Susan G. Schellinger

Location: Milwaukee
T: 414.225.1492
F: 414.278.3692
111 E. Kilbourn Avenue, Suite 1400
Milwaukee, WI 53202-6613

Publications: Attorney Susan G. Schellinger

  • Wisconsin appellate court denies insurance coverage to a contractor because work was performed on a building that had synthetic stucco.

    August 24, 2017

    A slew of lawsuits has plagued the construction industry regarding the use of exterior insulation and finish systems, also known as EIFS or synthetic stucco. Insurance companies were historically required to pay money towards those claims under standard commercial general liability policies. As they did in response to lawsuits involving asbestos and environmental contamination, insurance companies reacted by changing their policy language to limit or eliminate their liability for synthetic stucco claims. The Wisconsin Court of Appeals, in Kaitlin Woods Condominium Association v. Nautilus Insurance Company, enforced a broad reading of the synthetic stucco exclusion in favor of the insurance company,...

  • Recent Federal Appeals Court Decision on Insurance Coverage Impacts Manufacturers

    August 24, 2017

    Federal Appeals Court Clarifies that Wisconsin Supreme Court Did Not Intend to Sharply Curtail Coverage for Wisconsin Manufacturers. On August 8, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (the federal court that hears appeals from Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana federal courts) issued a decision that significantly benefits all Wisconsin manufacturers. In Haley v. Kolbe & Kolbe Millwork Co., Inc., the Seventh Circuit found that a window manufacturer has insurance coverage under a standard commercial general liability (CGL) policy for damages caused by allegedly leaky windows. In Haley, the underlying case against the manufacturer for defective windows was dismissed...

  • Key Insurance Coverage Decisions Affecting Businesses in 2017

    February 10, 2017

    Although insurance coverage is to be determined by the language of the policy at issue, court decisions addressing standard policy language can, and do, affect whether or not an insurance company will cover a claim. Throughout 2016, Wisconsin courts issued a number of decisions that may have wide-ranging impact on the interpretation of insurance policies moving forward. As summarized below, the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s 2016 decisions have the potential for negatively impacting coverage for policyholders. In a decision that may affect the interpretation of liability policies held by most Wisconsin manufacturers and suppliers, the Wisconsin Supreme Court addressed whether or not...

  • Knowing is Winning: How to Trigger Insurance Coverage in Commercial Litigation

    May 5, 2016

    Quite simply, successful litigation from the plaintiff’s perspective is one that results in a net recovery. Whether or not a business should invest in litigation against a supplier, customer, or competitor is a business decision. That business decision often turns on many factors, but one crucial inquiry is whether or not a potential monetary recovery will materially exceed the financial investment in the litigation to make the time and distraction worthwhile. Therefore, of utmost concern before commencing a case is evaluating the potential collectability of the defendant. Regardless of the collectability of the defendant itself, it is imperative that a...

  • Change in Sales and Use Tax Affects Contractors, Municipalities and Nonprofits

    February 4, 2016

    Certain local Wisconsin governmental entities and nonprofit organizations have historically been exempt from payment of sales and use tax. Under a change in Wisconsin law which took effect on January 1, 2016, contractors may purchase construction materials on behalf of certain tax-exempt entities and organizations without paying Wisconsin sales or use tax. In essence, as long as the construction materials are incorporated into a construction project for those tax-exempt entities, the contractor will get the benefit of its client’s tax exemption. Before the change in the law, the contractor would be required to pay sales or use tax on the...

  • Wisconsin Supreme Court Confirms Importance for Businesses to Timely Report Insurance Claims

    March 23, 2015

    The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently issued a decision that drives home the importance for businesses and individuals, as policyholders, to immediately report claims to their insurance company. Even a small delay may result in a loss of coverage thereby increasing the risk that, if a claim against you is successful, you will be left to pay for the legal fees to defend the claim, along with the damages that you may be ultimately responsible for – even if your insurance policy would have paid those costs in full if you had notified the insurance company promptly. In the recent case of...

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