Legal News

Gasquet can be avoided with careful policy wording says the Fifth Circuit

In a recent opinion the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, applying Texas law, held that an excess carrier’s coverage was not triggered where the primary carrier settled claims against its insured for less than policy limits. In Martin Resource Mgmt. Corp. v. Axis Ins. Co., 803 F.3d 766 (5th Cir. 2015), Martin Resource Management … Read More »

Fifth Circuit finds amount in controversy met for NORM exposure claims in mass action removed under CAFA

The Fifth Circuit recently handed down another decision on issues of federal subject matter jurisdiction under CAFA for pollution claims. In Robertson v. Exxon Mobil Corp., No. 15-30920, 2015 WL 9592499 (5th Cir. Dec. 31, 2015) over one hundred individual Plaintiff’s filed suit in Orleans Parish Civil District Court against a host of defendants for … Read More »

Eastern District of Louisiana Finds Jones Act Employer Does Not Receive Benefit of Write Downs Negotiated by Third-Party Financier with Plaintiff’s Medical Providers

In Howard v. Offshore Liftboats, LLC, C/A 13-4811, 2016 WL 232252 (E.D. La. Jan. 1, 2016), plaintiff filed suit against Offshore Liftboats (OLB) claiming injuries arising from a failed personnel basket transfer and demanding payment of maintenance and cure. A dispute arose between OLB and the plaintiff as to the cost of the medical care … Read More »

Duncan & Sevin Attorneys Win Summary Judgment on McCorpen Defense

Kelley Sevin and Tripp DuBose recently obtained summary judgment before Judge Jane Triche Milazzo of the Eastern District of Louisiana on behalf of a Jones Act employer dismissing a seaman’s claims for maintenance and cure pursuant to the McCorpen doctrine. Under McCorpen v. Central Gulf S.S. Corp., 396 F.2d 547 (5th Cir. 1968) and its … Read More »

Duncan & Sevin Attorneys Successfully Remove Chemical Release Class Action to Federal Court

Duncan & Sevin attorneys Chip Duncan and Tripp DuBose were recently successful in establishing federal subject matter jurisdiction in a class action removed from Louisiana state court. In Rowell, et al v. Shell Chemical, L.P., et al, No. 14-2392, 2015 WL 7306435 (E.D.La. Nov. 18, 2015) a class action suit was filed on behalf of … Read More »

Cal Dive v. Schmidt – Oral argument heard on upsetting an allegedly fraudulent settlement

Andrew Schmidt received a multi-million dollar settlement after a diving accident accident where he reported a brain injury. According to Mr. Schmidt, he was unable to do anything more than lie down for more than two to three hours a day. The life-care plan involved 24/7 care. Surveillance produced nothing for two and a half … Read More »

Recent case supports significant damages awards in Texas

Williams v. Diamond – $8.5m compensatory damages award to Jones Act seaman from Texas jury, affirmed by Texas First Circuit Willie Williams was working on a Diamond Offshore rig on January 7, 2008. Trying to repair elevators on the rig, he suddenly felt pain in his back. He got off the rig, and now seven … Read More »

Judge Morgan Renders Defense Verdict in Personnel Basket Case

In a recent opinion Judge Susie Morgan of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, the court highlighted the importance of retaining the proper expert in cases involving specialized offshore activities, like crane operations. In Richardson v. Seacor Liftboats, LLC, C/A 14-1712, 2015 WL 4397134 (E.DLa. Aug. 17, 2015) the plaintiff alleged … Read More »

Coverage Against Negligence Claim Precluded by Breach of Contract Exclusion in Construction Defect Action

In a recent opinion the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana found coverage of a negligence claim arising from allegedly defective construction work barred by a breach of contract exclusion found in the contractor’s CGL policy. Hanover Insurance Company v. Plaquemines Parish Government, C/A 12-1680, 2015 WL 1268314 (E.D.La. March 19, 2015) … Read More »

Jefferson v. Baywater and Meche v. Key Energy – M&C back in the spotlight

Two recent Louisiana federal court decisions demonstrate the importance of investigating and documenting a Jones Act seaman’s medical conditions. Failure to properly investigate a seaman’s medical claim may leave a Jones Act employer vulnerable to the kind of maintenance award handed down in Jefferson v. Baywater Drilling, LLC, CIV.A. 14-1711, 2015 WL 365526 (E.D. La. … Read More »