Representative Cases for Insurance and Reinsurance Litigation and Counseling

LCBF's insurance and reinsurance practice is as varied and sophisticated as our clients. We often render coverage opinions and other pre-litigation advice aimed at avoiding coverage litigation or increasing the likelihood that coverage litigation, if necessary, will be successful.

The firm has represented domestic and foreign insurers as coverage and monitoring counsel in a variety of coverage disputes, lawsuits and domestic and international arbitrations relating to claims arising under a wide range of policies, including:

  • primary, umbrella, excess and catastrophic policies
  • CGL and multi-peril policies
  • directors & officers and errors & omissions policies
  • OCIP, CCIP and wrap-up policies
  • employment liability policies
  • public officials liability policies
  • media liability policies
  • environmental liability policies
  • professional malpractice policies
  • railroad protective policies
  • first-party property policies.

Equally varied are the underlying claims, which have involved:

  • construction accidents and defects
  • financial fraud
  • pharmaceuticals
  • medical products
  • asbestos and other products liability
  • professional liability
  • discrimination
  • environmental pollution, including landfills and manufactured gas plants
  • unfair competition
  • significant transportation accidents
  • trademark/patent infringement.

Our clients ask us to take leading roles in high-profile coverage claims and suits, such as those involving the World Trade Center and major construction accidents or alleged construction defects at projects in New York City and around the country. Our insurance and reinsurance attorneys also played leading roles in diet drug, savings and loan crisis and silicone breast implant litigation.

Representative Cases

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  • River View at Patchogue, LLC v. Hudson Ins. Co., 122 A.D.3d 824  (2d Dep’t 2014) (affirming dismissal of a "direct action" against Hudson on ground that plaintiff was bound by a holding, in a prior action we had brought on Hudson’s behalf, that Hudson had not received timely notice of an environmental claim or occurrence)

  • Del Savio Masonry Corp. v. American Empire Surplus Lines Ins. Co.; Avalon WP I et al. v. American Empire Surplus Lines Ins. Co. (Supreme Court, Bronx, County) (granting insurer client summary judgment that it did not have a duty to defend or indemnify two insureds on the ground that the insureds failed to provide timely notice of the occurrence of the underlying accident)

  • Long Island Lighting Co. et al. v. Allianz Underwriters Ins. Co. et al., No. 604715/97 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Co. 2012) (granting summary judgment based on late notice to insurance company client with respect to a significant manufactured gas plant environmental waste site on Long Island)

  • Continental Ins. Co. v. Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc., 960 N.E.2d 157 (Ind. Ct. of Appeals 2011) (declaring that defendant putative insureds did not obtain coverage rights under plaintiff insurers' policies via various corporate transactions)

  • Travelers Ins. Co. v. Alfa Laval, Inc. et al., No.  650667/09 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Co. 2011) (dismissing contribution claims of non-settling plaintiff and other insurers against client, which had already settled with the insured concerning coverage for the asbestos claims at issue)

  • Consolidated Rail Corp. v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., C.A. No. 97C-10-001 (Del. Super. Ct. New Castle Co., 2011) (awarding client railroad force account insurer over $1.2 million of defense costs and pre-judgment interest with respect to two wrongful death actions against a contractor’s liability insurer based on the “other insurance” clauses in the respective policies)

  • Hudson Ins. Co. v. VTEQE, Inc., No. 6062102/08 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Co. 2010) (granting insurer summary judgment that no duty to defend or indemnify with respect to underlying environmental claims due to late notice)

  • Stellar Mechanical Services and American Empire Surplus Lines Ins. Co. v. Merchant Ins. Co., 74 A.D.3d 948 (App. Div. 2d Dep’t 2010) (obtained declaration that insurer client was entitled to contribution from other insurer on a primary basis for defense costs incurred in defense of mutual insured)

  • Appalachian Ins. Co. v. Riunione Adriatic Di Sicurata, 60 A.D.3d 495 (App. Div. 1st Dep’t 2009) (affirming trial court decision holding that New York law governed New York-domiciled insured’s insurance coverage claims with respect to environmental sites located in multiple states)

  • Pacific Ins. Co. v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 956 A.2d 1246 (Del. Supr. Ct. 2008) (reversing decision below and holding that claims against railroad arising from two fatal crossing accidents alleged a “meaningful linkage” between a contractor’s operations and the railroad’s alleged liability sufficient to require the contractor’s insurer to defend the railroad under a blanket additional insured endorsement)

  • Metta and American Empire Surplus Lines Ins. Co. v. Fitchburg Mut. Ins. Co., 2008 WL 2520828 (N.J. App. Div. 2008) (declaring, in favor of insured and its insurer, that insurer of plaintiff’s employer was obligated to cover employer for insured’s contractual indemnity claims on which employer had significant exposure)

  • Appalachian Ins. Co. v. Gen. Elec. Co., 8 N.Y.3d 162 (2007) (holding, under New York's “unfortunate event” standard, that multiple asbestos-related claims against a manufacturer of asbestos-insulated steam turbines could not be aggregated into a “single occurrence” in light of the lack of a relationship among each individual plaintiff’s exposure to asbestos)

  • In re September 11th Liability Ins. Coverage Cases, 458 F.Supp.2d 104 (S.D.N.Y. 2006) (dismissing complaint by the insured owner and lessor of the Twin Towers, which sought defense coverage from the primary and excess general liability insurers for 9/11 wrongful death, bodily injury, and property damage claims on grounds that, e.g., defense coverage not part of the insurance purchased by the insureds or required by NY Insurance Reg.107)

  • Fireman’s Ins. Co. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co., 387 N.J. Super. 434 (App. Div. 2006) (leading case in New Jersey on the definition of “property damage” and “occurrence” in the context of construction defect claims, affirming grant of summary judgment to client insurer and holding that it had no duty to cover construction defects at a condominium complex)

  • St. Paul Fire and Marine Ins. Co. v. Universal Builders Supply, 409 F.3d 73 (2d Cir. 2005) (affirming dismissal of our motion to dismiss both $20 million subrogation claim against contractor and third-party coverage claims against client umbrella wrap-up insurer arising from much publicized scaffold collapse at Four Times Square)

  • Continental Cas. Co. v. Auto-Owners Ins. Co., 238 F.3d 941 (8th Cir. 2000) (affirming that insurer client was entitled to reimbursement of contribution it made toward settlement of catastrophic injury suit)

  • Red Apple Supermarkets, Inc. v. North River Ins. Co., 182 F.3d 901 (2d Cir. 1999) (affirming determination that no coverage owed by insurer client because of late notice)

  • Sears Roebuck & Co. v. U.S. Fire Ins. Co., No. A-4081-95T3 (N.J. App. Div.), motion for certification denied, 151 N.J. 74, 697 A.2d 546 (1997) (requiring reimbursement of $5.2 million for insurer client’s contribution towards settlement in apparently the first “vendors endorsement” case Sears ever lost)

  • National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa. v. L.E. Myers Co. Group, 1997 WL 148231 (S.D.N.Y. 1997) (finding, after bench trial, that client wholesale insurance broker  not responsible for failing to object to policy's prior acts exclusion, which would have barred coverage for a subsequent loss, because no mutual agreement to amend coverage provided by binder)

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