Louisiana federal courts have been split on the issue regarding the applicable prescriptive period (statute of limitation) for first-party insureds’ bad faith claims against their insurers. Recently, the Louisiana Supreme Court granted review of Smith v. Citadel Insurance Company, to definitively rule on the primary legal issue presented: “the proper prescriptive period applicable to a first-party bad faith claim against an insurer.”1
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On Saturday October 12, 2019, several decks of upper floors of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino under construction just off Canal Street in New Orleans suddenly collapsed. As emergency personnel were engaged in the immediate efforts to rescue and aid the crews working at the hotel site, the City of New Orleans was busy implementing its emergency response teams.
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Louisiana’s Department of Insurance, through its Commissioner, James J. Donelon, issued an Advisory Letter No. 2018-01 on June 18, 2018, to inform all property and casualty insurers how the separate named storm deductibles or hurricane deductibles are to be interpreted and applied to claims resulting from a subtropical storm named by the National Hurricane Center of the National Weather Service.
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Continuing with my nuts and bolts series on the statute of limitations, I’ve selected the boot of the Gulf Coast states, Louisiana. Louisiana has been hit hard in past years by the likes of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Ike, and other named wonders of weather. Due to the numerous claims made in recent years, Louisiana enacted special legislation to extend the limitations periods at times. The Louisiana legislature extended the time for instituting a judicial action against an insurer seeking recovery for property damages arising out of Hurricane Katrina to 1 September 2007, at the very latest, or forever be barred from doing so. The only exception the Legislature provided to the filing deadlines set forth in Acts 802 and 739 was if the contract or the parties (Acts 802) or the law (Act 739) provided for a later date for the filing of an action. With various Acts created to help claimants deal with losses, it’s important to make mental note of the Louisiana limitations.

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In a recent case, a Louisiana Court of Appeal decided, among other issues, what damages policyholders were entitled to in a Hurricane Katrina claim. That sounds like a typical scenario, however to add some spice to the mix, the policyholders had sold the property following the loss. The case is Jouve v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 2011 WL 3611800 (La. App. 4th Cir.).


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