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Posts in D&O Policies.

On May 9, 2024, Judge Theodore C. Zayner of the California Superior Court for the County of Santa Clara issued a decision in Zoom Video Communications, Inc. v. Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, Case No. 22-CV-398878, holding that a civil investigative demand (“CID”) from the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) did not constitute a covered “Claim” under an errors and omissions policy issued to Zoom.

Responding to a government investigation can be a costly proposition.  The attorneys’ fees and other expenses incurred to comply with a grand jury subpoena or a civil ...

Posted in D&O Policies

On May 9, 2024, Judge Rennie of the Delaware Superior Court issued a decision in Origis USA LLC v. Great Am. Ins. Co., Case No. N23C-07-102, holding that an insured’s coverage action against its D&O insurers was premature in light of the policy’s “No Action” clause.

The insured’s primary policy (to which three excess insurers followed form) states:

With respect to any Liability Coverage Part, no action shall be taken against the Insurer unless, as a condition precedent thereto, there has been full compliance with all the terms of this Policy, and until the Insured’s

Posted in D&O Policies

On August 10, 2023, Judge Rennie of the Superior Court of Delaware issued a decision in a pair of cases, Viacom Inc. v. Paramount Global, C.A. N22C-06-016 SKR CCLD and Redstone v. ACE American Insurance Co., C.A. No. N22C-06-020 SKR CCLD, ruling that a D&O policy’s “bump-up” exclusion did not apply to losses arising from a merger transaction.

The coverage dispute arose from a 2019 transaction through which Viacom merged with CBS.  As a result of the all-stock transaction, “all assets of Viacom ‘vest[ed] in CBS, and CBS was the surviving corporation.”  Shareholders ...

Posted in D&O Policies

On May 23, 2023, SDNY Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn issued an order in In re: SVB Financial Group, Case No. 23-10367(MG), lifting an automatic stay to permit Silicon Valley Bank’s D&O insurers to advance to defense costs to the bank’s officers in connection with litigation arising from the bank’s collapse.

A typical D&O policy offers coverage both to the corporation and to its officers and directors.  SVB D&O insurance program consists of 16 so-called “ABC Policies”, which provides three categories of coverage: (1) “Side A” coverage goes directly to directors and ...

Posted in D&O Policies

Insurance law is generally a matter of state law.  Determining the applicable state law can be outcome determinative in a coverage dispute, as different states have different rules concerning the interpretation and enforcement of policy provisions, what claims the insured can bring, and other issues.  As previously noted on this blog, insurance policies frequently have no choice of law provisions, so the applicable law must be determined under a conflicts of law analysis.  Under New York law, where an insurance policy covers risks across multiple states (a common scenario for a large ...

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