WILLAMETTE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF LAW*
Law 218: Insurance Law
Professor William R. Long
[*For 2005 Syllabus, click here.]
Insurance law is a growing and significant area in legal study and practice. Though derived from contract law, insurance law has potentially an effect on more transactions and interactions of daily life than any other area of law. Business and litigation attorneys alike need to be aware of insurance underwriting, regulation, contract interpretation and the way that insurance availability enters into litigation strategy. Because insurance law is derived from contract law, we will focus considerable attention on reading and construing insurance contracts from personal and business life. In this two-credit class, we will not cover some topics in insurance law (unemployment insurance, workers' compensation, health law), which are covered in other courses in the Willamette curriculum. In addition, I will explore the way in which the Internet can be used in classroom instruction. You will have an opportunity if you desire, however, to explore an area of insurance law not covered in class through a term paper.
INSTRUCTOR: Professor William R. Long, Office 452. Phone is (503) 370-6411. Email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
CLASS MEETING: W and F, 9:10-10:10 a.m., Room .
CLASS EXPECTATIONS, REQUIREMENTS and GRADING: Regular attendance, informed participation, ability and interest in interacting with the reading and each other and completion either of a two-hour (closed-book) final examination or a term paper. The paper will be between 15-20 pages and cover some aspect of insurance law, preferably a topic in health law. I retain the right to deduct a gradation for missing more than three classes. If you add the class late, the classes you missed before adding the class will be counted as absences.
Since this is a class with more than 20 students currently enrolled, the grading rules adopted by the faculty for grade distribution and low grades apply. The policy provides, "In all second-and third-year classes with an enrollment of 20 students or more [we currently have 23]: (a) 10-15% of the grades shall be a C and below; and (b) at least 5% of the grades shall be below C." The mean grade for the course will be within the range of 2.80 - 3.00.
REQUIRED: Abraham, Kenneth S., Insurance Law and Regulation: Cases and Materials (4th ed., Foundation Press, 2005) ("Abraham").
RECOMMENDED: Jerry II, Robert H., Understanding Insurance Law (3d ed., LexisNexis, Matthew Bender, 2002) ("Jerry"). I do not expect you to read Jerry and I will not test you on his book, but it is a fine, lucid treatise covering the topics of the course in great detail.
January 11 Introduction, Warranties, and Representations
READING: Abraham, 1-12.
January 13 Misrepresentation and Concealment
READING: Abraham, 16-26.
THE INSURANCE CONTRACT--GENERAL PRINCIPLES
January 18 Construing Ambiguities
READING: Abraham, 36-49.
January 20 Reasonable Expectations
READING: Abraham, 50-61.
January 25 The Role of the Agent
READING: Abraham, 61-74.
January 27 State Regulation of Insurance Policies
READING: Familiarize yourself with the web site of the Oregon Insurance Division; I will give a worksheet for you to fill in for the assignment.
February 1 Discrimination in Policies
READING: Abraham, 124-134.
February 3 Other State Regulation
READING: Abraham, 134-141.
TYPE I: FIRE AND PROPERTY INSURANCE
February 8 Reading a Policy; Insurable Interest
READING: Abraham, 172-196 (skim policy--know subjects it covers), 197-203.
February 10 Business Interruption, Subrogation
READING: Abraham, 205-211, 244-250.
February 15 Exclusions and Exceptions: Dual Causation, Increase of Hazards
READING: Abraham, 214-224.
February 17 Increased Risk, Measure of Recovery
READING: Abraham, 224-229, 237-244.
TYPE II: LIFE INSURANCE
February 22 The Life Insurance Policy; Insurable Interest
READING: Abraham, 276-296 (skim policy), 297-306.
February 24 Changing Beneficiaries; Construing the Policy
READING: Abraham, 309-323.
March 1 Incontestability; Limitations of Risk
READING: Abraham, 338-347.
March 3 Bad Faith in Oregon
READING: The Goddard case in Oregon, Goddard v. Farmers Insurance , 173 Or App 633 (2001), and the 2005 decision, found on the Oregon Court of Appeals web site.
TYPE III: COMMERCIAL GENERAL LIABILITY INSURANCE
March 8 Reading the Policy; The Insuring Agreement
READING: Abraham 441-459 (The CGL policy), 461-469
March 10 The Trigger and Allocation of Coverage
READING: Abraham, 480-491.
March 15 Triggers of Coverage II; Number of Occurrences
READING: Abraham, 491-508
March 17 Exclusions and Conditions I
READING: Abraham, 509-520.
March 22 Exclusions and Conditions II
READING: Abraham, 522-527, 529-538.
March 24 The Pollution Exclusion
READING: Abraham, 540-551.
MARCH 27-31 SPRING BREAK
TYPE IV: AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE
April 5 The Automobile Insurance Policy; Compulsory Insurance
READING: Abraham, 643-656 (skim policy), 657-664.
April 7 The Policy; Omnibus Clauses
READING: Abraham, 664-675.
April 12 Notice and Cooperation; Comprehensive and Collision
READING: Abraham, 676-682, 697-706.
April 14 Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
READING: Abraham, 714-723.
Copyright © 2004-2007 William R. Long