Gene Murphy

Gene Murphy

Gene Murphy concentrates his practice in liability and property insurance coverage matters, as well as products liability defense. He has focused on the evaluation, litigation, and resolution of a diverse range of coverage disputes, including mediations, arbitrations, and trials. In addition to his work in Florida, he has appeared before various state and federal courts throughout the country, including courts in Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, and Texas.

Gene is a member of the Trial Lawyers Section of the Florida Bar Association, the Defense Research Institute, and the New York State Bar Association.

Gene received his J.D. from Fordham University School of Law, his LL.M. in environmental law from Pace University, and his B.A. in political science from Queens College, CUNY.

Read Gene’s rc.com bio.

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Florida’s 3rd DCA Continues to Reverse Trial Court Statute of Limitations Rulings

In Linares v. Universal Property and Cas. Ins. Co., 2014 Fla. App. LEXIS 10168, (Fla. 3rd DCA, July 2, 2014), the Court reversed the trial court’s summary judgment ruling in favor of the insurer (“Universal”), which determined that the homeowners’ breach of contract action was barred by the five-year statute of limitations period. The 3rd … Continue Reading

Florida Federal Court Applies Statutory Definition of “Structural Damage” in Sinkhole Case

Over the last decade, policyholders and insurers have actively litigated the meaning and scope of “structural damage” under the Florida statutory sinkhole scheme. In 2011, in an effort to resolve the dispute, the Florida Legislature adopted a five-part definition of “structural damage” to be applied when interpreting insurance policies providing coverage for sinkhole losses. Fla. … Continue Reading

Efficient Proximate Cause In Florida: 2nd DCA Reverses Judgment and Remands for New Trial Requiring Application of Efficient Proximate Cause Theory

The courts have historically grappled with the controlling rule of law in cases involving multiple causes of loss in the property insurance coverage context. The majority of jurisdictions typically employ the doctrine of efficient proximate cause: coverage is afforded if the predominant cause of loss is a covered cause of loss. The minority of jurisdictions, … Continue Reading

General Contractor Overhead and Profit Ruling Issued by Florida Supreme Court

The Florida Supreme Court recently joined numerous other jurisdictions holding that general contractor overhead and profit should be included in an estimate on a property insurance claim when, based on the unique facts of the claim, it is reasonably likely that the insured will need to use a general contractor in completing the repairs. In … Continue Reading

Florida Appellate Court Upholds “Other Structures” Policy Exclusions In Absence Of Conflict With Condominium Act

In Citizens Property Ins. Corp. v. River Manor Condominium Assoc., Inc., 2013 Fla. App. LEXIS 5729 (4th DCA April 10, 2013), the court primarily addressed a potential conflict between a policy exclusion and insurance coverage requirements of the Condominium Act, Fla. Stat. 718.111(11)(b). Ultimately, the court reversed the trial court’s summary judgment ruling in favor … Continue Reading

Florida Late Notice Law: Florida Appellate Court Grants Insurer Motion for Rehearing, Withdraws Previous Ruling, And Affirms Trial Court’s Grant of Summary Judgment To Insurer

In 1500 Coral Towers Condominium Association, Inc. v. Citizens Property Ins.Co., No. 3D12-132 (3rd DCA April 3, 2013), upon rehearing and de novo review, Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal withdrew its February 6, 2013 late notice ruling (see our analysis of that decision in the February 11 posting), and affirmed the lower court’s grant of … Continue Reading

Sinkhole Coverage Not Required in Florida for Surplus Lines Insurers: Federal Court Rules Florida Sinkhole Statute Inapplicable To Surplus Lines Insurers

Surplus lines insurance is typically provided to insureds who, for various reasons, are not able to secure insurance from an “admitted” or “authorized” carrier in a state. Legal issues surrounding surplus line coverage sometimes involve whether or not a particular statute applies to surplus lines carriers or only “admitted” or “authorized” carriers within a state. … Continue Reading

Proofs of Loss in Florida: Second District Court of Appeal Reverses Summary Judgment for Insurer Based On Waiver and Partial Compliance

Typical property policies require the insured to cooperate with the insurer in the investigation of the claim, and specifically require the insured to submit a sworn proof of loss within a certain time period (in some policies this applies only where the insurer requests a proof of loss). If the insured partially complies, i.e., provides … Continue Reading

Sworn Proof of Loss is a Condition Precedent, and Florida’s 5th DCA Applies Presumption of Prejudice Rule

Typical property policies require the insured to cooperate with the insurer in the investigation of the claim, and specifically require the insured to submit a sworn proof of loss, provide timely responses to an insurer’s request for documentation related to the claim and, if requested, submit to examinations under oath. If the insured fails to … Continue Reading

Attorneys’ Fees and Prejudgment Interest Recovery in Appraisal Context: Florida Federal Court Determines Attorneys’ Fees Are Appropriate, but Prejudgment Interest Is Not

The ability to recover extra-contractual damages such as attorneys’ fees, costs and interest in insurance coverage cases varies widely in jurisdictions nationwide. The Southern District of Florida’s recent decision in Sands on the Ocean addresses the recovery of attorneys’ fees and prejudgment interest in an appraisal context in Florida. In Florida, a statute generally provides … Continue Reading

Florida Appellate Court Upholds Appraisal Rights, Finding Lower Court Improperly Relied Upon Administrative Rule

This case generally reaffirms the commitment of the Florida courts to contractual appraisal rights in the absence of waiver. In First Protective Ins. Co., v. Schneider Family Partnership, 2012 Fla. App. LEXIS 19701 (Fla. 2nd DCA, Nov. 14, 2012), the court addressed a claim for insurance coverage for property damage sustained during Hurricane Wilma. The … Continue Reading

Appraisal Rights Upheld in Face of Premature Litigation, Notwithstanding Florida Statutory Mediation Notice Requirements

Consistent with its general support of Alternate Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) procedures, Florida promulgated a mediation procedure for property insurance claims. Fla. Stat. § 627.7015 (2010). This statute contains a provision which, should the insurer fail to comply with mediation notice requirements, can result in a waiver of the insurer’s appraisal rights under the insurance policy. … Continue Reading
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