Bowles Rice is committed to preserving a healthy and competitive insurance climate in our region. In an increasingly litigious environment, Bowles Rice aggressively defends our insurance clients against extra-contractual and coverage claims.
What are Extra-Contractual and Coverage Claims?
"Extra-contractual claims" seek damages in addition to, or outside, a contract of insurance. The typical “extra-contractual claim” involves a claim for "bad faith," often due to the insurer’s alleged unfair claims handling practices. Our team is well-equipped to handle all types of extra-contractual claims, however, such as spoliation, negligent entrustment, and failure to procure claims.
Coverage issues often arise in extra-contractual claims and involve arguments that the insurer either misinterpreted or misapplied the insurance contract. Whether a coverage claim is asserted in an extra-contractual lawsuit or as a separate, stand-alone claim, our lawyers have significant experience litigating these issues for many different types and lines of insurance.
A Strong, Regional Resource
Bowles Rice provides skilled legal representation in the defense of extra-contractual / bad faith and coverage claims. For decades, Bowles Rice has served countless insurance companies in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Ohio and throughout the region. We represent nationally recognized Fortune 500 insurance companies, but also serves the needs of smaller, regional carriers. Bowles Rice offers a range of legal services to assist insurance professionals, including claims adjuster training, insurance coverage evaluations, pre-suit investigation, litigation/trial defense services and post-trial/appellate advocacy.
Bowles Rice litigators stay abreast of current trends, topics and federal/state legislation that affect our clients through memberships in industry organizations, such as the Defense Research Institute (DRI) and the Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia (DTCWV). We also attend industry conferences and meetings, including the bi-annual DRI Insurance Bad Faith and Extra-Contractual Liability Seminar, and meetings of the DTCWV Insurance Law Committee.
Our Work Includes:
- Bad Faith and Coverage Litigation
- West Virginia Insurance Commissioner Hearings
- Excess Coverage Disputes
- Property Damage Claim Disputes
- Automobile Claims
- Marine Watercraft Claims
- Fire Loss Claims
- Underinsurance / Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UIM/UM)
- Completed Operation Hazard Coverage Claims
- Insurance Agent Liability Claims
- Failure to Procure Insurance Claims
- Disputes focusing on the Insurance Carrier's Underwriting Practices
- Training for Insurance Adjusters, Claim Handlers, Litigation Managers
- Assistance with Developing and/or Refining Claim Handling "Best Practices"
Articles & Alerts
- "Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia Issues Two important Decisions for Insurers: Dorsey v. Progressive (No. 12-1254) Estate of Bradley v. Farmers and Mechanics Mut. Ins. Co. of W. Va. (No. 12-0769)"Litigation Alert, November 18, 2013
- "Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia Reverses First-Party Bad Faith Verdict of $25 Million in Punitive Damages: AIG v. Hess Oil (No. 12-0705)"Litigation Alert, November 13, 2013
- "Nearly $1,000,000 in Attorney's Fees Avoided as the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia Issues a Favorable Decision for West Virginia's Insurance Industry: Lemasters v. Nationwide Mut. Ins. Co."Litigation Alert, November 5, 2013
- Litigation Alert, June 21, 2012