A federal court in Pennsylvania has held that Liberty Mutual must defend its insured, Hershey Creamery Company, in an intellectual property infringement lawsuit because the suit raises claims that potentially implicate coverage under the policies’ personal and advertising injury coverages. The court further found that the alleged wrongful conduct was not subject to the policies’ IP infringement exclusion.
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Brick and mortar retailers are rapidly diversifying checkout and payment methods to combat the erosion of sales to online channels. From self-checkout kiosks, to store-specific mobile applications for payment, scan-as-you-go devices, and even ‘just walk out’ models, retailers are reinventing consumer’s notions of the traditional checkout line.
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Earlier this month, Canada’s transport minister announced that a drone had collided with a commercial aircraft, the first confirmed collision of its kind in North America. This recent incident, which many commentators believed was inevitable given the proliferation of consumer and commercial drones, highlights the potential risks associated with drone operations.
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An insured seeking coverage for credit card fees assessed against its third-party payment processor following a data breach recently filed an appeal in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Spec’s, a liquor store chain with over 160 locations throughout Texas, suffered two major data breaches of its credit card payment system, resulting in the loss

In an important decision, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that an employer’s liability exclusion does not preclude coverage for claims brought by an employee of one insured against another insured. In a recent article in Lodging Magazine, Hunton & Williams LLP’s insurance coverage lawyers discuss the significance of the Second Circuit’s ruling.
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The Ninth Circuit will decide whether Great Lakes Reinsurance must defend clothing company, In and Out, against a trademark infringement suit by Forever 21. The dispute focuses on exclusionary language in the general liability policy issued by Great Lakes to In and Out, which broadly bars coverage for claims stemming from violations of intellectual property rights, but which also excepts from the exclusion claims for copyright, trade dress and slogan infringement occurring in the company’s advertisements.
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In late May 2017, the American Law Institute met to approve the Proposed Final Draft of the first ever Restatement of the Law, Liability Insurance—the culmination of over seven years of work on this project. Not surprisingly, many of the issues discussed in the Restatement have been hotly contested by insurers. The proposed Restatement is important for retail industry insureds because courts around the country may look to this new Restatement in ruling on common insurance coverage disputes arising out of product liability actions, recalls and environmental contamination. For example, some of the most hotly debated sections of the proposed Restatement include, (1) policy interpretation principles, such as when a term is deemed ambiguous; (2) the standard for determining the insurer’s duty to defend; (3) the insurer’s duty to make reasonable settlement decisions; and (4) the allocation of liability in long-tail environmental claims.
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Many retailers today face an increasing risk related to product recalls, which can result in extensive losses and a variety of liability claims. Hunton and Williams LLP’s Insurance Coverage attorneys recently authored an article in which they address New York law on rescission and steps that can be taken to avoid rescission. This blog post contains a link to the full article.
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In the context of product recalls, the exact cause of damage or contamination may be unknown. This creates uncertainty, and in turn, a coverage dispute over whether the cause of damage is covered under the policy. In a recent article, Hunton attorneys analyze three recent cases involving coverage for retail industry insureds where the courts found the cause of loss to constitute an “occurrence,” triggering the policy’s coverage.
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