SDV Insights

When Are General Conditions and General Requirements Covered by Builder's Risk

General conditions and general requirements are terms of art in the construction industry that describe the indirect costs necessary to complete a construction project. After physical loss or damage to a project, the following question often arises: Are "general conditions" and "general requirements" covered under a builder's risk policy?

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Even Sophisticated Policyholders Can Miss a Simple Claims Notice Requirement

Following the basic notice requirements to provide timely and adequate notice of a claim contained in all insurance policies seems elemental to triggering an insurer's duty to defend a policyholder. However, even sophisticated insureds can sometimes miss the simple notice provisions in their policies

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Whose Burden is It Anyway: All Risk vs. Covered Peril Policies

First-party insurance coverage is typically structured on the basis of one of two types of insuring agreements: "All Risks" and "Covered Peril." While the difference may seem innocuous, the ramifications of having one versus the other can be monumentally important in a disputed claim scenario. For the reasons discussed in this article, we recommend that, in almost every situation, the insured should aim to secure an "all risks" policy form.

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Contra Proferentem: Haunting Insurers for Years to Come

Contra proferentem is one of the few Latin phrases that lawyers remember from law school, in the ranks with res ipsa loquitur, prima facie, and ipso facto. Contra proferentem literally means "against the offeror" and the doctrine is used when courts interpret ambiguous contract language.

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Important Insurance Alert for Out-of-State Contractors Assisting in Florida Recovery Efforts! 

SDV is sending out this important notice for all out-of-state contractors to contact their workers' compensation brokers and insurers to ensure their out-of-state workers' compensation policy will cover workers in Florida. The state of Florida does not recognize the "All States Endorsement" on workers' compensation policies, and in some instances could potentially result in out-of-state contractors being without coverage in the State of Florida.

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Can a Lease Force a Tenant's Insurer to Defend the Landlord?

Can an indemnification clause in a commercial lease obligate a tenant's insurer to defend a landlord? Recently, the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York said, "Yes!" On August 9, 2022, the district court issued a decision in ConMed Corp. vs. Federal Insurance Company, holding that the indemnification clause in a policyholder's lease triggered the insurer's duty to defend the landlord in an action arising out of the tenant's negligence.

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Is New Jersey's Unfair Claim Settlement Practices Act Obsolete?

Most states have some version of an Unfair Claim Settlement Practices Act (UCSPA), which is intended to prohibit insurers from engaging in unfair claims settlement practices. While the UCSPA is based off a model act, there are differences from state to state. For example, New Jersey's UCSPA does not allow a private cause of action against an insurer - instead, the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance retains sole enforcement authority under the UCSPA.

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What is Contractual Risk Transfer?

Every commercial property owner, developer, general contractor, subcontractor, and vendor should understand the concept of contractual risk transfer and how it might affect its company and projects.

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Ninth Circuit Decides in Favor of Life Insurance Beneficiary in DUI Accidental Death Claim

In the case of Wolf v. Life Insurance Company of North America, 2022 WL 3652966, (9th Cir. August 25, 2022), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the determination of the district court agreeing that the tragic death of a young man was an "accident" as defined under an accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) policy.

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The Ups and Downs of Elevator Maintenance Contractor's Policy Limits

The December 2021 First Department decision in Nouveau Elevator Indus. v. New York Marine & General Ins. Co. is pushing some buttons in the elevator industry, given the significant implications it may have on the adequacy of policy limits for elevator service companies operating in New York state.

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