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NJ Ruling On Same-Sex Couple Could Reignite Old Claims


New Jersey’s recently decided Moreland case — which reversed a denial of a Portee claim involving a member of a same-sex couple — has set a precedent that could reignite previously dismissed suits involving unmarried couples in the state. In the wake of this decision, insurance companies with clients in New Jersey, and self-insureds with New Jersey exposure, may want to review any active — and some closed — Portee claims that were filed against their clients (or in the case of self-insureds, against their company) and consider adjusting their reserves accordingly.

New Jersey courts have been known to be friendly to progressive ideas, and with this decision the state joins others in abdicating a lockstep attachment between legal recognition and the emotional attachments present in a nontraditional family setting. Because this will likely be a continuing issue, general counsel and other advisers may wish to consider strategies on a going-forward basis.

Read the full article in Law360 here.

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