The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is scheduled to hear oral argument this week in Pittsburgh on two insurance cases: Babcock & Wilcox v. American Nuclear Insurers, andLiberty Mutual Ins. Co. v. Domtar Paper Co. In Babcock & Wilcox, the Supreme Court granted a petition for allowance of appeal on the following issue: “Does a policy holder forfeit its right to insurance coverage by settling an underlying and covered claim without its insurer’s consent, where the insurer is defending subject to a reservation of rights to disclaim coverage, the settlement is at arm’s length, is fair and is reasonable, and the insurer has failed to offer any amount of settlement?” Babcock & Wilcox v. American Nuclear Insurers, 84 A.3d 699 (Pa. Jan. 24, 2014) (granting petition for allowance of appeal). In Domtar Paper the Supreme Court granted a petition for allowance on the following issue: “Does Section 319 of the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, 77 P.S.§ 671, allow the employer/insurer to step into the shoes of the insured employee to subrogate against the tortfeasor?” Liberty Mutual Ins. Co. v. Domtar Paper Co., 92 A.3d 809 (Pa. May 29, 2014) (granting petition for allowance of appeal).
An article by Max Mitchell in The Legal Intelligencer contains a nice discussion of those cases in advance of the argument sessions: The Legal Intelligencer–Multimillion-Dollar Insurance Cases Top Justices’ Docket