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Immigration and Insurance Decisions

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By FindLaw Staff on March 09, 2010 2:40 PM

The Eighth Circuit decided two insurance disputes and one concerning the denial of an asylum application.

HealthEast Bethesda Hosp. v. United Commercial Travelers of Am., No. 08-3665, was an action for breach of an insurance settlement contract.  The court of appeals affirmed summary judgment for defendant, on the grounds that 1) defendant was not an unsophisticated party because it had significant experience in handling and negotiating claims with healthcare providers; 2) because defendant bore the risk of mistake, the district court properly denied rescission based on unilateral mistake; and 3) the record of inaction by defendant strongly supported the denial of relief under both unilateral and mutual mistake.

Thu v. Holder, No. 09-1655, concerned a petition for review of the BIA's order dismissing his appeal from a denial of petitioner's asylum application and related relief.  The court of appeals denied the petition, on the grounds that 1) the Immigration Judge's credibility finding was supported by specific, cogent reasons for disbelief; and 2) the evidence in the record was not so compelling that no reasonable factfinder could fail to find the requisite fear of persecution.

George's Inc. v. Allianz Global Risks US Ins. Co., No. 09-2220, was an action against an insurer claiming that defendant failed to indemnify plaintiff for business expenses and personal property losses as required under the terms of its insurance policy.  The court of appeals affirmed partial summary judgment for defendant on the personal property claim, reversed the partial denial of summary judgment on the business expenses claim, because the policy unambiguously excluded coverage for plaintiff's claimed losses.

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