United States District Court for the Eastern District Washington Applies Xia v. ProBuilders Specialty Insurance Company RRG

In the matter of The Dolsen Companies, et al. v. Bedivere Insurance Company, et al., Case No. 1:16-CV-3141-TOR, 2017 WL 3996440 (E.D.Wash. September 11, 2017) (ECF 70), the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington addressed the application of an absolute pollution exclusion to claims for defense and indemnity of a lawsuit [...]

Washington Supreme Court: Lawyers May Represent Insurers and Their Insureds

On September 14, 2017, the Washington Supreme Court held in Arden v. Forsberg & Umlauf, P.S., No. 93207-7, that lawyers who represent insurance companies in coverage disputes may also defend their insureds provided they adhere to the Rules of Professional Conduct. In the underlying matter, Hartford retained Forsberg & Umlauf P.S. (“Forsberg”) to defend Hartford’s [...]


Soha & Lang, P.S. Attorney to Speak at CPCU Society 2017 Annual Meeting in Orlando

Soha & Lang, P.S. Shareholder Paul Rosner is one of more than 50 speakers who will be participating in the 2017 CPCU Annual Meeting in Orlando this month. On Sunday September 17th, Paul, Ulises Castellon of Fire Cause Analysis, and Denise Brown of InterWest Insource Services will be presenting “Bad Faith Nightmares: Recent Trends and [...]


Washington Supreme Court Holds that the Lystedt Law Provides a Cause of Action

In Swank, et al. v. Valley Christian School et al., ___ Wn.2d ___, ___ P.3d ___ (July 6, 2017), the Washington Supreme Court held that the Lystedt law (RCW 28A.600.190) creates an implied cause of action. The 2009 Lystedt law requires that 1) schools develop a concussion and head injury information sheet; 2) youth athletes [...]


Washington Supreme Court Holds that Fault for Negligence Cannot be Apportioned to a Parent of the Plaintiff Under RCW 4.22.070

In Smelser v. Paul, et al, ___ Wn.2d ___, ___ P.3d ___ (July 6, 2017), the Washington Supreme Court found that, under the parental immunity doctrine, parents owe no duty of care to their children, and on that basis, fault for negligence cannot be apportioned to a parent of the plaintiff under RCW 4.22.070. Derrick [...]


Washington Supreme Court Extends Olympic Steamship to Sureties in Public Works Contract

In King County v. Vinci Constr. Grands Projects, et al.,  __Wn.2d __, __ P.3d __ (July 6, 2017), the Washington Supreme Court was asked to review an award of nearly $15 million in attorney fees against five surety companies following a jury trial for breach of contract in a public works project.  In a six [...]


Oregon Court of Appeals holds that a Multi-Unit New Residential Construction Exclusion Does Not Apply

In Hunters Ridge Condo. Ass’n v. Sherwood Crossing, LLC, 285 Or App 416 (2017), the insured was a subcontractor on a condominium project.  The insured was sued in a construction defect lawsuit.  The insured failed to appear, and a default judgment was entered against it.  Based on the default judgment, the condominium association (“Association”) filed [...]


Washington Supreme Court Rules Efficient Proximate Cause Rule Applies To Third Party Liability Policies

In another example of bad facts make bad law, the Washington Supreme Court, in a six to three decision, ruled that the “efficient proximate cause rule” applies to the interpretation of general liability policies.  See Xia v. ProBuilders Specialty Insurance Company RRG, __Wn.2d __, __ P.3d __ (April 27, 2017).  Turning insurance contract construction on [...]


Insured May Obtain Statutory Attorney Fees Where She Recovered Amount Not Memorialized In a Judgment

The Oregon Supreme Court held in Long v. Farmers Ins. Co. of Oregon, 360 Or 791, – P3d — (2017) that an insured may obtain statutory attorney fees without entry of a judgment.  A statute, ORS 742.061, permits an award of attorney fees if, in the insured’s lawsuit against the insurer, the insured obtains a [...]


Washington’s Insurance Fair Conduct Act Does Not Create an Independent Cause of Action for Violations of Washington Administrative Code Regulations

The Washington Supreme Court held today that violation of Washington Administrative Code (“WAC”) regulations alone does not support a cause of action under the Insurance Fair Conduct Act (“IFCA”) in Perez-Crisantos v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., No. 92267-5, with eight justices joining the lead opinion. The Court’s findings included the following: IFCA does [...]