News & Publications

Ohio Updates February 28, 2018

Case Bulletin – The Supreme Court of Ohio Rejects “Cumulative-Exposure Theory” in Asbestos Litigation

On January 28, 2018, in Schwartz v. Honeywell International, Inc., 2018 WL 793606 (Ohio 2018), the Supreme Court of Ohio held:  (1) in cases where injuries are alleged from asbestos exposure, a plaintiff must show that exposure to a particular defendant’s product was a “substantial factor” in causing the injury under R.C. 2307.96, and a […]

Pennsylvania Updates February 28, 2018

Case Bulletin – Pennsylvania Supreme Court holds that statute of limitations for an uninsured motorist claim begins to run upon “an alleged breach of a contractual duty” by the insurer.

Erie Ins. Exch. v. Bristol., No. 124 MAP 2016 (Pa., Nov. 22, 2017). In July 2005, Michael Bristol was injured in a hit-and-run accident while working as a lineman for RCC, Inc.  RCC was insured though a policy issued by Erie Insurance that contained an Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage Endorsement.  That endorsement contained an arbitration clause. […]

Zimmer Kunz Results February 7, 2018

ZK Result – Adam Auchey Obtains Defense Win for Insurance Company at Arbitration

Adam Auchey obtained a defense award at arbitration in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.  Plaintiff, an insurance company seeking subrogation of property damage benefits paid to its insured following an accident at an exposition in Pittsburgh, filed suit against the exposition organizer and the property owner where the exposition occurred.  In response, the Defendants filed a counterclaim […]

Pennsylvania Updates January 19, 2018

Case Bulletin – Superior Court Holds Fair Share Act Applies to Strict Liability Claims

On Tuesday, December 28, 2017, the Superior Court ruled that the Fair Share Act, 42 Pa.C.S. § 7102, applies to strict liability cases, including asbestos litigation. Roverano v. John Crane, Inc., ___ A.3d ___, 2017 WL 6761077 (Pa. Super. 2017). In Roverano, the plaintiff alleged exposure to asbestos during his employment from 1971-1981. He was […]

Zimmer Kunz Results January 8, 2018

ZK Result: Attorneys Joseph Selep and Aaron Weiss Obtain Defense Win in False Light / Civil Conspiracy Lawsuit against Fraternity and Fraternity Member

(Upshur County, WV) (November 2017). Zimmer Kunz attorneys Joseph Selep and Aaron Weiss obtained a dismissal for their clients – a fraternity and fraternity member – arising out of an incident at a local university. Plaintiff, a student, had been disciplined by the university following an incident involving a lewd photograph of a female student, […]

Pennsylvania Updates January 8, 2018

Case Bulletin – Third Circuit Upholds Dismissal Based On Lack of Personal Jurisdiction

On September 7, 2017, the Third Circuit upheld a dismissal of a Complaint against Walt Disney Parks and the Walt Disney Company based upon lack of personal jurisdiction. See Barth v. Walt Disney Parks & Resorts U.S., Inc., 2017 WL 3951783 (3d Cir. Sept. 8, 2017) (unpublished). The Plaintiffs sued the Disney Defendants in Philadelphia […]

Pennsylvania Updates January 8, 2018

Case Bulletin – Brandt v. Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., 2017 WL 4271039 (Pa. Com. Pl.) Philadelphia trial court grants Defendants’ motions in limine and excludes two of Plaintiffs’ experts from testifying at trial in talcum powder mesothelioma case.

On September 25, 2017, a Philadelphia trial court (the “Court”) granted Defendants’ motions in limine and precluded two of Plaintiff’s experts from testifying at trial in a talcum powder mesothelioma case Brandt v. Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., 2017 WL 4271039 (Pa. Com. Pl.).  After extensive motions, briefing and several days of testimony in Frye hearings, the […]

Zimmer Kunz Results October 10, 2017

ZK Results – Jury Trial Defense Verdict for Attorney John W. Zotter

On September 28, 2017, an Allegheny County jury returned a defense verdict in favor of Zimmer Kunz clients represented by Shareholder, John W. Zotter.  Plaintiff filed suit against the owner of commercial property and the tenant, a worldwide restaurant chain.  Plaintiff alleged that she sustained a closed head injury when she slipped on ice and […]

West Virginia Updates October 2, 2017

Case Bulletin – Court of Appeals dissolves preliminary injunction halting implementation of West Virginia’s “Workplace Freedom Act.”

Morrisey v. W. Va. AFL-CIO, No. 17-0187, (W. Va., Sept. 15, 2017). In 2016, the West Virginia Legislature enacted the Workplace Freedom Act, which amended labor-relations laws regarding union representation of employees.  The Act restricted the ability of unions to compel employee membership and the payment of union dues from non-union members. Several unions filed […]

Zimmer Kunz Results September 28, 2017

ZK Results – Attorney Ryan Zeli receives verdict in favor of contractor client

On September 28, 2017 shareholder Ryan Zeli received a non-jury verdict from the Court of Common Pleas of Blair County, Pennsylvania in favor of a contractor he represented who struck a transformer while clearing brush on state game lands. The impact with the transformer caused an oil spill and required specialized environmental cleanup. The Plaintiff, […]

Pennsylvania Updates September 28, 2017

Case Bulletin – Pennsylvania Supreme Court holds that “proof of an insurance company’s motive of self-interest or ill-will is not a prerequisite to prevailing in a bad faith claim.”

Rancosky v. Washington Nat. Ins. Co., No. 28 WAP 2016 (Pa., Sep. 28, 2017). This appeal arose from a dispute between Conseco Health Insurance Company and its insured (LeAnn Rancosky) over a cancer insurance policy Rancosky had purchased in connection with her employment as a postal worker.  The dispute centered on the policy’s waiver-of-premium provision, […]

Zimmer Kunz News September 13, 2017

ZK News – Matthew Breneman presents Personal Injury CLE

Shareholder Matthew Breneman recently served as a speaker at a CLE in Pittsburgh entitled “Personal Injury from A to Z”.  His presentation focused in updates on legislation and case law in areas of personal injury litigation.  He also discussed the utilization of medical records and bills in developing a case.  Please contact Mr. Breneman if […]

Zimmer Kunz News August 10, 2017

ZK News – Westfield Defense Days Awards

Zimmer Kunz and Chris Yoskosky are pleased to be the recipients of two Westfield Insurance awards for 2017.  Zimmer Kunz was presented with the Westfield Insurance “Blue Ocean” Award, in recognition of “Value Innovation” and strategic partnership and Chris Yoskosky was the recipient of the 2017 Oars Award for Resolution Through Innovation.  These awards were […]

Zimmer Kunz Results July 14, 2017

ZK Results – Attorney Jeff Ramaley receives verdict in favor of insurance company client

On July 11, 2017 shareholder Jeff Ramaley received a non-jury verdict from the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania in favor of an automobile insurance carrier he represented and against an insured in a dispute as to whether a waiver of UIM coverage was valid.  The insured argued that the waiver was invalid […]

Pennsylvania Updates July 10, 2017

Case Bulletin – Federal District Court holds Minimum Financial Requirement for Diversity Jurisdiction Met in UM Bad Faith Action

On May 18, 2017, Judge Conaboy from the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania held that the minimum requirement of greater than $75,000 to satisfy diversity jurisdiction was met in an Uninsured Motorist (UM) bad faith claim, even where the policy limits were below this threshold. Koerner v. GEICO Cas. Co., […]

Industry News July 7, 2017

Case Bulletin – US Supreme Court Issues Ruling on Jurisdictional Limits

On June 19, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court restricted the jurisdictional reach of state long-arm statutes when it struck down a decision by the California Supreme Court allowing out-of-state residents to join a class action lawsuit against Bristol-Meyer Squib filed in California.  Previously, the California high court ruled in favor of permitting approximately 600 non-Californians […]

Pennsylvania Updates June 30, 2017

Case Bulletin – The Pennsylvania Supreme Court Clarifies the Duty of Informed Consent

On June 20, 2017, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court addressed a trial court’s instructions to the jury related to informed consent in Shinal v. Toms, M.D., 31 MAP 2016 (Pa. 2017), ultimately overruling prior Superior Court holdings.  In doing so, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court held that a physician may not delegate to others his or her […]

Zimmer Kunz News May 31, 2017

ZK News – Zimmer Kunz lawyers named Pennsylvania Super Lawyers for 2017

Zimmer Kunz, PLLC is pleased to announce that Dara DeCourcy, Joseph Butcher, Joseph Selep and George Stewart have again been selected as Pennsylvania Super Lawyers®.  Greg Scheuring has again been recognized as a Pennsylvania Rising Star®.  This is the 9th straight year that Mr. Stewart and Mr. Selep have been recognized as top defense civil […]

West Virginia Updates May 30, 2017

Case Bulletin – West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals Upholds Clear and Unambiguous Exclusion of Coverage in Homeowner’s Policy

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals recently decided a case in which an insured, Robert Nelson, sought declaratory judgment from State Farm stating that he was entitled to coverage under his State Farm’s homeowner policy when his wife negligently shot him. The case went before the Circuit Court of Harrison County, and State Farm […]

West Virginia Updates May 30, 2017

Case Bulletin – The Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia Answers Two Certified Questions Related to Coverage for a Fire in a Vacant Building in Favor of Insurer

On April 26, 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia (the “Court”) issued its decision in Ashraf, M.D. v. State Auto Property and Casualty Insurance Company, 2017 WL 1549582 (W. Va. 2017), holding: (1) that a Vacancy provision in a fire insurance policy which provides that an insurer is allowed to reduce by […]

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