In a case which has involved the interpretation of Oklahoma’s arbitration statutes and the amendments to those statutes, a federal judge has ruled that an arbitration agreement between an insurer and its reinsurer is broad enough to require that any bad faith claim the insurer may have should be arbitrated as well.
The case was filed in the Northern District of Oklahoma by MidContinent against GenRe (Case No. 06-cv-00475) The order prohibits MidContinent from amending its complaint to add a bad faith claim but notes that MidContinent could include such a claim in the arbitration.
This case was undoubtably complicated by the recent flurry of amendments to the Oklahoma arbitration statutes. Those statutes have always prohibited arbitration of insurance matters unless permitted by statute. But there was always an exception to that prohibition for agreements between insurance companies — at least until the statutes were amended in 2005 and the legislature omitted the exception. The 2005 amendments were retroactive; and then, in 2008 the "between insurance companies" exception was put back in. The 10th Circuit has ruled that the 2008 amendment was also retroactive, so would apply to the dispute.