Insurance / Reinsurance
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Representative Engagements

Coverage

  • Represent Bermuda-based insurers with regard to various pharmaceutical, environmental and other types of claims.  For example, we represented an insurance company in an international arbitration with regard to property damage and bodily injury claims – both class action and hundreds of additional individual suits – arising out of an oil spill in New Orleans in connection with Hurricane Katrina.
  • Represented our insurance company clients in many of the largest asbestos-related coverage actions including actions involving Exxon, Foster Wheeler, HK Porter, U.S. Gypsum, 3M, and Combustion Engineering.
  • Acted as National coverage counsel for a risk retention group that insures large numbers of colleges and universities, we litigated a coverage action arising out of sexual abuse allegations made against members of the Duke lacrosse team.
  • Served as strategic counsel to a major insurance company with respect to defending underlying silica claims, including claims asserted in the federal multidistrict silica litigation.
  • Represent several insurance companies against direct actions brought by asbestos personal injury claimants in Texas, Ohio, and West Virginia.  These cases seek recovery directly from insurers on the theory that they allegedly failed to warn the claimants about the dangers of exposure to asbestos.  Obtained a favorable ruling from an Ohio appellate court affirming the trial court's dismissal of asbestos personal injury claimants' direct actions against numerous insurance companies that insured asbestos manufacturers and distributors.  The court determined that insurance companies do not owe asbestos injury claimants a duty to warn absent a special relationship between the parties.
  • Defended a wide array of bad faith claims involving significant exposure to our clients.  For example, we obtained a full reversal, with retrial, of a $15 million bad faith verdict in a matter initially tried by another law firm involving the duty to defend and investigate a claim under the commercial general liability (CGL) coverage.  Represented our insurance company clients in numerous environmental coverage actions across the United States including one of the longest-running environmental coverage actions in New Jersey. Among other things, we obtained a favorable summary judgment ruling from a California trial court extending the California Supreme Court's landmark Powerine holding to a "non-standard" excess policy issues by our client. As lead appellate counsel, we then successfully defended the ruling in the Court of Appeal and then in the California Supreme Court.

Reinsurance

  • Successfully represented a cedent in connection with a reinsurer's refusal to pay declaratory judgment expenses in the absence of a loss payment.
  • Successfully represented a cedent in connection with a reinsurer's non-disclosure/rescission claim, and the ceding company's alleged breach of its warranty of retention.
  • Successfully represented a reinsurer in a dispute involving the reasonableness of a cedent's allocation of settlement costs.
  • Represent a U.S. cedent in multiple arbitrations aimed at recovering reinsurance payments for asbestos, environmental, and other long-tail exposures under treaties issued by both alien and domestic reinsurers.
  • Represent a reinsurer in a potential dispute over allocation and number of occurrences issues arising out of a series of losses ceded under an excess-of-loss reinsurance arrangement with an underlying insurance pool.
  • Represent a reinsurer in a reinsurance arbitration involving a dispute over the proper method of allocating and ceding "non-products" asbestos settlements.
  • Successfully represented a cedent in a dispute with its reinsurer over the proper application of an accident exclusion in an underlying insurance policy on which the cedent settled its policyholder's environment claim.
  • Monitored Hurricane Katrina property reinsurance claims being submitted to London reinsurers.
  • Following an extensive hearing, successfully defended a managed-care organization against claims that it had overcharged its reinsured by over $5 million.  In addition, the panel awarded our client over $18 million on affirmative non-solicitation claims.
  • Successfully represented a reinsurer on issues arising from the underwriting, administration, and interpretation of treaty reinsuring variable annuity death benefits.
  • Represent a reinsurer in establishing and implementing protocols for handling sunset, commutation, and notice issues arising out of multiple workers' compensation carve-out treaties.
  • Successfully represented a reinsurer in a dispute with multiple retrocessionaires over the extent of coverage for long term disability coverage.
  • Successfully represented the interests of a major U.K. reinsurer with respect to its reinsurance exposures on a program of long-tail property and casualty insurance written by the now-insolvent U.S. cedent.
  • Successfully represented a reinsurer in commutation negotiations with the Texas liquidator of an insolvent insurance company relating to a reinsurance treaty covering workers' compensation carve-out business.
  • Counseled a global reinsurer, in conjunction with our international dispute resolution attorneys, on reinsurance arbitration issues such as follow the fortunes in connection with a $60 million Latin American reinsurance dispute.
  • Successfully represented a multinational reinsurer in its discussion with both a related corporate entity and the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control regarding the propriety of claims made under reinsurance treaties impacted by losses in U.S. embargoed countries.
  • Represented Bermuda companies in numerous treaty reinsurance disputes over a variety of claims, including class action employment discrimination claims, and environmental claims flowing from various types of sites including Manufactured Gas Plants (MPG) and chemical manufacturing facilities.
  • Represented numerous London and Bermuda reinsurers in a treaty reinsurance dispute relating to surety losses on offshore Brazilian oil platform construction projects.

Professional Liability/Management Liability

  • Represent an insurer in a Bermuda errors and omissions (E&O) arbitration flowing from lawsuits and investigations arising out of the payment of contingent commissions to brokers in the U.S. market.
  • Counsel insurers in the London Market exposed to potential claims flowing from the Madoff and Stanford Ponzi schemes.
  • Represented a captive insurer in a reinsurance dispute arising out of the settlement of an employment practices class action.
  • Represented various London market insurers in a professional liability coverage dispute, including a four week trial, concerning the decommissioning of the Maine Yankee nuclear facility.
  • Represented an international life reinsurer in a class action alleging material misstatements in financials concerning certain valuation allowances on deferred tax assets and the company's Sarbanes-Oxley certifications.
  • Represented numerous reinsurers in a surety dispute based on the construction of several off-shore Brazilian oil platforms.
  • Advised London insurers in the context of coverage issues in other professional matters, including in the health care and legal malpractice areas.
  • Monitor underlying defense litigation with respect to directors and officers (D&O)/E&O claims, and act as both coverage and monitoring counsel.
  • Conduct internal investigations of reserving practice of insurers and reinsurers.

Insurance Broker and Reinsurance Intermediary Defense

  • Defended a wholesale insurance broker on malpractice claims asserted by fast food restaurant franchisees arising out of insurer's denial of coverage for business interruption losses sustained by franchisees following E. coli incident.
  • Defended a wholesale insurance broker on malpractice claims in separate actions relating to exclusions of coverage for property loss for air-train derailment during testing and commissioning, and denial of coverage relating to fire loss sustained following disabling of sprinkler systems at construction site.
  • Defended a commercial insurance broker on negligence, breach of contract and fraud claims relating to placement of loss portfolio transfer insurance in connection with acquisition of national trucking corporation.
  • Defended a commercial insurance broker on claims arising out of insurer's rescission of D&O insurance based on misrepresentations by corporation's CEO in application for insurance concerning prior claims experience, and alleged duty owed by broker to review and verify statements made in insured's application.
  • Defended marine insurance broker on claims alleging duties owed by broker to insurers to prepare marine "bumbershoot" insurance policy on behalf of insurers.
  • Represented marine insurance broker in coverage litigation between insured and insurer involving interpretation of cargo insurance policy provisions, and valuation of cargo shipped by insured pharmaceutical company.
  • Defended reinsurance intermediary on malpractice claims by cedent and reinsurer relating to transmittal of notification of claims and loss information to reinsurer, and construction and interpretation of terms and conditions of facultative reinsurance contract.

Bankruptcy

  • Serve as counsel to insurers in many of the nation's leading asbestos-related bankruptcies, including W.R. Grace, Federal-Mogul, Combustion Engineering, Thorpe Insulation, Quigley, Plant Insulation, JT Thorpe, Flintkote, ASARCO, Burns & Roe, Porter Hayden, Lloyd E. Mitchell, and Skinner.
  • Served as lead trial and appellate counsel for several insurers in the landmark Combustion Engineering case (see In re Combustion Eng'g, Inc., 391 F.3d 190 (3d Cir. 2004)).
  • Obtained a stay pending appeal of a confirmation order in a "pre-packaged" asbestos bankruptcy (see, In re JT Thorpe Co., Nos. 03-20112 and 03-20135 (5th Cir. 2003)).
  • Counseling a consortium of leading American insurance companies concerning issues relating to bankruptcies arising out of mass tort claims, and recently counseled a major manufacturing company concerning the potential impact if its former parent, an asbestos defendant, filed bankruptcy.
  • Served as lead counsel for the debtor's insurance carriers in In re U.S. Brass Corp., a Chapter 11 case involving thousands of products liability claims by persons allegedly damaged by failures of the debtor's polybutylene plumbing products.
  • Represent insurers in the mass tort bankruptcy of a former manufacturer of allegedly defective home heating furnaces.