1. STATE APPELLATE DECISIONS
    1. FLORIDA
  • Clarke v. State Farm Insurance Company (4th DCA). Homeowners’ insurance policy/policy interpretation. District Court affirmed final summary judgment in favor of the insurer in a declaratory judgment action, holding that the language of the homeowners’ insurance policy excluded bodily injury caused by the transmission of a communicable disease or virus.
  • Luna v. Cooperativa de Seguros Multiples de P.R., Inc. (2nd DCA). Homeowners’ insurance/settlement agreement. Trial court erred in granting insurer’s motion to enforce settlement agreement. No valid agreement to settle insured’s breach of contract action against insurer where insurer’s response to insured’s offer to settle claim did not meet the conditions of insured’s offer. Insured’s offer to settle claim demanded two checks be issued, one payable to insured and the mortgagee and the other to the insured, insured’s attorney, and the public adjuster. Insurer issued only one check. Therefore, no meeting of the minds by the parties.
  • Vander Voot v. Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (4th DCA). Coverage/damage and loss occurring during policy period. Summary judgment in favor of insurer reversed. Disputed issues of fact existed as to whether damage to property occurred during process of returning goods from moving and storage company's warehouse to the insureds, which occurred during policy period. Affidavits and testimony by moving company manager showed unbroken chain of custody of property in an undamaged condition until it was delivered to insureds' home within the policy period created sufficient inference in favor of insureds. Affidavits of moving company's employees complied with requirements of rule where affiants that participated in the moving of the furnishings based their affidavits on their personal knowledge and use of term “belief” in the affidavit was used in a manner that actually expressed personal knowledge. Case remanded to trial court for further proceedings.
  • Worthy v. Crowder Excavating and Chartis Claims, Inc. (Fla. 1st DCA). Workers’ compensation/advance of funds. Order by Judge of Compensation Claims (JCC) denying request for $2,000 advance payment of compensation, pursuant to section 440.20(12)(c)2.,Fla. Stat. affirmed. Section 440.20(12)(c)2. provides that once a claimant has made a showing that he or she has not returned to the same or equivalent employment with no substantial reduction in wages, an advance payment of compensation not in excess of $2,000 may be ordered after giving due consideration to the interests of the claimant. Claimant failed to provide any evidence to show that $2,000, as opposed to a lesser amount, was appropriate in claimant’s situation.
  1. GEORGIA
  • Lord v. Lowe and Hartford Insurance Company (A12A1652) (Reported 12 FCDR 3313-3412). Surety bond. Trial court order dismissing administrator’s complaint to recover full amount of bond as compensation for Sheriff’s failure to perform the duties of his office affirmed. Sheriff’s bond was given under the authority of O.C.G.A. § 15-16-5, and pursuant to the “read in / read out” rule, the additional condition that the Sheriff “faithfully perform the duties of [his] office” is unenforceable and must be read out of the bond and could not provide a basis for imposing liability upon the Sheriff or Hartford.
  1. FEDERAL APPELLATE DECISIONS
  • Boroski v. Dyncorp International et. al. (11th Cir. Fla.). Workers’ compensation/statutory construction of Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (the “Act”), 33 U.S.C. §§ 901–950 (2006), as extended by the Defense Base Act, 42 U.S.C.§§ 1651–55 (2006). Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed district court’s decision that phrase “newly awarded compensation” in 33 U.S.C. § 906(c) means “newly entitled to compensation” and phrase “currently receiving compensation” in 33 U.S.C. § 906(c) means “currently entitled to compensation.”
  1. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW/AGENCY DECISIONS
  • No Florida or Georgia agency decisions reported.
  1. NOTICES OF ADMINISTRATIVE RULEMAKING PROCEEDINGS
    1. FLORIDA
  1. GEORGIA
  • No Georgia rulemaking proceedings reported.
  1. MEETING NOTICES OF INTEREST/MISCELLANEOUS
  • Order Placing K.E.L. Title Insurance Group, Inc. into Receivership. The Florida Department of Financial Services has been appointed as the Receiver of K.E.L. Title Insurance Group, Inc. (“KEL”). KEL consented to the receivership. As grounds for the receivership, the Receiver alleged that KEL had recently paid claims resulting from the theft of real estate transaction proceeds by several of K.E.L.' s authorized and appointed title insurance agents and payment of these claims caused K.E.L.' s surplus to fall below the minimum required by Florida Statutes. Furthermore, K.E.L. notified the OFFICE that an internal investigation found five additional claims similar in nature to the above referenced claims that will have a further negative impact on K.E.L's surplus.
  • Florida Insurance Consumer Advocate Calls for Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (FOIR) Investigation into Alleged Insurance Company Post-Claim Underwriting Procedures. Florida Insurance Consumer Advocate, Robin Westcott, requests Insurance Commissioner McCarty to initiate an investigation and commence action against any admitted insurance carrier that employs a business practice of routinely using credit information obtained after a claim has been filed to deny a claim or void homeowners’ insurance coverage.
  • Non-Admitted Insurance Multi-State Agreement (NIMA) Member State Representatives Select Governing Committee Officer. NIMA Member state representatives met by conference call and elected a slate of officers for its Governing Committee. The NIMA Officers for next year will be: Chair: Director Merle Scheiber (South Dakota), Vice Chair: Commissioner Neal Gooch (Utah), and Secretary: Commissioner Kevin McCarty (Florida).
  • Office of Insurance Georgia - Notice of Public Hearing. The Office of Insurance noticed a public hearing to be November 5, 2012, at 9:00 a.m., Hearing Room, 7th Floor, West Tower, Floyd Building, 2 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Atlanta, GA, regarding the proposed acquisition of AMGP Georgia Managed Care Company, Inc. by Wellpoint, Inc.