CM Report of Recent Decisions (2011v3)
2011 Volume 3
A summary of significant recent developments in the law focusing on substantive issues of litigation and featuring analysis and commentary on special points of interest. The PDF version is now interactive.
Articles in this report
We wish to report on several decisions that have recently been issued which we believe you will find of interest in your business and practice.
Arbitrators' Independence–The English Supreme Court's Decision In Jivraj v. Hashwani  UKSC 40
The English Supreme Court recently decided that arbitrators are not to be considered as employees of the parties to an arbitration, but as independent "quasi-judicial adjudicators." As a consequence, the Court also eliminated a cause of widespread concern that had arisen in the arbitration community and which might have rendered London an undesirable arbitration venue.
California Appellate Court Applies MacKinnon–For The First Time–To A Property Insurance Dispute, And Limits The Pollution Exclusion To Environmental Pollution
The California Supreme Court held back in 2003 that the standard pollution exclusion in a comprehensive general liability policy applied only to events "commonly regarded as environmental pollution" and not "ordinary acts of negligence involving harmful substances."
Climate Change Insurance Coverage: Round One To Insurers
The Virginia Supreme Court decided the first climate change liability insurance coverage case and held that there was no covered occurrence and that therefore the trial court properly dismissed the insured's claim for coverage.
D&O Coverage Applies In Bankruptcy, Despite Exclusions
It is not unusual for coverage issues to be litigated in a bankruptcy context after the policyholder has either sought bankruptcy protection or been forced into bankruptcy.
First Of Its Kind NLRB Facebook Decision: NLRB Judge Finds Employer Unlawfully Disciplined Employees' Facebook Conversations
An NLRB Administrative Law Judge in New York found that an employer unlawfully discharged five employees after they posted comments on Facebook in response to a co-worker's criticism that employees did not work enough.