Overzealous denial of claim results in large punitive damage award

The recent BC Supreme Court decision Arsenovski v. Bodin, 2016 BCSC 359, illustrates, by way of an extreme example, the risk insurers run by overzealous denial of an insured’s claim.

The case arose from the insurer’s decision to deny …

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Insurance Coverage for Negligent Parenting?


A new case has just come down that should be of interest where claims are made by infants or others under a disability and there is a third party claim against a family member for their alleged negligence relating to …

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Gardening 101: Construing Efficacy Exclusions in Commercial General Liability Insurance Policies

In West Creek Farms Ltd. v. Lloyd’s Underwriters, 2016 BCSC 48, Mr. Justice Macintosh considered general and specific principles of contractual interpretation to parse an efficacy exclusion clause in which ambiguity was unearthed.

Mardell Greenhouses Inc. (“Mardell”) purchased …

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Exclusion Clauses and Fortuitous Damage

The recent B.C. case of Wynward Insurance Group v. MS Developments Inc., 2015 BCSC 324 (“Wynward Insurance”), looks at an insurance policy exclusion clause for damage “caused directly or indirectly” by earth expansion and offers clarification as …

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Self-Represented Litigant Ordered to Pay Double Costs to Insurer

Most Insurers are aware of the higher costs associated with litigation where the opposing party is self-represented. High costs can be due to a variety of factors, such as numerous applications, failure to follow procedural steps, irrelevant claims and lengthy …

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Recent Court of Appeal Decision Holds Cyclist Entirely at Fault for Passing Vehicle on the Right

The British Columbia Court of Appeal recently found a cyclist to be solely at fault for an accident occurring when the cyclist attempted to pass a motor vehicle on the right. Following the Court of Appeal decision, leave to appeal …

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Duty To Defend And Concurrent Causes Of Damages

In Precision Plating Ltd. v. Axa Pacific Insurance Company, 2015 BCCA 277, the British Columbia Court of Appeal interpreted a pollution exclusion clause in a Commercial General Liability (“CGL”) insurance policy. The Court of Appeal held that the insurer …

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Developments in Cyber Risk

Cyber risk is an increasingly complex subject for the insurance industry. Emerging issues include coaching and threat response, and a developing body of case law deals with liability for cyber breaches, in addition to drafting and interpretation of cyber risk …

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Duty To Defend After Policy Expiration: The Court Interprets The Reasonable Expectations Of A Homeowners Policy

In Canadian Northern Shield Insurance Company v. Intact Insurance Company, 2015 BCSC 767, the British Columbia Supreme Court considered whether an insurer has a duty to defend an insured with respect to claims arising from damage that occurred outside …

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Better late than never for an insured: Late Notice to an insurer of a claim

In Lloyd’s Underwriters v. Blue Mountain Log Sales Ltd., 2015 BCSC 630, the British Columbia Supreme Court considered whether an insurer was obligated to pay for pre-tender defence costs, meaning defence costs that were incurred by the insured prior to …

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