SDV Insights

Hospitality Insights

McDonald's Scores COVID-19 Victory Against GL Insurer - Policyholders are "Lovin' It"

In a significant victory for policyholders, the Northern District of Illinois has found a duty to defend under a commercial general liability ("CGL") policy for damages related to COVID-19. In reaching this decision, the court made several significant findings regarding the scope and interpretation of "damages," "because of," and "bodily injury" in the context of general liability coverage.

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Event Cancellation Dispute "Scheduled" for Federal Court Ruling

Emerald Holding Inc. ("Emerald"), a leading operator of business-to-business trade show events across the United States, has suffered millions of dollars in losses from canceled or postponed in-person events in order to comply with health and safety government mandates due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

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Testing the Limits: 124 Cases of Food Poisoning Over a Four-day Period Ruled a Single Occurrence

On November 4, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, San Antonio Division ruled that 124 separate cases of food poisoning at the Pasha Mediterranean Grill restaurant over a four-day period arose out of a single occurrence.

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COVID-19 Win for Policyholders! Court Approves "Direct Physical Loss" Argument

A Missouri federal district court recently provided a significant victory for insurance policyholders for COVID-19 losses. In Studio 417, Inc. v. The Cincinnati Insurance Company 6:20-cv-03127-SRB (W.D. MO, So. Div., Aug. 12, 2020), the Court was called upon to decide whether allegations involving the presence of COVID-19 in and around physical structures qualifies as "direct physical loss or damage" to covered property.

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Hotel's Excess Insurer Escapes Liability as "Following-Form" Coverage Excludes Claim

Many policyholders assume that "following form" excess liability coverage will be available, if needed, above the primary policy's limits. This assumption should never replace the true measure of determining coverage--reading the policy.

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Event Cancellation Insurance During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Key Strategies

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an unprecedented number of event cancellations ranging from travel and tourism, hotel and hospitality, corporate conferences, outdoor festivals, as well as many other events. By far, one of the largest industries impacted by COVID-19 is the hospitality industry.

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French Laundry Spices Up COVID-19 Business Interruption Debate

On March 26, 2020, Michelin-rated Napa Valley restaurants, French Laundry and Bouchon Bistro, and their celebrity chef, Thomas Keller, filed the second known coronavirus-related declaratory judgment (DJ) lawsuit by a restaurant. The restaurants filed their DJ against Hartford Fire Insurance Company just seven days after Napa County issued a Shelter at Home Order.

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