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Browning-Ferris's Expected Shakeup Didn't Go Quite As Expected

 

The National Labor Relations Board revised its definition of a joint employer in 2015, leading to a host of concerns from various businesses fearing expanding liability. The decision, commonly known as Browning-Ferris, survived multiple appeals and concerted lobbying of Congress. In the wake of the 2016 election, the revised joint employer rule seemed doomed, as the new administration seemed certain to revert to the old rule, considered friendlier to business owners.

Can Your Insurance Company Settle A Claim Without Your Consent?

 

The conflicting interests that may exist between an insured and their insurance company when it comes to the defense of a lawsuit have led courts to create rules to ensure everyone’s legal rights are respected.  These rules implicate issues like the insured’s right to hire their own attorney or the insurer’s ability to reserve their rights to avoid paying a judgment.  The conflicting interests can become particularly thorny when one party wishes to settle a case while the other objects to the settlement.

The Perilous Duty To Defend Manufacturers And Distributors Through The Opioid Crisis

  

As companies, states, workers compensation boards, and various federal government agencies grapple with the growing opioid epidemic, litigation against the pharmaceutical companies producing opioids for medical treatment has begun in earnest.  Multiple state governments have sued these companies alleging a host of legal violations, often centered around deceptive marketing claims.  These lawsuits have in turn caused a number of spin-off actions between insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies to determine the extent to which insurance companies have duties to defend or indemnify the pharmaceutical companies from the ongoing litigation.

Bad Faith Breaches And Their Penalties Look Different From State To State

Insurance companies have a duty to their policyholders to attempt to settle litigation that might exceed policy limits in good faith. This duty means that insurance companies must act honestly, intelligently, and objectively in deciding whether to accept a settlement offer that stays within the policy limits. Failure to do so may result in the insurance company being liable for the entirety of the judgment against the policyholder, even if the verdict exceeds the policy limits.

Does Your Policy Lack Coverage Due To Prior Publication Exclusions?

Standard commercial general liability policies and umbrella policies cover what is known as “advertising injury.”  This coverage applies where a company causes damages to a third party through its advertising, either by defamation, violation of copyrights or trademarks, or violations of privacy rights.  As with many types of coverage, however, companies need to understand the exclusions applied to these types of claims to best address their loss exposures.

Texas Fights Against FLSA Overtime Rule

A United States District Court Judge in Texas issued a nationwide temporary injunction against the Department of Labor’s new rule implementing a higher minimum salary for overtime exempt employees in November, 2016.  The rule had garnered a lot of criticism from businesses worried over the financial costs of either paying workers a higher salary or paying them overtime.  Forecasts had put the number of employees affected by the new rule at over four million people.

How OSHA's Rule Update Will REquire A Policy Manual Update

In May 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published a new regulation that significantly changed the reporting of workplace injuries by requiring certain employers to report workplace injuries electronically and making those reports public. 

The Duty To Defend: Your Insurance Company Is In Your Corner

When people traditionally think of insurance loss payouts, they think of indemnity - claims paid out for damage suffered by property or people.  Yet commercial liability policies include two separate promises from insurance companies - the duty to indemnify and the duty to defend.  The duty to defend requires insurance companies to hire legal counsel and pay the associated legal fees.  In theory this duty is simple enough, but in practice it has a number of complications.