Opportunistic Rescission: When Do Insurers Waive their Right to Rescind an Insurance Policy?

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Agent/Broker, Disability Insurance, Disability Insurance News, Health Insurance, Insurance Litigation Blog, Life Insurance, News, Waiver & Estoppel July 12, 2018

All too often, we see insurance companies deny insurance claims by attempting to opportunistically rescind insurance policies. This practice has become more prevalent in recent years as insurers look for ways to deny insurance claims.

Anyone who has purchased a disability, life or health insurance policy is likely familiar with the significant paperwork involved in the insurance application process. The paperwork includes policy notices, policy applications, supplemental policy applications, personal history questionnaires, policy warnings, medical examination documents, etc. These will include numerous and detailed questions relevant (and often not so relevant) to the risk being insured. An insurance agent or broker will ask questions on the policy application and often additional questions not on the application. Only after the applicant …

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Los Angeles Daily Journal Publishes Article on May 24, 2018 by Robert McKennon Entitled “Preexisting Condition Doesn’t Preclude Coverage”

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Disability Insurance, ERISA, Insurance Litigation Blog, Legal Articles, News May 28, 2018

In the May 24, 2018 issue of the Los Angeles Daily Journal, the Daily Journal published an article written by the McKennon Law Group’s Robert J. McKennon.  The article addresses a recent case by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which held that if an insured with a preexisting medical condition suffers from an accidental injury, the insured is not precluded from recovery under an accidental death and dismemberment policy if the preexisting condition did not substantially contribute to the injury.  Insurers often attempt to use preexisting conditions as an excuse to deny payment under AD&D policies.  This recent Ninth Circuit opinion helps insureds by making it clear that a preexisting condition’s slight contribution to an injury is insufficient to …

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Agents, Brokers and Rescission of Insurance Policies

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Agent/Broker, Disability Insurance News, Insurance Bad Faith, Insurance Litigation Blog, Life Insurance, Long Term Care Insurance April 09, 2018

Generally, an insurer need not investigate statements made in an application for insurance, subject to certain exceptions. Instead, the potential policyholder or applicant must fully disclose all known material information. If a potential insured does not correctly disclose information on an application (even innocently), the insurer may later try to rescind the insurance policy. When an insurer “rescinds” a policy, it renders the contract as if it never existed and frees both parties from their obligations under the contract. Practically, this means that the insurance company is no longer obligated to pay the claims for life insurance, accident insurance, health insurance, long-term care insurance or long-term disability insurance benefits and the policyholder no longer has to pay the policy’s premiums. …

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Accidental Death & Dismemberment Policies: When Is a Death Considered Accidental?

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Insurance Litigation Blog March 03, 2018

Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance pays the insured and his or her beneficiaries a set amount of money if the insured’s death or dismemberment is the direct result of an “accident.”  In the event of a death caused by an accident or an accident that results in the insured losing his or her eyesight, speech, hearing, or a limb, AD&D will pay the insured or his or her beneficiaries a specified amount.  The term “accident” has been given many different meanings in insurance policies and has been heavily litigated throughout history. Courts have encountered significant difficulty attempting to determine when an event is an “accident” for insurance law purposes. While the definition of the term “accident” will vary based …

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Top 8 Tips for When You Take Your Insurer to Court

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Breach of Contract, Insurance Bad Faith, Life Insurance, Non-ERISA November 29, 2017

If you have a claim that has been wrongfully denied or are currently in the claims handling process, it is important to always keep in mind the potential impact of your conduct on future litigation. When dealing with a sophisticated insurance company, you want to put your best claim forward and be prepared for the potential need to file a lawsuit. In this article, we discuss our top eight tips for when you take your insurer to court, from the importance of hiring an attorney with relevant experience to preparing for the long haul that is litigation against an insurance company.

1. Hire an attorney with experience in insurance litigation who actually goes to trial.
This may seem like a …

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Robert McKennon Quoted in Los Angeles Daily Journal Article on Important Insurance Coverage Issue

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Bad Faith, Benefits, Insurance Bad Faith, Insurance Litigation Blog, Life Insurance, News, News Blog July 25, 2017

On July 20, 2017, the Los Angeles Daily Journal quoted Robert McKennon of McKennon Law Group PC in an article entitled “Insurance Claim Denial Because Airbnb Rental May Have Wider Implications,” by Andy Serbe.  The article discusses a recently filed complaint, and its broader applications regarding insurance coverage exclusions involving rentals and the impact on the potential for insureds to lose important coverage rights when they engage in once only or sporadic rentals of all or parts of their home.  In the article, Mr. McKennon explains that the insurer failed to define the terms in the exclusion, specifically the phrase “other structures reserved for rental.”  Accordingly, those terms were ambiguous as applied to the facts of the case (the complaint …

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Zubillaga v. Allstate Indemnity Co. California Court Rules in Favor of Insured

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Bad Faith, Benefits, Insurance Bad Faith, Insurance Litigation Blog, Life Insurance July 07, 2017

Underlying every insurance contract in California is an implied promise of “good faith and fair dealing,” which requires that the insurer act in good faith when handling the insured’s claim.  If the insurer has a “genuine dispute” as to coverage, then the insurer will typically be found not to have acted in bad faith.  In a recent opinion, the California State Court of Appeal reversed a lower court ruling granting summary judgment in favor of the insurer on the genuine dispute doctrine.  Ultimately, the Court found that the insured raised an issue of material fact regarding whether the insurer reasonably relied on an expert opinion to repeatedly undervalue her claim.  In this article, we cover some of the basics of …

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Top 5 Ways Insurers Commit Insurance Bad Faith in Denying Accidental Death or Dismemberment Claims

Posted in: Accidental Death or Dismemberment, Bad Faith, Benefits, Insurance Litigation Blog, Life Insurance June 28, 2017

The McKennon Law Group PC periodically publishes articles on its Insurance Litigation and Disability Insurance News blogs that deal with frequently asked questions in insurance bad faith, life insurance, long-term disability insurance, annuities, accidental death insurance, ERISA and other areas of law.  To speak with a highly skilled Los Angeles long-term disability insurance lawyer at the McKennon Law Group PC, call (949)387-9595 for a free consultation or go to our website at www.mckennonlawgroup.com and complete our free consultation form today.

If you have an individually purchased insurance policy that provides coverage for accidental death or dismemberment, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) does not govern your claim.  Instead, state law applies to your dispute, including a body of law …

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