Scott Seaman Discusses "Beginning of the End" for Policyholder COVID-19 Business Interruption Claims
*Update: Seaman's remarks were quoted in a CAC Specialty blog post titled "Recent Court Decisions Affecting Insurers."
Scott Seaman, the Chicago-based co-chair of Hinshaw's global Insurance Services Practice Group, discussed in a recent Law360 article a landmark insurance coverage ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Court. In Verveine Corp. et al. v. Strathmore Insurance Co. et al, the court ruled the insurer did not owe coverage to policyholder restaurants for business losses caused by government shutdown orders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Seaman noted that in an environment in which it seems insurers are facing potentially higher liability claims, more plaintiff-friendly courts and contracts, the stack of court decisions rejecting coverage in pandemic cases is striking: "[t]he shutout by insurers at this point is somewhat remarkable in this age of social inflation on steroids," he said.
A day after the Strathmore ruling, the Iowa Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that denied business interruption claims filed by a country club and restaurant.
Read the full Law360 article (subscription required)
"Mass. Virus Ruling Sounds Death Knell, Insurance Attys Say" was published by Law360 on April 22, 2022.
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