CM Report of Recent Decisions – 2017 Vol. 2

July 25, 2017 / CM Reports

Articles in this report

Sidebar: A Cautionary Tale: The Fine Line Between Practicing Civility In Law And Giving Up Your Client’s Rights

A recent decision by the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, illustrates the fine line attorneys must walk between showing civility and extending courtesies to opposing counsel on
the one hand and unwittingly giving up valuable client rights on the other. The decision in Kantner v. LaDonna Jo Waugh, 2017 IL App (2d) 160848, provides a blueprint on how to navigate this minefield.

U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Abuse Of Discretion Standard Is Applicable To Review Of Decisions Regarding EEOC Subpoenas

In McLane Co. v. EEOC, 197 L.Ed.2d 500 (U.S. 2017), the Supreme Court addressed the appropriate standard of review for challenged EEOC subpoenas. The Court held that the Ninth Circuit improperly reviewed such a challenge de novo when there is a longstanding practice of reviewing administrative subpoenas for abuse of discretion. A district court’s decision on quashing or enforcing an EEOC subpoena should be reviewed for abuse of discretion.

FEHBA Plans Reap The Benefit Of Recent SCOTUS Ruling— FEHBA Preempts State Anti-Subrogation Laws

The United States Supreme Court holds that the express preemption provision of the Federal Employees Health Benefits Act supersedes state law, allowing insurers to recover from a personal injury settlement benefits paid in an FEHBA plan regardless of state anti-subrogation laws. Coventry Health Care of Mo., Inc. v. Nevils, 581 U.S. ___ (2017).

Wisconsin Court Of Appeals Holds That The “Four-Corners Rule” Does Not Apply When An Insurer Provides A Defense To Its Insured

In Stimac Family Trust v. Wisconsin Power and Light Company, No. 2016AP748 (Wis. App.) (recommended for publication), the Wisconsin Court of Appeals discussed whether extrinsic evidence must be considered in making a coverage determination when an insurer provides a defense under a reservation of rights. Specifically, the court analyzed the applicability of the “four-corners rule”, pursuant to which the court’s analysis is limited to the four corners of the complaint.

Claim File Note Found Crucial To Defense Obligation

An insurer’s duty to defend typically is said to turn, first and foremost, on the allegations of the underlying complaint. On occasion, however, courts look outside the four corners of the complaint to extrinsic evidence to determine if a defense obligation
exists.

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