Insurance Coverage for TCPA Class Actions Remains Uphill Battle

fax_machineClass actions involving the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA) are nothing new. What is new is that they recently hit the real estate industry. Worse yet, insurance companies have grown increasingly savvy in excluding coverage for those types of lawsuits. Nonetheless, a smart company might be able to bargain away its questionable insurance rights in exchange for settling a TCPA class action. Continue Reading

Improve Your Arbitration Clause Through Notice-and-Cure Provision

warning-alert-signRecently, some companies have dodged potential class liability by forcing would-be plaintiffs into arbitration. Other businesses have “picked off” class adversaries by paying them individual damages. Can those strategies be successfully combined? Continue Reading

Colorado Slams Door on MSAs

slamming-doorLast week, the Colorado Insurance Commissioner did directly what the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has been doing indirectly for over two years: he outlawed marketing services agreements (MSAs). Very narrow opportunities for collaborative marketing remain; other states may follow suit. Continue Reading

Nationstar Loses First Round in Bout Against PMI Class Action

Calendar-Circle-DateNational restrictions on private mortgage insurance (PMI) have been in place for almost 20 years, and most lenders and servicers rigorously follow them. But a recent decision from a Pennsylvania federal court suggests that some banks may have grown lax in that regard. Continue Reading

Secret Dealings Undermine Agreement to Pursue Title Company’s Insurer

secret-meeting-shadows_2In many lawsuits, the defendant’s only significant asset is its insurance policy, which may or may not cover a resulting judgment. That can lead to collusion in which the plaintiff and the defendant agree to a settlement that is collectible only against insurance proceeds. What could possibly go wrong, you ask? Plenty. Continue Reading

Rulings on Lender-Placed Insurance Shift in Industry’s Favor

tarotI can’t recall any decision in which a judge openly compared his job to that of a tarot card reader, but a federal jurist in Florida recently did exactly that—in the context of a class action over lender-placed insurance (LPI). The prediction at hand was whether the regional appellate tribunal, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, would accept or reject the filed-rate doctrine as a defense to LPI lawsuits. Continue Reading

Go Extra Mile to Prove Old, Lost Arbitration Agreements

digbackgroundFor now, individual arbitration is still a viable option for avoiding at least some class actions. But what do you do when the transaction for the would-be class representative is so old that you no longer have a copy of the arbitration agreement? A recent decision from a federal appellate court gives businesses guidance about proving the existence of now-discarded arbitration contracts. Continue Reading

Class-Action Trolls Covet Weak Spots in Your Filed Rates

flashlightIf your company must publically file its service rates, you should consider attacks that plaintiffs’ lawyers have launched against other fee schedules. Also, keep in mind ripple effects that market-conduct examinations can have. A recent decision from a California appellate court highlights these dangers. Continue Reading