My brother Tim Kevane’s law article on… something called the Viking Pump decision

I have little idea of the technicalities here, but I thought that any paragraph starting with “bitter irony” should be highlighted.

The bitter irony of the noncumulation provision is that an insured will now be able to designate the tower on a particular policy year to absorb the responsibility for a covered loss that spans multiple years or even decades. That is a grim forecast for the insurer adjusting a loss that took place outside its policy period, and seems especially harsh in light of the Massachusetts Supreme Court’s conclusion that no “reasonable” insured could ever have expected a single insurance year to cover an entire multiyear loss (subject to policy terms). [9] The exposure resulting from Viking Pump will impact underwriting since it is completely different from pro rata. Premiums may be reassessed, which would only reinforce the disincentive for insureds to procure comprehensive coverage — the opposite, and salutary effect of the pro rata approach. [10] In the alternative, a potential revision to the noncumulation clause that responds to Viking Pump is not inconceivable, such as referring to an injury “as may be initially allocated” or deleting any sugges – tion of the indivisibility of the injury, to bolster the method used in Olin III.

Source: VikingPumpRebels_Kevane_Law360_5-18-16.pdf

About mkevane

Economist at Santa Clara University and Director of Friends of African Village Libraries.
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