We’ve all seen it before. The insured files a claim, the insurance company sends out an adjuster to adjust the loss, the loss is more complex, or a situation arises that the adjuster cannot handle so the insurance company forwards the claim to their legal department. At that point, an attorney becomes involved and the adjustment of the claim, as well as the communication between the parties is limited and calculated.
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Linda A. Lacewell, Superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services

Since the New York Department of Insurance was abolished in October 2011, the New York State Department of Financial Services has supervised and regulated all insurance companies that do business in New York. The Department of Financial Services attempts to ensure fair and equitable dealings between insurers, agents, and policyholders regarding all insurance transactions. The Department of Financial Services also receives and investigates all complaints against agents or insurers.
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The statute of limitations period applicable to a breach of contract cause of action in New York is ordinarily six years. However, parties to a contract may agree, in writing, that any lawsuit must be commenced within a shorter period of time. Moreover, while the statute of limitations on a breach of insurance contract generally starts to run on the date that coverage is disclaimed by the insurance company, the parties to an insurance contract are likewise free to include distinct language in their agreement demonstrating that they intend for the limitations period to run from the date of the underlying loss as opposed to the date of the disclaimer of coverage.
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The New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department “unanimously reversed, on the law, with costs, the motion denied and the claims reinstated,” the New York County Supreme Court trial judge’s order dated April 2, 2018, to the extent appealed from, which granted dismissal of Plaintiff D.K. Property, Inc.’s (“D.K.”) consequential damages (other than attorney’s fees) pled in its amended complaint.1 The dispute involves an “all-risk” commercial property policy issued by Defendant National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, PA (“National Union”) and its denial of D.K.’s October 2014 claim for policy proceeds and benefits arising from damage to one of its buildings insured under the policy.
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Tiffany Tower Condominium LLC sustained damages during Superstorm Sandy. In November 2012, the insured filed a claim with their insurer, Insurance Company of Greater New York, for damages sustained during the storm. Greater New York paid the claim out in December 2012. In September 2014, Tiffany Tower submitted a supplemental claim to Greater New York for additional losses which it asserted were caused by the storm. Their insurer denied coverage for the supplemental claim.
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Last month, a New York Supreme Court affirmed that insurance companies are subject to that state’s consumer protection law, General Business Law § 349. In 37 West 24th Street, LLC v. Seneca Insurance Company, Inc., the trial court denied Seneca Insurance Company’s motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s claim under that statute.1
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This weekend, I was binging on the Netflix show “The Defenders.” In one of the first episodes, an earthquake hits New York City and a character comments: “Not a lot of people have earthquake insurance up here.” This got me thinking about endorsements to policies, and how likely is it that an earthquake large enough to cause property damage will hit the tri-state area?
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