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Beveridge & Diamond’s 100 lawyers in seven U.S. offices focus on environmental and natural resource law, litigation and dispute resolution. We help clients around the world resolve critical environmental and sustainability issues relating to their products, facilities, and operations. 

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Showing 106 posts by Edward M. Grauman.

New York High Court Rules on “Unavailability Exception” to Pro Rata Allocation in Long-Tail Environmental Coverage Case

The New York Court of Appeals ruled last week that if an insurance policy provides for pro rata allocation to determine the insurance coverage responsibility for environmental contamination spanning multiple policy periods, the policyholder bears the risk of loss for periods where pollution coverage was unavailable for purchase. Keyspan Gas East Corp. v. Munich Reinsurance America, Inc., No. 20 (Slip Op. Mar. 27, 2018). Read More ›

SCOTX: Missed 30-Day Service Deadline Does Not Mandate Dismissal of Challenge to TCEQ Action

Last week, the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that serving citation on the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (“TCEQ”) outside a 30-day deadline set forth in the Texas Clean Air Act (“TCAA”) did not require dismissal of the plaintiff’s lawsuit.[1] The court’s ruling may provide some relief for plaintiffs who do not strictly comply with the TCAA’s service requirements. However, the remedy for non-compliance with other TCEQ statutes’ service deadlines may be less forgiving, and practitioners should endeavor to meet all service requirements as a best practice when challenging TCEQ decisions. Read More ›

Insurance Policyholders Score Victory on Critical Allocation Issue in Second Circuit Olin Decision

In an action seeking insurance coverage for environmental contamination, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that “all sums” allocation would apply to the policies at issue, and therefore the policyholder could choose which of the multiple triggered policy periods it preferred to cover the entire loss, up to the limits of the policies in that year.  Olin Corp. v. OneBeacon Am. Ins. Co., No. 15-2047(L) (2d Cir. July 18, 2017). Read More ›

In Deepwater Horizon insurance coverage dispute, Fifth Circuit affirms favorable ruling for policyholders and certifies unfair insurance practices question to Texas high court

In the latest development in the insurance coverage litigation arising out of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed a $50 million finding of coverage, holding that only the presence of other actual, available insurance coverage—rather than the mere potential for other insurance—can trigger an “other insurance” clause.  In re Deepwater Horizon, No. 14-31321, slip op. at 10 (5th Cir. Nov. 19, 2015).  Additionally, the court asked the Texas Supreme Court to weigh in on whether the insured must demonstrate damages beyond the denied policy benefits in order to sustain a claim for unfair insurance practices under the Texas Insurance Code. Read More ›

Texas Supreme Court Rules that CERCLA PRP Letters and Enforcement Proceedings Are “Suits” Subject to the Duty to Defend Under Standard CGL Insurance Policies

On June 26, 2015, the Texas Supreme Court held that enforcement proceedings under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (“CERCLA”)—including the issuance of a “PRP letter” notifying the recipient that it is a potentially responsible party—constitute a “suit” subject to the duty to defend under standard commercial general liability insurance policies, joining the substantial majority of courts that have considered the issue. McGinnes Indus. Maint. Corp. v. Phoenix Ins. Co., No. 14-0465 (Tex. June 26, 2015). Read More ›

Texas Supreme Court Rules Additional-Insured Coverage Is Limited by Underlying Indemnification Agreement in In re Deepwater Horizon

In a much anticipated 8-1 decision, the Texas Supreme Court ruled Friday that BP is not entitled to additional-insured coverage in In re Deepwater Horizon, No. 13-0670 (Feb. 13, 2015). Read More ›

Argentina Highlights (Volume III 2013)

Latin American Region Environmental Report   Read More ›

Puerto Rico Highlights (Volume III 2013)

Latin American Region Environmental Report   Read More ›

Fifth Circuit Seeks Texas Supreme Court Input in Deepwater Horizon Insurance Coverage Dispute

On August 29, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit withdrew its opinion from earlier this year that had awarded “additional insured” coverage to BP American Production Company and affiliates (“BP”) under Transocean Holding, Inc.’s (“Transocean”) umbrella insurance policies. In re Deepwater Horizon, Case No. 12-30230, Slip Op. (5th Cir. Aug. 29, 2013) ( “Slip Op.”). In its place, the Fifth Circuit certified two questions to the Supreme Court of Texas: (1) whether BP is covered as an additional insured, based solely on the language of the insurance policies; and (2) whether the contra proferentem doctrine of requiring insurance policies to be interpreted against insurers and in favor of insureds applies to sophisticated parties. Id. at 14. The Supreme Court of Texas accepted the certified questions for review on September 6, 2013. See http://www.supreme.courts.state.tx.us/historical/2013/sep/090613.htm. Read More ›

Insurer Required to Defend Waste Disposal Well Operator in Lawsuits Arising from Sinkhole Collapse

On August 1, 2013, the Texas Court of Appeals (13th District) held that an insurer owed a duty to defend a waste disposal well operator in four lawsuits arising from damage caused by the collapse of a sinkhole at the well site. The plaintiffs in the underlying suits alleged that their property had been damaged as a result of contamination from harmful substances injected by the well operator. The insurer, which had issued a commercial general liability policy to the operator, declined coverage on several grounds, including that coverage was excluded by the policy’s Total Pollution Exclusion (“Pollution Exclusion”) and Oil and Gas Amendatory Endorsement (“Oil and Gas Endorsement”). The operator argued that those exclusions should not apply, as they would render illusory the coverage for blowout and cratering hazards provided under the policy’s Blowout and Cratering Coverage Endorsement (“Blowout Endorsement”). Read More ›