June 29, 2020 – New York Law Firm Files Class Action
A major law firm located in the heart of New York City is one of the plaintiffs in a proposed class action filed against Hartford Casualty Insurance Company this week.
The 26-page complaint out of New York claims Hartford denied the plaintiffs’ property damage claim after the firm was forced to close due to government orders and the presence of COVID-19 in its building.
The plaintiffs argue that the insurer’s denial reflects a broader scheme among those in the insurance industry to refuse to pay for COVID-19-related damages. As the complaint puts it:
“The insurance industry appears to be taking a uniform approach to the current pandemic: deny coverage even when the policy they drafted and offered to insureds, and the policy paid for by the insureds, does not contain an exclusion for pandemic-related or virus-related losses.”
June 19, 2020 – Hartford Hit with Another Case in Connecticut
The Hartford Financial Services Group and Twin City Fire Insurance have been hit with another proposed class action lawsuit, this time out of Connecticut.
Filed by a Texas law firm and the owner of the property out of which the business operates, the 20-page case claims the defendants wrongfully denied the plaintiffs’ property damage claim after COVID-19 forced the office to close.
June 3, 2020 – Fitness Center Files Case in Alabama
An Alabama fitness center has filed another proposed class action against The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., Hartford Fire Insurance Company, and Twin City Fire Insurance Company.
According to the suit, the defendants wrongfully denied the business’s insurance claim for losses sustained to its property as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Under the Policy, Defendants promised to cover these losses, and is obligated to pay for them,” the complaint states. “But in blatant breach of its contractual obligations, Defendants have failed to pay for these losses.”
Another lawsuit has been filed against The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. and Hartford Casualty Insurance Company over their alleged denial of COVID-19-related damage claims.
Filed by a law firm specializing in bankruptcy litigation, the 37-page case out of Georgia claims Hartford wrongly denied claims under the firm’s business income and other coverages even though the policies at issue contained no exclusions for losses stemming from a virus.
Hartford Financial faces another proposed class action in Georgia over its alleged denial of policyholders’ COVID-19-related damage claims.
A Georgia dentist says in the lawsuit that Hartford denied his claim even though his insurance policy provided certain types of coverage that should have been triggered after his business was forced to close due to the ongoing pandemic and resulting government orders.
The lawsuit also names the following Hartford subsidiaries as defendants:
Hartford Fire Insurance Company
Twin City Fire Insurance Company
Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company
Hartford Casualty Insurance Company
Hartford Insurance Company of The Southeast
Hartford Underwriters Insurance Company
Hartford Insurance Company of The Midwest
Hartford Insurance Company of Illinois
Sentinel Insurance Company, Ltd.
Property and Casualty Insurance Company of Hartford
Hartford Financial and Sentinel now face a proposed class action out of New York over the insurers’ alleged refusal to pay damage claims for COVID-19-related business interruptions.
Filed by a New York catering business, the lawsuit looks to represent the following affected policyholders, as well as a New York-only subclass:
“All entities in the United States that have entered into standard all-risk commercial property insurance policies with Hartford, where such policies provide Business Income, Civil Authority, and Extra Expense coverages and do not exclude coverage for pandemics, and who have suffered losses due to measures put in place by civil authorities to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. has been hit with another proposed class action lawsuit, this time filed in California.
Hartford subsidiary Sentinel Insurance Company Ltd. is also named as a defendant in the lawsuit, which alleges the two insurers have refused to pay policyholders’ claims for losses stemming from COVID-19-related business interruptions.
The 29-page suit looks to represent both a nationwide class of affected policyholders and a California subclass.
Four Pennsylvania businesses allege in a proposed class action that Hartford Underwriters Insurance Company and The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. have wrongfully failed to pay claims for covered damages caused by business closures stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The plaintiffs, who operate full-service restaurants forced to close for on-site dining due to government mandates, allege their policies contained endorsements for “Business Income and Extra Expense” and “Business Income for Civil Authority Actions.” The suit alleges that although the all-risk policies purported to cover lost business income, normal operating expenses, extended business income during a “period of restoration,” and extra expenses incurred due to the forced suspension of business operations, the defendants have, “on a wide scale and uniform basis,” denied claims stemming from COVID-19-related business disruptions.
According to the suit, the plaintiffs could no longer operate within their physical locations after Pennsylvania’s governor mandated the closure of all non-essential businesses on March 19, 2020 due to the novel coronavirus crisis. The plaintiffs claim the order triggered coverage under their Hartford insurance policies, stressing that the policies’ exclusion of coverage for losses stemming from a “virus, bacterium or other microorganism that induces or is capable of inducing physical distress, illness or disease” is not applicable given the plaintiffs’ loss of business was an effect of the closure orders rather than the presence of the virus in their restaurants.