In exchange for payment of substantial premiums, policyholders expect fair treatment from their insurance providers. In the event of a loss, they expect to receive prompt payment of a covered claim. However, the process of getting an insurance company to pay benefits owed is not always straightforward. The insurance company may deny the claims, delay payment, underpay the claim, fail to conduct a proper investigation, or otherwise act in bad faith. Our attorneys are familiar with the nuances of the different types of insurance policies and the coverage provided by them, as discussed below.
Commercial general liability policies protect businesses from third-party liability claims arising out of their operations. The circumstances giving rise to third-party liability claims are virtually limitless (e.g., a customer slipping and falling on the business premises, an employee causing damage to a customer’s property, and lawsuits by consumers about misleading or false advertising.)
When shareholders, customers, vendors, suppliers, and/or creditors have grievances with a company, they may file suit not only against the company but also against the company’s directors and officers personally. For example, executives may be sued for negligence, misuse or theft of intellectual property, or breaking workplace laws. These kinds of claims against individuals can harm executives’ reputations and threaten their careers. They also may create major financial burdens on companies and their executives. Directors and Officers (D&O) liability policies are designed to protect against these kinds of risks. Our team is well versed in the intricacies of these policies.
Professional liability insurance (also called errors and omissions insurance (E&O) or malpractice insurance) protects professionals and businesses that employ professionals from liability claims made by clients or customers. The kinds of claims covered by professional liability policies include common mistakes, negligence, omissions, or misrepresentations made by professionals while rendering professional services (e.g., accountants, attorneys, doctors, architects, and others). We help firms facing claims challenges under professional liability policies.
Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI) covers the cost to defend a company from employment-related claims and damages related to those employment-related claims (e.g., wrongful termination, discrimination and harassment, and retaliation). Businesses of all sizes are subject to employment-related claims and lawsuits. EPLI coverage often is combined with Directors & Officers insurance. Our insurance coverage attorneys offer coverage analysis and dispute resolution services for companies facing employment practices liability claims. Because coverage disputes between insurers and policyholders concerning Employment Practices Liability issues can be complex and expensive, we work to resolve these disputes without litigation whenever possible.
Builder’s risk policies protect owners, developers, and contractors against property losses occurring during construction. These losses often are catastrophic, with property damage and resulting delays that can threaten the viability of the project. Because builder’s risk policies cover physical losses to insured property but do not cover faulty workmanship per se, disputes often arise regarding coverage for disruptions caused by unforeseen events during construction. We have decades of experience navigating the landmines these claims present.
Commercial property insurance is designed to provide coverage for the repair or replacement of physical assets after unexpected losses. It covers a company’s real estate and the contents inside of it. A standard commercial property policy will cover damage to a business caused by events such as burglaries, vandalism, fires, and storms. But commercial property policies do not pay to repair or replace assets that become damaged because of normal wear or tear, or major natural disasters. Our commercial property attorneys regularly help business owners recover from unexpected business losses. We help companies maximize their benefits under commercial property policies and restore their business assets so they can run at full capacity.
An owner-controlled (OCIP or “wrap”) insurance program is designed to cover all liability risks involved with a construction project under one umbrella. These programs appeal to owners and contractors because they offer cost savings, comprehensive risk management, and a combined claims process for all parties and risks on a construction site. However, owner-controlled insurance programs may involve unique complications (e.g., added administrative costs, false claims made by contractors, less incentive by contractors to control losses, and possibly lower coverage limits.) We help stakeholders in OCIPs navigate the landmines unique to this highly specialized insurance platform.
Risk-specific or special risk policies are designed to cover businesses that have unique risk exposures or are of a size that requires special handling. These policies are unusual because the business being insured tends to be exposed to certain risks, and the coverage provided is narrowly tailored to these risks (e.g., pollution liability). We help companies maximize their benefits with risk-specific products and determine whether they are fully covered by their current policies.