Carbon monoxide detector

Washington Rejects Insurers’ Clever Attempts to Draft Around the Efficient Proximate Cause Rule

The Washington Supreme Court recently issued a new decision that restricts insurance companies with regard to their longstanding attempts to exclude pollution-related losses and draft around Washington’s “efficient proximate cause” rule. Xia v. Probuilders Specialty Ins. Co., et al. In Xia v. Probuilders Specialty Ins. Co., et al., plaintiff Xia became sick from carbon monoxide exposure almost immediately after purchasing … Continue reading »

Washington Supreme Court Insulates Insurance Companies from IFCA Lawsuits Based on Regulatory Violations

The Washington Supreme Court issued a recent decision that significantly limits the scope of claims an insured can make against its insurer under the Washington Insurance Fair Conduct Act (IFCA).  In Perez-Crisantos v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., No. 92267-5, WL 448991 (February 2, 2017), the Court insulated insurers that violate insurance regulations by ruling that the insured could … Continue reading »

Victory for Physicians Defending against Medical Malpractice Actions

In Fergen v. Sestero, Washington’s Supreme Court recently handed an important victory to physicians defending medical malpractice actions.  The ruling involved the exercise of judgment instruction, which reminds juries that if a physician exercises the reasonable care and skill generally required by his or her position, making the wrong choice when choosing between alternate treatments or diagnoses does not make … Continue reading »

Insurer May Not Sue the Insured’s Attorney for Malpractice

A common issue in insurance coverage matters is the nature of the relationship between the attorney hired to represent the insured and the insurer who pays for the attorneys’ services.  A recent case decided by the Supreme Court of Washington held that an insurer who hires an attorney for their insured cannot later sue that attorney for malpractice. In Stewart … Continue reading »

Trust

Washington’s Supreme Court Makes It More Difficult to Dismiss Employee Discrimination Claims

Washington’s Supreme Court recently ruled that even if an employer had a legitimate reason for terminating an employee, the employee can still prevail in a discrimination lawsuit if discrimination played a substantial factor in motivating the employer.  The court also ruled that a decision maker’s general comments in a public speech about a need to attract younger workers could be … Continue reading »