Archives: Arbitration

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The Top 10 InReDisputesBlog Posts for 2019

Below are the top 10 blog posts from our Insurance & Reinsurance Disputes Blog for 2019.  These are the ones our readers viewed the most last year on our blog. The compilation is diverse as is the topic of insurance and reinsurance disputes.  Please enjoy this stroll down memory lane.  If you like these and … Continue Reading

Policyholder’s Attempt to Third-Party Reinsurers Denied

When a policyholder faces litigation from its insurance company over a claim submitted by the policyholder, the policyholder often will defend by alleging that the insurance company has breached the insurance contract and has wrongfully failed to pay the claim.  Sometimes, however, a policyholder will try to blame the insurance company’s refusal to pay a … Continue Reading

Who Decides Consolidation Issue? A New Arbitration Panel or the Old One?

It is pretty well settled under modern arbitration law, including reinsurance arbitrations, that procedural issues like consolidation are questions for the arbitrators and not the courts.  But what happens if there are multiple arbitration panels?  Which panel decides the consolidation application?  And what if one arbitration has been completed and a motion to consolidate is … Continue Reading

Liquidator Compelled to Arbitrate Hurricane Reinsurance Disputes

The federal policy favoring arbitration sometimes bumps up against state-based receivers where the receiver would rather the receivership court address reinsurance disputes than have the matter arbitrated.  In the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, which devastated Puerto Rico, reinsurance disputes arose over a cedent’s allocation between the hurricanes and other aspects of the many … Continue Reading

December 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter

In our December 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter we discuss non-signatories being bound by arbitration clauses, a case involving who decides arbitrability questions, a functus officio case, a remand to an arbitration panel to clarify an arbitration award, and an update on TRIA.  A number of other case developments are digested as well.  Please enjoy.  Feedback is always welcomed.… Continue Reading

Another Federal Court Denies Application to Seal Arbitration Award

Nearly every US reinsurance arbitration includes a Confidentiality Agreement.  The vast majority of those confidentiality agreements are based on the ARIAS•U.S. Confidentiality Agreement and Protective Order model form.  Most confidentiality agreements provide that disclosure may be made “as is necessary in connection with court proceedings relating to any aspect of the arbitration, including but not limited … Continue Reading

Unique Arbitration Clause Does Not Prevent Granting of Motion to Compel Arbitration

Whether a motion to compel arbitration will be granted depends on, among other things, whether the arbitration provision is broad or narrow and whether the dispute falls within the scope of the arbitration provision.  In a recent case, a California federal court construed unique language in an arbitration provision in a reinsurance agreement, granted the … Continue Reading

Reinsurance and the Death Master File

In a traditional life insurance and reinsurance relationship, a life insurance company issues a policy to a policyholder and reinsures the policy (usually via a block of business consisting of the same or similar policies) with its reinsurer either by coinsurance or on a yearly renewable term basis (or otherwise).  When the insured person dies, … Continue Reading

In State Court It’s Just as Tough to Vacate an Arbitration Award

Most commercial arbitrations fall under the Federal Arbitration Act.  But some arbitrations are intra-state so they come within the various state arbitration laws.  In New York, for example, Article 75 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules governs arbitration.  When it comes to vacating an arbitration award, however, choosing state law over the FAA is … Continue Reading

It’s Not Over Until It Is Over

In reinsurance arbitrations, once the arbitration panel issues its final award its job is over.  That’s what the doctrine of functus officio means.  But there are exceptions to the functus officio rule (see our Blog from November 2018).  Additionally, what happens when a panel retains jurisdiction after issuing the final award?  In a recent case, … Continue Reading

Non-Party Notice of Appeal in Reinsurance Dispute Results in an Award of Attorney Fees

When you are not a party to a legal proceeding, but nevertheless file a notice of appeal purportedly on behalf of a party after a settlement, the likelihood of a positive outcome is very low.  Such was the case recently before a New York federal court.  The result:  an award of attorney fees.… Continue Reading

Non-Signatory Surety Bound By Arbitration Clause in Incorporated Contract

An arbitration provision in a contract typically applies only to the contracting parties.  Where, however, the contract is incorporated by reference into a second agreement, if it is broad enough, the party to the second agreement–although a non-signatory to the original agreement–may find that the arbitration provision applies to them as well.  This was the … Continue Reading

September 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter

The September 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter is now available for your reading pleasure.  You may access it on the Squire Patton Boggs website or here.  In this issue, we discuss a decision concerning the preclusive effect of an interim security award, a captive reinsurance dispute and an update on EU Third Country Equivalence.  Please enjoy.  Comments … Continue Reading

Pre-Answer Security and Preclusion Based on Arbitral Decision — Who Decides?

In reinsurance disputes where one party is insolvent or has financial difficulties, the other side often demands security.  Where a non-domiciliary is involved, some states have pre-answer security requirements, which have been held to apply in reinsurance arbitrations.  In a procedurally complicated case, where an arbitration panel issued a security award and then stayed the … Continue Reading

In a Battle of Conformity and Preemption, Arbitration Prevails

The Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution nullifies state laws that conflict with federal law and treaties of the U.S.  But, under the McCarran-Ferguson Act, state insurance law reverse preempts federal law that interferes with the business of insurance as regulated by the states.  This issue comes up in conflicts between anti-arbitration provisions in certain … Continue Reading

How Does the Latest US Supreme Court Ruling on Class Arbitration Affect Reinsurance Arbitration?

The US Supreme Court’s pronouncements on class arbitration have little to do with reinsurance arbitrations.  But, when the Supreme Court speaks on arbitrations and construes the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), there may be statements or even holdings by the court that could affect aspects of reinsurance arbitrations, so we pay attention.  In the most recent … Continue Reading

How Courts Select Umpires Where The Reinsurance Contract Gives Courts the Power

Some reinsurance contracts have a provision in the arbitration clause that allow the parties to ask a court to appoint the umpire if the parties cannot agree on the selection of one.  A court’s analysis of the candidates and whether they are qualified or should be disqualified from consideration as an umpire is always interesting … Continue Reading

The Consolidation Circus Continues

In December 2018, we blogged about a new reinsurance arbitration consolidation case.  We mentioned that the reinsurer filed several other petitions to compel arbitration in various jurisdictions all seeking to allow for consolidation of these disputes in three arbitrations  based on the different reinsurance programs.  The facts are the same so read the December 2018 post … Continue Reading

Liquidator’s Motion to Dismiss Petition to Confirm Reinsurance Arbitration Award Denied

In some states receivers may bring claims inside or outside the receivership court, including reinsurance arbitrations. In other states receivership proceedings end the ability of either party to bring a reinsurance arbitration outside of the liquidation court.  In a recent case, a receiver of an insolvent cedent commenced a reinsurance arbitration outside of the receivership … Continue Reading

Partial Final Award Not Ripe For Confirmation

Under Section 9 of the Federal Arbitration Act, a court must confirm an arbitration award when a timely request is made unless there is a basis to vacate or modify the award.  But a court has no ability to confirm an arbitration award unless the award is considered a “final” award.  The law in virtually … Continue Reading

Private Interest Outweighs Public Interest In Sealing of Arbitration Documents

In the past several years, motions to seal arbitration documents generally have been denied in favor of the public’s right to have access to documents filed in court.  We discussed this in a prior blog post in the context of arbitration awards.  But not every court will deny a motion to seal arising from a reinsurance … Continue Reading

March 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter

Our March 2019 Reinsurance Newsletter is available for your reading pleasure.  It covers reinsurance developments since December 2018 and also includes regulatory and policy updates as well as our annual Brief Review of Reinsurance Trends.  Please enjoy.  You can access the Newsletter here.… Continue Reading

Enforcement of Arbitration Subpoenas and Summonses

Sometimes it is necessary to obtain evidence from non-parties during a reinsurance arbitration.  Yet, the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) does not expressly sanction non-party (or for that matter any) pre-hearing discovery.  In practice, however, most parties ask the arbitration panel to issue a subpoena to a “hearing” and then negotiate with the non-party about producing … Continue Reading

Arbitration of Insurance Coverage Disputes

Coverage disputes between insurance carriers and policyholders are ripe for resolution through arbitration.  ARIAS•U.S. is working on a project to create an arbitration pathway, including modified rules and requirements for certified arbitrators, for these types of disputes and others.  But unless the parties agree or the insurance contract contains an arbitration clause, the arbitration option … Continue Reading
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