Scott Seaman Discusses Decision by NY Court to Reject 'Unavailability of Insurance' Exception

March 30, 2018

Hinshaw's Scott Seaman—a Chicago-based partner and co-chair of the firm's Insurance Services Practice Group—is quoted in a Law360 article titled "NY Ruling Curtails Insurers' Environmental Cleanup Exposure." The article discusses Tuesday's unanimous decision by the New York Court of Appeals to reject the application of a "so-called unavailability exception to the pro rata insurance allocation formula," often referenced in long-tail insurance coverage matters. The decision will limit "carriers' exposure to cleanup coverage claims by forcing policyholders to pick up the tab for such periods."

"The New York Court of Appeals slammed the door shut on policyholders seeking to hoist upon their insurers losses for periods in which insurance is unavailable in the marketplace, delivering a significant victory to insurers in the allocation war," said Seaman, characterizing the unavailability exception as "utter lunacy."

Read "NY Ruling Curtails Insurers' Environmental Cleanup Exposure," on the Law360 website (subscription may be required)

Also read Seaman's article discussing this decision: "Expert Analysis: New York Court of Appeals Slams Door on 'Unavailability of Insurance' Exception"

Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP is a U.S. based law firm with offices in 11 states and London. The firm's national reputation spans the insurance industry, the professional services sector—including representation of law firms and lawyers—and other highly regulated industries, such as banking and finance and the debt collection sector. Hinshaw also provides a series of closely coordinated litigation, business advisory and transactional services to clients of all sizes as well as governmental and public sector entities.