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Jury Awards Insured $20 million in damages against its former insurance broker

On Friday, June 17th, at 5:00pm, a Federal Court jury in the Southern District of New York handed a second knockout blow to Alliant Insurance Services Inc., a national insurance brokerage firm that had bungled the insurance coverage for buildings at Industry City/ Bush Terminal ahead of Hurricane Sandy. Cammeby's is a New York real estate management company with an excess of $1.5 billion in properties under management.

Following a claim for $30,000,000.00 worth of hurricane related damages at Industry City on October 29th 2012, Cammeby's insurance company, Affilliated FM, informed it that prior to the loss the coverage had been reduced by $20,000,000.00. Thereafter Cammeby's retained the highly regarded Insurance Coverage firm Weg and Myers to sue Affiliated FM and its insurance broker, Alliant Insurance Services.

In August of 2014, the case was tried for the first time by Weg and Myers' partner, Dennis D'Antonio. Prior to the first trial, a $1,000,000.00 settlement offer had been turned down. Following a two week trial, a jury returned a $20,000,000.00 verdict in favor of Cammeby's finding that Alliant was negligent. Thereafter, the verdict was set aside by Judge Rakoff based upon an instruction that had been given to the jury after they had begun deliberations. More recently, after turning down a $4,000,000.00 offer from Alliant, the matter proceeded to a second trial before Judge Rakoff that began on June 8, 2016. At the second trial, the case was again tried by Dennis D'Antonio and his partner Joshua Mallin. On June 17th, a second jury in as many years returned a second $20,000,000.00 verdict against Alliant in favor of Cammeby's. Accordingly, the amount now due to Cammeby's, with interest, will exceed $26,000,000.

Cameby's was represented by Dennis D'Antonio and Joshua Mallin of Weg and Myers , PC, who were assisted by associates Krysta Ku and Daniel Belzil.

Cammeby's trial attorney is Dennis D'Antonio, Esq. who is the managing Partner and lead trial lawyer for Weg and Myers, a boutique Manhattan Insurance Coverage firm representing the real estate industry in insurance coverage matters for over 30 years. Mr. D'Antonio's largest single insurance recovery to date is $150,000,000.00.

Alliant was represented at the first trial by Paul Kovner of Rubin Fiorella & Friedman LLP

Alliant was represented at the second trial by Paul Kovner of Rubin Fiorella & Friedman LLP and Richard A. Simpson and Benjaman C.Eggert of Wiley Rein LLP

For further information, please contact Dennis D'Antonio at 212.227.4210; 646.361.0693 or ddantonio@wegandmyers.com. Click here to read a copy of Judge Rakoff's Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law

The effects of Superstorm Sandy has put insurance in the forefront of people's minds once again. It has become clear that many insurance claims remain unresolved. As a result, in an unprecedented move, both the States of New York and New Jersey have instituted mediation programs for certain Sandy claims that have been denied or remain unresolved. While New York has limited this program to residential non-FEMA claims, the announcement out of the New Jersey Governor's Office indicates that its program, not yet codified will include non-FEMA commercial claims as well. Click here to see a copy of the New York regulations. You can also click here for a copy of the press release in connection with the New Jersey mediation program. Once this becomes codified we will post this on our website. In addition, as a public service, we have prepared a basic checklist that all policyholders can review in connection with claims that they may have. This checklist only covers the basics as it relates to claim presentations and is primarily geared to the homeowner who may be confronted with these insurance issues for the first time . Please click here to access this checklist. In addition, since preparing this checklist, FEMA has issued a Bulletin which suspends various Proof of Loss filing requirements for Superstorm Sandy claims that were referenced in the checklist. Click here to access a copy of that Bulletin. For more sophisticated business and homeowner claim issues, we are available for consultation.

Second Department affirms reformation of insured's policy and orders carrier to defend. Click here to read a copy of the Second Department's decision in Essex Ins. Co. v. Vickers.

Court rejects carrier's use of the "earth movement" exclusion to disclaim coverage as a result of dewatering activities at adjacent property. Click here to read a copy of the Court's decision.

Appellate Division reinstates verdict in favor of Public Adjuster's right to its fee, in connection with a litigated coverage action. Click here to read the Appellate Division's decision in PAB v. Seward Park.

Weg and Myers wins at the Court of Appeals. Reinstating a victory won at the Supreme Court level, the Court of Appeals, adopting the position advocated by Weg and Myers in its entirety, ruled that violation of New York City Administrative Code Sec. 27-1031(b)(1) imposes absolute liability on a defendante whose excavation work caused damage to an adjacent property. While the violation of an Administrative Code violation usually does not impose absolute liability on the violator, the Court ruled that because a historical analysis of the section in question revealed that it had its origins in State law, the imposition of absolute liability was appropriate. Click here to read the Court's decision in Yemen v. 281 Broadway Holdings, et al.

Appellate Division affirms decision allowing plaintiffs to pursue punitive damage claims against various contractor defendants. Click here to read the Court's decision in 11 Essex v. Tower Insurance Company et al.

Court compels Subcontractor's Carrier to Defend Contractor. Issue of whether subcontractor's activities took place while working at job site is an issue yet to be decided but is not a basis to deny defense coverage to contractor. Click here to read the Court's decision.

Southern District Court holds that a carrier cannot compel an insured to submit to an appraisal when coverage issues still must be resolved. Read the attached decision.


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Representation of Public Adjusters and Brokers

Public adjusters have been the front line advocates on behalf of policyholders for decades. The use and function of public adjusters, however, have been regulated by the state legislatures, thereby creating various legal issues. Recognizing their unique role, Weg and Myers, P.C. has historically represented public adjusters in regulatory and legal disputes and continues in its efforts to preserve and safeguard their rights.

While Weg and Myers, P.C. has traditionally prosecuted claims against insurance brokers (see practice area below), Weg and Myers has been called upon to represent insurance brokers in commercial disputes with insurance companies wherein the carrier has been accused of breaching the contractual rights of the broker. Such representation generally stems from an agency agreement entered into between the broker and the carrier which is not being honored by the carrier or where the carrier has improperly attempted to terminate that relationship. As an example of Weg and Myers efforts, it was successful in negotiating a $400,000.00 settlement with TIG insurance company as a result of TIG's alleged failure to properly credit an insurance broker with business it had written for the company which entitled that broker to a contingency commission based upon the broker's production numbers.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

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