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Recent Articles

Judge awards $0 after Plaintiffs’ counsel seeks $1.1 million in attorneys’ fees after winning bad faith case

In a scathing, 100-page opinion from the The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the Court reiterated that the decision whether to assess attorneys’ fees, costs, and interest under the Pennsylvania bad faith statute is completely within the discretion of the trial court. The court noted that although it may assess attorneys' fees upon a finding of bad faith, it is not required to do so and the party seeking attorneys’ fees bears the burden of demonstrating the reasonableness of the fees, thus denying any fee award after plaintiffs' counsel petitions for $1.1 million in attorneys' fees. 

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Filing a National Flood Insurance Claim in State Court is No Better Than Filing it in the Kitchen Drawer

In Woodson v. Allstate Ins. Co., the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently opined that a Claimant’s action was time-barred when he filed a breach of contract and bad faith action in state court within one day of the applicable statute of limitations, notwithstanding a federal statute that required all claims made under their policy to be filed in a federal district court.  The Court concluded that the federal authority governing the National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”) preempts state law, but it left open the question as to whether the NIFP preempts all state authorities within its scope or merely conflicting state authorities. In the wake of Woodson, insurers and underwriters would be prudent to carefully assess the interplay between federal and state statutes and regulations as the governing authority of their policies.

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Licensed Insurance Companies Exempt from Maryland Income Tax

Are insurers licensed to do business in Maryland subject to state income tax on profits derived from sources other than insurance policy premiums? Maryland Tax Court ruled that an insurer was not subject to Maryland income tax, regardless of the source of its profits in National Indemnity Company v. Comptroller of the Treasury, Dkt. No. 14-IN-OO-0433 (Md. Tax Ct. April 24, 2015). 

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Condominiums May Not Opt Out Of Maryland's Mandatory Insurance Provisions

Under Section 11-114 of the Maryland Condominium Act, Condominium Associations must maintain property insurance on the entire condominium including units, excepting improvements and betterments installed by the Unit Owner. Condominiums may not opt out of Maryland's Mandatory Insurance Coverage provisions, and any changes in statue requirements must be amended by the Legislature, arguments published in a recent court opinion following a declaratory judgment action in Elasik, et al. v. Queen's Landing Council of Unit Owners, Inc.

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Past Articles

Increasing Risk of Data Breaches Prompt New Legal Requirements for Maryland Businesses

Although recent data breaches involving large corporations such as Equifax, eBay, Target and Yahoo…

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GOP Tax Bill Proposes Estate Tax Repeal…Hooray?

On November 2, the GOP released its tax reform bill, known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (H. R. 1),…

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Maryland Condominium and Homeowner Associations Face New Rules for Amendment of Governing Documents

A new law passed by the Maryland General Assembly (House Bill 789, Chapter 480) and signed by Governor…

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Judge awards $0 after Plaintiffs’ counsel seeks $1.1 million in attorneys’ fees after winning bad fa

In a scathing, 100-page opinion from the The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania,…

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Impact of Overtime Regulations on Employers After DOL Files Reply Brief

Employers now have a clear picture of the Department of Labor’s position on its ability to…

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