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20321 SW Birch St., Suite 200
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Directors and officers liability insurance (“D&O”) typically covers a company’s former and current directors and officers, and usually the corporate entity itself, for defense fees and costs and damages incurred in connection with a lawsuit alleging that they committed certain wrongful acts or omissions while acting in their capacity as directors and officers for the company.  D&O insurance policies may also cover defense fees and costs incurred in connection with criminal and regulatory investigations and lawsuits.  Potentially covered D&O insurance claims include claims made by shareholders—individually and on behalf of the company in shareholder-derivative actions, customers, regulators, and competitors (e.g., for anti-trust or unfair trade practice allegations).

Unlike commercial general liability insurance, which is typically written on standardized policy forms, D&O policy forms may vary from insurer to insurer and from industry to industry, which can often drive up legal fees and costs necessary to resolve disputes between insureds and their D&O insurers.

D&O policies typically permit the insured to choose its own defense counsel, subject to the insurer’s approval, or from a panel of approved law firms.

Although D&O insurers typically do not have a duty to defend, D&O policies typically cover defense costs. Whether and when a D&O insurer must advance defense costs—that is, pay them as they are incurred—often give rise to disputes.  Moreover, most D&O policies are “self consuming,” i.e., payment of defense fees and costs reduces the amount of insurance coverage remaining to settle or pay judgments.

Additionally, most D&O policies require that an allocation be made with respect to covered or potentially covered claims and those that are not.  D&O insurers on occasion will delay or withhold crucial defense payments to an insured during the course of “investigating” these issues.

We have extensive experience arbitrating and litigating all types of D&O insurance claims, and we are nationally recognized experts in insurance bad faith law and litigation.  We can and will aggressively litigate your case to achieve maximum success.  No attorneys in California are better suited than we are to litigate your D&O insurance claims.

Call or email us to schedule a free consultation.