Was This April Fool’s Three Days Early?
Here’s an interesting headline that appeared in Business Insurance online on March 29: “Disability Support Firm Settles ADA Lawsuit.” The article states: “A Phoenix disability support services company has agreed to pay $100,000 to settle a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission lawsuit that charged it with discriminating against disabled employees by refusing to provide them with reasonable accommodations, the agency said Tuesday. . . . The EEOC had said in its February 2015 lawsuit that [the company] violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by firing employees with disabilities rather than providing them with reasonable accommodations because of its inflexible leave policy.” The BI article also notes that the company “said in a statement it is denying the charges, but settled with the agency to avoid potentially much higher litigation costs.” [Thank you to a loyal CO reader for passing this along.]
Follow-Form Excess Insurer Need Not Follow Underlying’s Coverage Determination
In case you have this issue: “We agree with the rationales expressed in both In re Liquidation of Midland Ins. Co. and Allmerica and conclude that a follow form insurer is not automatically bound by the coverage determinations of the primary policy insurer. Although, as noted supra, Appellant cites a number of out-of-state cases for the premise that follow form policies should be construed in a manner consistent with the primary policy, we note that none of these cases require that the follow form insurer be bound by the primary insurer’s interpretation of the contract language. Instead, these cases stand for the principle that where a court interprets the policy language of the primary policy, it may not give the same language a different meaning as to the excess policy. (citation omitted). Therefore, we hold that XL was free to interpret the contract language contained in the Zurich Policy in a way that departed from Zurich’s interpretation of the same language under the circumstances presented.” Cristal United States v. XL Specialty Ins. Co., No. 2494 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. Feb. 24, 2017) (emphasis in original).