Insurance Coverage for Governmental Investigations

The Jefferson Memorial at Sunrise; A Good Place to Contemplate the Scope of Governmental Investigations
The Jefferson Memorial at Sunrise is a Good Place to Contemplate the Scope of Governmental Investigations

Government investigations and enforcement efforts have grown rapidly in the past several years.  The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Department of Justice (DOJ), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and state attorneys general have come after businesses in a big way, generating a flurry of headlines.  What is not getting publicity is the enormous cost of responding to these government investigations.  Fortunately, insurance policies provide valuable coverage for many of these investigations.

Brian Friel of Miller Friel, PLLC recently presented on the topic of “Insurance Coverage on the topic of “Insurance Coverage for Governmental Investigations” for HB Litigation Conferences and West LegalEdcenter.  The presentation is available through either West Legaledcenter (search insurance) or HB Litigation.  Course handouts Insurance Coverage for Government Investigations are available here.

Miller Friel, PLLC is a specialized insurance coverage law firm whose sole purpose is to help corporate clients maximize their insurance coverage.  Our Focus of exclusively representing policyholders, combined with our extensive Experience in the area of insurance law, leads to greater efficiency, lower costs and better Results.  Further discussion and analysis of insurance coverage issues impacting policyholders can be found in our Miller Friel Insurance Coverage Blog and our 7 Tips for Maximizing Coverage series. For additional information about this post, please call 202-760-3160.

2 thoughts on “Insurance Coverage for Governmental Investigations

  1. Jonathan discusses the fact that insurer representatives are receiving more requests for discovery on their claim files, whether in a direct coverage action or via subpoena in connection with a claim against their insured.

    1. This raises a good point, even though it was not raised in this post. Corporate policyholders are entitled to full and complete claims information. We are not aware of any situations where the government has issued a subpoena against an insurer, as that is a total waste of time and effort for them. That is not necessarily the case with non-governmental claims. If an insurance carrier denies a claim, and the policyholder has no objections, it is likely appropriate for the insurance company to turn over claims files to the underlying claimant. If, on the other hand, the insurance company is paying for 100 percent of the claim under an unqualified defense, there is no need for the insurance company to turn over anything, because the insurance carrier is united with the policyholder to defend the claim. The issue only arises in the first instance when the insurance company attempts to limit their liability at the expense of the corporate policyholder’s interests. When they do this, either by reserving their rights, or by denying coverage, the insurance company puts itself at risk and should turn over everything relating to the claim.

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