Supreme Court of Texas Blog: Legal Issues Before the Texas Supreme Court

No. 15-0891
TAMES

IN RE DEEPWATER HORIZON

The Court requested full merits briefing on December 8, 2015. File Closed

In the news...

Tracking 1 article about this case.

February 12, 2016

Deepwater Horizon case set for March argument; no opinions or grants [Feb. 12, 2016]

from SCOTXblog

No Opinions

The Court has not issued any opinions in this case.

 

Court of Appeals

None

Trial Court

None

Docket Entries

Date Event Outcome  
2016-04-08 Case Stored  
2016-04-08 Certified Question disposed   Withdrawn
2016-03-28 Notice received  
2016-03-04 Miscellaneous motion disposed. See Remarks.   Filing granted
2016-03-01 Letter Filed  
2016-03-01 Miscellaneous Motion  
2016-02-29 Call received  
2016-02-17 Oral Argument Submission Form from Attorney received  
2016-02-17 Corrected Brief (Appellant in case)  
2016-02-17 Oral Argument Submission Form from Attorney received  
2016-02-16 Motion to correct disposed of   Filing granted
2016-02-15 Motion to Correct filed  
2016-02-12 Case set for oral argument   Case set for oral argument
2016-02-11 Reply Brief (Appellant in case)  
2016-01-27 Brief on the Merits (Appellee in case)  
2016-01-07 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2016-01-07 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2016-01-07 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-07 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-07 Brief on the Merits (Appellant in case)  
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-06 Pro hac vice motion disposed   Filing granted
2016-01-04 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2016-01-04 Pro hac vice motion filed  
2015-12-29 Notice of Appearance  
2015-12-14 Call received  
2015-12-08 Brief on the Merits Requested  
2015-12-08 Phone call from Clerk's Office  
2015-12-04 Certified Question accepted
2015-12-04 Case set for oral argument   The date and time for oral argument are yet to be determined.
2015-12-04 Certified Question disposed Certified Question accepted
2015-11-20 Notice requesting filing fee  
2015-11-19 Certified Question filed  
2015-11-19 Case Record Filed  

Parties

Party Counsel Role
Liberty Insurance Underwriters, Incorporated
Catherine Giarrusso
Mr. Christopher W. Martin
Mr. Kevin G. Cain
Mr. Robert G. Dees
Mr. Levon G. Hovnatanian
Mr. David T. Moran
Mr. Sean D. Jordan
Ms. Judy Y. Barrasso
Appellee
Cameron International Corporation
Jeffrey Korn
Abigayle Clary McDowell Farris
Phillip Wittmann
Carmelite M. Bertaut
Mitchell J. Auslander
Mr. Russell S. Post
Appellant
 
 

Does a claim for wrongful denial of insurance benefits require independent damages?

insurance

This is one of many cases percolating in the Fifth Circuit about the Deepwater Horizon (BP) oil spill. Here, the dispute is between various insurers over some subrogation and indemnification arrangements, internal to the complex stack of insurance that might apply to the project.

The Fifth Circuit resolved some of those questions under what it found to be well-settled law, and certified one other question to the Texas Supreme Court on a point that it found to be unsettled in Texas:

Whether, to maintain a cause of action under Chapter 541 of the Texas Insurance Code against an insurer that wrongfully withheld policy benefits, an insured must allege and prove an injury independent from the denied policy benefits?

The Fifth Circuit explains the uncertainty as being about whether Vail v. Texas Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Co., 754 S.W.2d 129 (Tex. 1988), remains good law. That case would answer the question "no." Two decades later, a different panel of the Fifth Circuit analyzed intervening Texas authority and held that Vail was no longer controlling on this point. Great American Insurance Co. v. AFS/IBEX Financial Services, Inc., 612 F.3d 800, 808 & n.1 (5th Cir. 2010). In now certifying this question to SCOTX for an authoritative answer, the panel observes that some intermediate Texas courts, contrary to the Fifth Circuit's conclusion in Great American, still treat Vail as controlling law.

See also:

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