Patterson Belknap attorneys have significant experience litigating on behalf of clients in complex insurance coverage matters. This work includes disputes related to business interruptions, defamation and privacy, Directors & Officers liability, financial insurance, fraud and crime, intellectual property and product liability issues. They are well versed in handling the full range of procedural issues in these cases, including choice of law, forum non conveniens, party joinder and case management. They are also skilled in handling duty-to-defend disputes, including resolution of issues concerning the relationship between the insurer and independent counsel. Typically, the firm represents the insured in coverage matters, although it also has good working relationships with many of the prominent insurers.
Our clients in this area include major international entities, based in both the U.S. and Europe, in industries including financial services, pharmaceuticals and manufacturing. Examples of our insurance coverage work include our representation of:
- A large mutual fund company in litigation against its carrier to establish coverage for a series of fraud suits and class actions brought by our client's customers.
- A major U.S. pharmaceutical company in a coverage dispute with its primary and excess insurers concerning coverage for discrimination claims arising from a reduction in force; principal issue was the number of occurrences and resulting number of times deductible would be pierced.
- A major U.S. pharmaceutical and health products company regarding business interruption coverage arising from a consumer product recall.
- A non-profit regarding coverage for defalcations by the organization's former CEO.
- A French pharmaceutical manufacturer in connection with mass-tort coverage issues arising from the Fen-Phen diet drug class actions, which was one of the largest product liability matters in U.S. history.
- A company sued for contributory patent infringement seeking coverage under the terms of its “advertising injury” policy.
- A major global electrical products manufacturer in coverage dispute regarding "intended or expected injury" exclusion in mass tort litigation resulting from fatal European train crash.
- A cable television network in resolving duty-to-defend and liability coverage dispute with its insurer arising from underlying litigation alleging theft of idea for a successful television series.
- An insured in defense of the scope of coverage against its insurer's attempt to reform the terms of an insurance policy.
- A client seeking coverage under its comprehensive general liability policy for coverage of antitrust damages; led to a ground-breaking coverage decision allowing coverage.
- Multiple U.S. and foreign insurers in the defense of federal and state coverage cases, including numerous cases arising from Holocaust era insurance policies.