Settling in - Summer in Beantown
Having attended my first baseball game at Fenway Park, home of the Redsox, the current World Series Champions (yes, just the US and Canada), I can safely say that Boston (aka Beantown) is sports crazy.
Especially now, with the Celtics playing the LA Lakers in the NBA Finals, everybody in New England except me seems to be wearing Celtics or Red Sox colours.
Everywhere you go in town, you now see t-shirts with the subtle yet witty slogans of “Beat LA” or “I Hate LA” as well as the obligatory anti NY Yankees items (e.g. “Real Women Don’t Date Yankees Fans” and “Yankees Suck”).
I have been forced to declare myself bipartisan as I am otherwise threatened with expulsion and Sopranos type reprisals from our New York office which has a suspiciously high gangster name contingent (e.g. George, Don, Vito, Rocco and Marco).
On the other hand two of my local colleagues, Paul and Bill, are Boston guys through and through and practically insist I declare my allegiance to their Bostonian cause.
It’s not easy treading a diplomatic line, but my unflinching support for the mighty Brighton & Hove Albion is a suitable means with which to mystify my fellow adjusters onto other subjects.
“It is not easy treading a diplomatic line, but my unflinching support for the mighty Brighton and Hove Albion is a suitable means with which to mystify my fellow adjusters onto other subjects.
On a more professional - and dare I suggest, sedate front - there was a recent legal ruling by the US Supreme Court which found that the Environment Protection Agency is now obligated to regulate greenhouse gas emissions which in turn, could result in more climate change litigation against any defendants found to be contributing to global warming. Whilst there is a great challenge in demonstrating a causal link between such omissions and actual harm, special interest groups and private individuals are seeking to use this case to seek damages.
By way of example, a group of homeowners in Mississippi are suing a local energy and a local chemical company alleging that their daily business activities contributed to global warming and aggravated damage they suffered in Hurricane Katrina.
If insurers are providing liability covers to such defendants and the cover does not exclude claims for damage, injury or loss arising from such emissions, there is a potential exposure for insurers to such cases, at the very least for legal costs under the duty to defend.
I wonder how long it might be before such litigation spreads into the UK and Europe given recent moves to lower the barriers to class actions within the EU.
Meanwhile, I have just seen our oldest daughter wearing a pink Red Sox cap – just don’t tell the Sopranos!
John Turner is Vice President and Executive General Adjuster at MYI. He recently moved to the company's Boston office.