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Writing insurance law textbooks (Casualty Insurance Claims, Excess Liability — Rights and Duties of Commercial Risk Insureds and Insurers, and a new edition of Casualty Fire & Marine Investigation Checklists) it is occasionally possible to predict what a court might rule, or what might change on appeal. In preparing for the new edition of Checklists, I included an instruction regarding the definition of a “named insured” in personal liability (auto, homeowners) forms, when the definition includes a “spouse.” But with the states in turmoil over gay marriage at the time, just who is a “spouse” if one was married in a state allowing gay marriage, but had a claim in a state that did not recognize such marriages? It was one of those fickle pickles of insurance policy language.

No sooner had the text been submitted than the Roberts Court ruled in favor of gay marriage, now universal in all states. Hence my explanatory paragraph was moot. I contacted my editor at Thomson Reuters West, and we elected to delete it. He then checked with John DiMugno (my co-editor on Catastrophe Claims: Insurance Coverage for Natural and Man-made Disasters and the editor of Insurance Litigation Reporter).

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