Insurance is an expensive business necessity, purchased by the business to protect it in the event a claim is made against the business, or a loss occurs. Unfortunately, many businesses have experienced the situation where, after submitting a claim to its insurer, it is told by the insurer it doesn’t have the coverage protection it thought it had. Sometimes that is the result of the claim not being characterized correctly when presented to the insurer or the business failing to understand how its policy works or the technical position taken by the insurance company in denying a claim. On occasion the business will accept an insurer’s coverage denial letter at face value, without realizing that the rationale given is not supported by the facts or the policy. Other times, the insured business may push back, but not realize what arguments to make, or how to make them. If a business has been sued, it is smart to consult a coverage attorney immediately, to make sure the claim is properly submitted at the outset. The cost to a business of defending itself in litigation can be overwhelming and that expense may be avoidable.
The insurance coverage attorneys of Murphy, Campbell, Alliston and Quinn have obtained numerous published decisions helping to shape the law of insurance coverage in the state of California and have written hundreds of insurance coverage opinions for clients, analyzing various policies in different factual settings. They have helped many businesses obtain the coverage benefits they purchased and are able to explain to the client whether and to what extent insurance applies, so that the claim is properly presented in the first place, and that all potential insurers are put on notice. If an insurer denies a claim, our coverage attorneys will carefully analyze the basis for denial in the context of the policy language and pertinent law, and take appropriate action to protect the insured’s rights to the fullest extent. In some instances, we have been able to convince an insurer to change its position after explaining the issues more carefully. In other cases, it has been necessary to file a lawsuit against the insurer asking the court to decide the coverage question. Where appropriate, we have also sought additional damages caused by an insurer’s “bad faith” denial of coverage. We can help a business deal with any of these situations.
Insurance coverage is a technical area of law which requires years of experience to master. The attorneys of Murphy, Campbell, Alliston and Quinn have obtained numerous published decisions helping to shape the law of insurance coverage in the state of California and have written hundreds of insurance coverage opinions for clients, analyzing various types policies, coverages and coverage forms relevant to businesses, including:
- Commercial General Liability Policies
- Additional Insured Endorsements
- Auto Insurance Policies
- Claims Made Coverage
- Contractors’ Coverage
- Directors and Officers Coverage
- Employment Practices Liability Coverage
- Excess Policies
- Hospital Professional Liability Insurance
- Life Insurance Policies
- Occurrence Coverage
- Professional Liability Policies
- Property and Casualty Insurance Coverage
- Vendors Endorsements
Over the years, we have defended some insurance companies and sued other insurance companies, giving us the unique perspective to understand our adversary’s strategies and weak spots. We do not vilify the entire insurance industry, because in our experience some have been fair, professional and reasonable in their handling of claims and we have provided coverage advice to some of them who appreciate our in-depth understanding of insurance law and our ability to provide clear and objective opinions regarding the insurer’s contractual duty. On the other hand, where it appears an insurer has denied our client’s request for coverage in bad faith, we have fought vigorously through the courts to obtain the coverage benefits that are due.