Third party claims covered by liability insurance create a unique role for insurance defence counsel. It also creates unique relationships between insurer and insured.
The purpose of this seminar is twofold. First, it is to address the legal ethical obligations of insurance defence counsel when appointed to defend a case. Who is the defence counsel’s client? What obligations are owed to the client by the lawyer? What happens when an insured tells defence counsel something material to coverage (as opposed to the defence of the underlying claim)? What should defence counsel do– disclose to all parties? withdraw without comment?
Second, the purpose of this seminar is to go beyond legal ethics and look at how coverage disputes in third party liability coverage affect the relationship between insurer and insured. In essence, this part of the seminar will examine the obligations of good faith owed by the insurer to the insured. It will also look at how insurers may be able to protect themselves from both bad faith claims and from accidentally admitting coverage when all the insurer is committed to do is defend a claim and reserve rights on coverage for a later date.