Insurance coverage and bad faith liability issues can arise suddenly and unsuspectingly and present some of the most complicated problems carriers face in today’s litigation prone environment. Our attorneys have extensive experience in this complex area. A situation may appear benign when actually, immediate action may be required to avoid estoppel of policy defenses or breach of duties to defend, duties to settle, duties to settle some claims to the exclusion of others, and duties to inform the insured. We are knowledgeable of the nuances of Illinois law in this realm and the options available to insurance carriers facing bad faith claims.
In direct actions involving the policy by or against the company, insureds often allege Illinois Insurance Code Section 155 vexatious and unreasonable delay in payment of covered losses or settlement of an insured’s claim. We have significant experience in defeating such claims, such as establishing the existence of contract defenses and bona fide factual and/or legal disputes determinative of coverage under the policy.
A sample of our cases include:
- Defense of direct actions by an insured for alleged breach of the insurance policy, including extra contractual liability defense for alleged Section 155 vexatious or unreasonable behavior.
- Prosecution of declaratory judgment actions where coverage does not apply and if appropriate, alleged duties to defend.
- Defense of extra-contractual claims for alleged vexatious and unreasonable delay in settling or paying policy claims.
- Advice, consultation and defense of complex multi-party plaintiff and/or defendant situations.
- Interpleader actions where necessary.
- Analysis and defense of bad faith refusal to settle.