith”

Illinois’ solution to an insurance company’s delay, deny and defend tactics is section 155 of the Illinois Insurance Code, which provides an extra-contractual remedy to policyholders whose insurer’s refusal to recognize liability and pay a claim under a policy is vexatious and unreasonable.1 Section 155 of the Code is intended to aid the insured and … Continue Reading

Buyer Beware: Negligence Claims Against Your Agent May Arise On The Day You Get Your Policy!

The Illinois Supreme Court recently overturned the Court of Appeals’ decision in American Family Mut. Ins. Co. v. Krop, 82 N.E. 3d 533, 2017 IL App (1st) 161071 (Ill. App. 2017). As discussed in my post on June 14, 2017, the Illinois Appellate Court had concluded that the insured’s claim against their agent for negligent … Continue Reading

Is a “Matching” Dispute Appropriate for Appraisal? – Update

Last year in one of my blogposts, I wrote about Windridge of Naperville Condominium Association v. Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company, and the issue whether appraisal is appropriate to resolve a dispute over the cost of repairing physically undamaged siding of townhome buildings to remedy a mismatch with repaired damaged siding. There, a federal district court … Continue Reading

Allstate’s 180-Day Dwelling Replacement Requirement Trumped by the Illinois Standard Fire Policy

Under the powers vested by sections 397 and 401 of the Illinois Insurance Code, the Director of Insurance has promulgated certain regulations which provide for a Standard Fire Policy.1 Under the regulations, all fire insurance policies must “conform to such form of the Standard [Fire] Policy or, if another form is used, shall for the … Continue Reading

Standard Fire Insurance Policies Still Provide Basic Protections—A Major Victory for Policyholders and Merlin Law Group

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeal’s opinion this week in Streit v. Metropolitan Casualty Insurance Company,1 is a major victory for policyholders in Illinois. There, the Seventh Circuit affirmed the lower court judgment entered in favor of my clients, Wesley and Barbara Streit, arising out of Metropolitan’s failure to cover a fire loss to their … Continue Reading

When Must a Negligence Claim Be Brought Against an Illinois Insurance Producer?

Section 13-214.4 of the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure provides that “[a]ll causes of action brought by any person or entity under any statute or any legal or equitable theory against an insurance producer1 . . . concerning the sale, placement, procurement, renewal, cancellation of, or failure to procure any policy of insurance shall be … Continue Reading

The Scope of Appraisal in Illinois

The appraisal clause in a typical residential and commercial property insurance policy provides for an appraisal if the parties disagree as to “the amount of loss.”1 That phrase has been the subject of extensive legal debate between insureds and insurers in terms of its meaning and scope. While most courts have concluded that ascertaining the … Continue Reading

Payment of an Appraisal Award Does Not Foreclose Insured’s Claim for Vexatious and Unreasonable Conduct in Illinois

Often an insurer will assert that their payment of an appraisal award has satisfied their obligation under the policy such that an action for “bad faith” cannot be brought. An insurer recently raised this issue in a motion to dismiss against our client arguing that the insured’s right to bring a claim for damages under … Continue Reading

“Commencing” Deemed Ambiguous in Property Insurance Policy

A federal District Court in Illinois has determined that the term “commencing” is ambiguous in a property insurance policy that provides coverage for “loss or damage commencing [d]uring the policy period…[w]ithin the…United States of America.”1 At issue in Temperature Service Company, Inc. v. Acuity, was whether property damage, that began before the policy period, but … Continue Reading

Using a Motion in Limine to Exclude Evidence of Prior Fires or Prior Insurance Claims

Motions in limine are commonly used to seek a pre-trial ruling regarding excluding inadmissible or prejudicial evidence. At the federal level, Federal Rules of Evidence (“FRE”) 103(d) and 104(c),1 402,2 403,3 and 611(a)4 and Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (“FRCP”) 16(c)5 provide the underlying bases for in limine motions, though the power to rule on … Continue Reading

Illinois Courts Follow the “Prevention of Performance” Doctrine

Homeowner and commercial property insurance policies typically limit an insured’s recovery to actual cash value1 benefits unless and until the damaged or destroyed property is repaired or replaced. This limitation becomes an issue if coverage is declined and the insurer fails to pay actual cash value benefits as “seed money” to start the repair/replacement process. … Continue Reading
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