Insurance & Bad Faith
Extensive Insurance Experience
Our practice has always included a strong emphasis on insurance coverage and bad faith litigation. We have made law in Colorado on these subjects, and have lectured nationally for over 20 years on these topics. We remain current on legal developments relating to all areas of insurance law, and are sometimes called upon to provide expert testimony in connection with insurance coverage and bad faith issues.
Coverage opinions and analysis
Our insurance coverage lawyers have analyzed coverage questions in connection with many different kinds of insurance policies, ranging from standard-form ISO policies to custom manuscript policies written by some of the largest and most sophisticated insurance companies in the world. We even have produced our own manual on insurance coverage which is designed to serve as a guide to those seeking to gain an understanding of the fundamental principles of insurance coverage.
Coverage we have analyzed
Our broad experience in insurance coverage analysis includes the following types of insurance:
- Property damage claims under CGL policies
- Construction defects
- Fleet vehicle coverage
- Directors & Officers Liability coverages
- Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI)
- Fire loss claims under first-party and third-party coverages
- Water damage claims under first-party and third-party coverages
- Additional insured (AI) endorsements and exclusions under AI policies
- Owner-Controlled Insurance Programs (OCIP) and Wrap-Up policies
- Event policies
- Manuscript policies
- Electronic errors and omissions coverage
- Custom insurance policies
- Life-sciences coverage issues, including human clinical trials
- Primacy disputes, equitable subrogation and apportionment disputes
- Time-on-risk disputes
- Advertising injury claims
- Personal injury coverage
- Horizontal and vertical exhaustion coverage issues
- Environmental and pollution coverage
- Subrogation claims, anti-subrogation provisions and subrogation waivers
- Professional liability coverages (claims made and occurrence policies)
- Marine insurance claims
- Aviation insurance disputes
- Excess and umbrella coverage, including follow-form policies
- Workers’ compensation coverage
- Premises liability insurance issues and medical payments coverage
- Health insurance issues
- ERISA subrogation and ERISA bad faith claims
- No-Fault Automobile insurance disputes
- Uninsured and Underinsured motorist insurance disputes
- Equitable reformation of insurance coverage
- Coverage by estoppel
Exclusions we have analyzed
We have analyzed and litigated the following policy exclusions:
- Criminal acts exclusions
- Intentional acts exclusions
- Environmental and pollution exclusions
- Pollution exclusions
- Known damage exclusions
- Known claim exclusions
- Completed operations endorsements and “your work” or “your product” exclusions
- Named driver exclusions
- Prior acts exclusions
- Customized exclusions
Declaratory Judgment and Interpleader Actions
We have handled a large number of declaratory judgment actions relating to most of the coverage issues and exclusions listed above. We have also litigated interpleader actions, in which issues of allocation among insureds and bad faith issues are typically implicated.
Bad Faith Litigation
We have tried a number of bad faith cases to jury verdict, and we have litigated many more to summary judgment based upon strictly legal determinations by the court, having handled such claims throughout the midwestern United States in state and federal court, including a number of appeals before the Colorado, Wyoming and 10th Circuit appellate courts.
Our experience in bad faith litigation includes nearly as many of the subject matter areas (including exclusions) as the coverage analysis. We have also provided seminars for the insurance and legal industries regarding how to prosecute and defend bad faith claims, including related litigation for breach of contract, consumer protection claims, fraud claims, equitable reformation claims, misrepresentation on the application, disputes regarding conflicts of interest with competing claims under an aggregate insurance policy and related matters.
Insurance of Construction Defects
We have handled a very large number of insurance coverage issues pertaining to construction defect litigation, ranging from ordinary ISO standard-form insurance policies to highly customized wrap-up insurance packages. Our construction insurance experience includes bad-faith litigation, coverage analysis and coverage opinions, declaratory judgment actions, subrogation claims and contractual indemnity claims. We have litigated issues involving completed operations and completed product hazard claims, additional insured claims, and manuscript construction insurance policies.
Some of our lawyers have testified as expert witnesses in insurance coverage and bad faith cases, and are willing to evaluate claims on the basis of potentially offering expert testimony in court. None of these lawyers have yet been rejected or limited as to the scope of their testimony on the basis of their qualifications or on the basis of any dispute regarding the legal accuracy of the opinions offered.
The key to success in litigation is to be realistic and careful in terms of how a "win" is defined under the circumstances of any given dispute. No two cases are exactly alike. Remember that no attorney or firm can guarantee success according to any arbitrary standard or in terms of a favorable result at trial. Whether or not to try a case or settle a case is a decision a client makes with the advise of an attorney, and no attorney can guarantee anything about the outcome of a civil case. Any case, tried to a jury or a court, might be resolved unfavorably. Trials are inherently unpredictable. Statements contained on this website regarding the ability of the professionals at Godfrey | Johnson, P.C., are based upon good faith perceptions of our abilities demonstrated over years of practice, and are not intended to imply that the attorneys have never lost a case or that we can assure that any particular case will be won at trial or on motions. The best way to evaluate any case is to communicate about it in depth with qualified legal counsel, providing all relevant information to the attorney. It is dangerous to withhold facts from an attorney, and can lead to the delivery of legal advise that is fundamentally flawed. No attorney can prevent this from happening, as attorneys all must rely to some extent upon the information that is provided to them by their clients. The best way to evaluate an attorney is by that attorney's track record, and ours is open for discussion in any specific field. Our abilities as described on this website are based upon experience in actual cases, which have been successful more often than not. ©2015 Godfrey | Johnson, P.C. All rights reserved.