Insurance Coverage Litigation & Counseling
Our attorneys are widely recognized as experts in the area of insurance coverage litigation and counseling. Hancock Daniel has successfully represented insurers in complex coverage litigation in numerous state and federal courts, including courts in Virginia, the District of Columbia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Kentucky. We handle matters involving a wide variety of insurance coverages, including commercial general liability, auto, property, builders risk, inland marine, professional liability, technology error and omissions liability, directors and officers liability, fiduciary liability, excess/umbrella, as well as various specialty coverages. Hancock Daniel also advises clients faced with difficult coverage questions, and we have provided numerous coverage opinions with respect to complex claims.
- Obtained judgment declaring that commercial general liability insurer did not owe coverage for shooting incident at a hunt club. Marks v. Scottsdale Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 11072 (4th Cir. 2015).
- Successfully defended limits stacking claim under commercial auto policy. Dooley v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 716 F.3d 131 (4th Cir. 2013).
- Obtained judgment for insurer in coverage arbitration over proper calculation of lost business income and coinsurance amounts under commercial property policy following destruction of equipment in manufacturing plant and resulting suspension of operations.
- Obtained favorable resolution through mediation of subcontractors’ claim for coverage under builders risk policy for costs to replace installed conduit damaged by other subcontractors.
- Successfully represented insurers in property and commercial general liability coverage actions arising from installation of imported Chinese drywall in homes in Virginia. Client-insurers paid nothing under policies despite aggressive litigation efforts by policyholder attorneys, including attempts to transfer to Chinese drywall MDL. Builders Mut. Ins. Co. v. Dragas Mgmt. Corp., 793 F. Supp. 2d 785 (E.D. Va. 2011), rev’d on other grounds, 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 24120 (4th Cir. 2012).
- Obtained judgment declaring that an insurer did not owe a duty to defend against a trademark infringement suit under the advertising injury coverage of a commercial general liability policy. Premier Pet, LLC v. Travelers Property Cas. Co. of America, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 494 (E.D. Va. 2010).
- Conducted training for insurer on additional insured and insured contract/indemnitee issues arising under commercial general liability policies.
PUBLICATIONS & PRESENTATIONS
- Effective Summary Judgment Motions, ABA Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar; Tucson, Arizona; March 2016
- Defending the Corporate Deposition; Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys Annual Meeting; Williamsburg, Virginia; October 2015
- It’s Only Forum Shopping When It’s Coming from the Other Side; ABA Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar; Tucson, Arizona; March 2015
- Analyzing the CGL Insuring Agreement: Occurrence, Trigger and Other Hot Topics; PLRB/LIRB 2014 Claims Conference; Indianapolis, Indiana; April 2014
- Yours, Mine, or Ours? The Evolution of Additional Insured Coverage; ABA Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar; Tucson, Arizona; March 2014
- Football Helmets, Latent Claims, and Long Tails: Can Insurers Get Courts to Recognize the Injury-In-Fact Trigger; DRI Insurance Coverage & Practice Seminar; New York, New York; December 2013
- CGL 400: Mastering the Nuances of CGL Coverage; PLRB/LIRB 2013 Claims Conference; Indianapolis, Indiana; March 2013
- Make it or Break it – Tips and Strategies for Maximizing the Value of a Corporate Deposition in Your Coverage Case; ABA Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar; Tucson, Arizona; March 2013
- Advanced Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Law; National Business Institute Seminar; Richmond, Virginia; October 2012
- Chinese Drywall CGL Coverage Decisions: Impact on Future Claims; PLRB/LIRB 2012 Claims Conference; Orlando, Florida; April 2012
Captive and Other Self-insurance Programs
Hancock Daniel’s Insurance Practice Group assists clients in establishing effective liability insurance programs tailored to meet their needs. We organize and provide ongoing representation to captive insurance companies and risk purchasing groups sponsored by insurance companies and healthcare organizations. We also help clients establish self-insurance trusts and large deductible programs with commercial insurers.
- Organized and continue to serve as counsel to a Vermont domiciled reciprocal risk retention group for a Virginia health system. We also represent healthcare captives domiciled in Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.
- Analyzed a hospital’s liability insurance program and made recommendations as to appropriate policy limits (per claim and aggregate) for the hospital and employed physicians, the per claim and aggregate self-insured retention, and the best use of primary and excess insurance policies to implement the desired program.
- Reviewed a health system’s professional liability, general liability, directors and officers liability, employment practices liability, and employee benefits liability insurance coverages, and gave a presentation to the board of directors as to current coverages and areas of potential uncovered exposure.
- Worked with several health system captives to develop claims plans of operation, risk management plans, and underwriting guidelines.
- Our attorneys regularly attend the claims committee meetings of several health system captives as consultants on strategy and reserves with respect to specific claims.
PUBLICATIONS & PRESENTATIONS
- Importance of Periodic Coverage Reviews, Captive Insurance Company Reports (CICR), February 2009.
- Has Your Captive’s Coverage Forms Kept Up With Your Needs?, Bermuda Captive Conference, Southhampton, Bermuda, June 2008.
- Managing Category Five Claims, Bermuda Captive Conference, Southhampton, Bermuda, June 2008.
- When Settlement Is Not Enough: Could An Insurer Be In Bad Faith Because It Settled?, Coverage, Volume 17, Number 8, November/December 2007.
- Negotiating And Implementing Litigation Management Guidelines, Mealey’s Litigation Management Guidelines Conference, New York, New York, May 2007.
- Professional Liability Insurance Coverage Issues – A Primer, Virginia State Bar Annual Meeting, Virginia Beach, Virginia, July 2006.