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Buffalo New York Insurance Defense Blog

Steps To Avoid Premises Liability Claims

Winter is in full force in the Northeast. That means icier sidewalks, parking lots and entry ways. This also means it is a good time for business owners to take a look at their insurance policies. Is it time to expand coverage? Do you really understand what your policy covers in case a patron were to slip-and-fall entering your business? What happens if someone does make a premises liability claim against your business? Asking these questions now rather than later, is just one of the many preventative measures you can take.

3 potential defenses to supplemental underinsured motorist claims

New York does not require drivers to purchase supplemental underinsured motorist (SUM) coverage. However, many drivers still opt for a SUM policy as a safety precaution. Its important benefits can give the driver a chance to recover the full amount of damages in a crisis.

However, as with any policy, there are limits to what an insurer is liable to provide. Individual policies vary, but there are a few conflicts that are common to SUM claims.


Hagelin Spencer is proud to announce the addition of Meg Organek to our shareholder ranks alongside Michael Hagelin and Sean Spencer as of January 1, 2019.

The announcement was made at the recent firm holiday party held at the Theodore Roosevelt Museum. The attached photo shows Meg being presented with a crystal bowl to commemorate her achievement.

What is the statute of limitations on liability claims?

On occasion, companies and their defense attorneys facing liability claims may find that their options for a defense are slim. Contributory negligence may not work in your favor and assumed risk is not an option. But what about the statute of limitations?

What is a statute of limitations and how can one use it as a defense in New York?

Product liability: assumption of risk

When a product injures a consumer, the consumer may think that they automatically deserve compensation from company or business that manufactured or sold the product. Fortunately for manufacturers, as well as their defense attorneys, that is not always the case.

Assumption of risk is a commonly used affirmative defense in product liability lawsuits. When you can prove that How does a plaintiff assume risk?

Are construction companies liable for employee injury?

Construction companies and their insurance defense attorneys are aware that construction jobsites may be more dangerous for employees than a typical office setting. Because of this, employers and their attorneys may wonder when they are liable for injuries that occur while their employees are at work.

It makes sense that employers may want to know this, as there were nearly 1,000 fatal construction workplace injuries in 2017, and many more nonfatal injuries. Why are construction jobsite injuries so high? Who is liable for employee injury?

What Airbnb’s Host Protection Insurance Actually Covers

More and more travelers are deciding to forego the option of a standard hotel and looking into a rising trend: the Airbnb stay. Instead of the usual option of turndown service or continental breakfast, travelers for both leisure and business are considering larger options of unique condos, luxury houses and even villas. There is even the option of renting an Airbnb for an extended period of time.

But what does this mean for the “hosts” who are opening up their properties to complete strangers? Becoming an Airbnb host certainly does not provide any premises liability immunity. But are guests required to provide their own liability insurance? Or is Airbnb? That is where the liability coverage issue lies.

Self-Driving Cars: The Future For The Insurance Industry

The notion of a self-driving car is no longer a far-fetched fantasy or some scene from a movie about the future. The reality of vehicle autonomy is very much a technology of today. Self-driving cars are now beyond the makings of just Tesla, as a British company recently announced the development of a new chip. The Arm Cortex-A76AE is said to be a game-changer, possibly bringing fully self-driving cars as early as 2027. The company boasts the chip could be the beginning of the future for full autonomous technology with safety being its number one priority.

However, even when driver safety is at the forefront of this sweeping technology, there is always room for error and then of course accidents and injuries. What does the potential for a major increase in self-driving cars mean for the insurance industry? Will there be just as much of an impact on insurers as it will be for drivers?

Premises liability defenses: part 2

This is the second in a series that is looking at the different types of defense tactics a property owner and their insurance defense team may use while battling a premises liability case. In the first post, we discussed the assumed risk defense. Now, we will examine contributory negligence.

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Hagelin Spencer LLC has offices conveniently located in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, and Garden City. While our firm is large enough to have the resources necessary to satisfy even the largest corporate client, our attorneys do not lose sight of the importance of building a strong relationship with everyone we represent.

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