Financial Services & Professional Liability Insurance Claims

The ability to recognize an archaic but subtle difference in a policy form may mean the difference between success and failure.

D & O, E & O, EPL, ERISA Fiduciary Liability and Benefits Insurance Claims

Hoke LLC has represented corporations in jurisdictions throughout the United States in insurance claims involving financial services, including D&O and E&O claims, ERISA fiduciary liability, employment practices and employee benefits liability, liability arising out of failed business ventures, shareholder disputes, investment management decisions, malpractice, and breaches of fiduciary duty.

General Liability, Bad Faith, Umbrella and Excess Coverage

We possess extensive experience in the many General Liability issues related to bad faith, reservation of rights, claims-made, umbrella and excess drop-down coverage, late notice, advertising liability, personal injury and premises liability.

Property Insurance Claims

We have successfully resolved various first-party property claims involving fire and water damage claims, business interruption and builder’s risk.

Select representations include:
  • Within six months of filing suit on behalf of our national custodian trust firm client, successfully settled the case seeking coverage under an AIG-issued D&O and Bankers Professional Liability policy for suits by underlying plaintiffs claiming they were victims of a $100M Ponzi scheme.
  • Using a ninety-year old statute, obtained a first-ever judicial finding that one of the largest insurers in the world was not properly admitted to do business in Illinois, forcing the insurer to post a bond for the full amount at issue in the underlying cases in order to be allowed to defend itself in the coverage action. Within a week of the ruling, the insurer agreed to begin covering our Fortune 500 client’s 50,000 asbestos claims after refusing for years to do so.
  • Within a month of being hired by our Fortune 500 publicly traded mining equipment client due to a claim denial by its Fiduciary Liability insurer, managed to settle the matter recovering approximately 65% of the underlying settlement despite the fact fiduciary policies generally only cover defense expenses.
  • Obtained full defense from Hartford under a D & O liability policy for a lawsuit alleging that an important recently launched product was based on misappropriated trade secrets. The complaint was filed by a competitor and alleged that one of its former employees that had been hired by our client had stolen intellectual property which included the design of the product. The claim was tendered for a defense, but was denied on various grounds including that trade secret theft was excluded. Within a month of being retained, and without filing suit, we developed a compelling argument for coverage and the carrier reversed its position agreeing to provide a full defense for both the claim against the company as well as a separate claim against the employee.
  • Steve Hoke was retained by a Fortune 500 company to direct the annual multi-line renewal when the Risk Manager left unexpectedly before year-end. He supervised the placement of the D & O, General Liability, general FinPro and other relevant coverages.
  • Precedent setting dismissal of a $600M coverage action on behalf of our Fortune 100 insured by successfully arguing that it would prejudice the defense of the underlying claim: preserved an estimated $5M-$10Mper annum defense expense. Sustained on appeal.
  • Successful representation of an asset management firm in coverage dispute over claims by local union chapter involving alleged errors and omissions in its management of retirement funds.
  • Principal outside counsel for national broker-dealer selling fixed-income products, including representation on issues such as suitability of products, employment and shareholder disputes.
  • Obtained insurance coverage for two class actions: 1) an EU manufacturer of over 1,000,000 allegedly dangerous and defective vehicles from a complicated international insurance program with substantial SIR and captive components; and 2) a national food distributor prominently accused in the media of systematic racial discrimination in hiring.
  • Successful representation of a prominent fixed income broker-dealer against a North Carolina corporation and its Directors & Officers over a failed business venture.
  • Prevailed in an arbitration in which a CEO and majority shareholder in a prominent financial services firm allegedly over-paid himself approximately $30M, resulting in the CEO filing personal bankruptcy. Represented the minority shareholders throughout the process including the purchase of the CEO’s stock in bankruptcy, and later represented the company successfully in post-purchase regulatory and insurance litigation and other proceedings.
  • After an initial claim denial, full recovery for a Fortune 500 policyholder for damage to yachts stored in a Spanish boat yard building destroyed by fire.
  • Full recovery via settlement of a first-party property claim for a fire that destroyed a commercial building and grocery store within 6 months of the original full claim denial and without resort to litigation.
  • Steve served as a registered lobbyist on behalf of a Fortune 500 client with respect to legislation that would have seriously limited the value of its outstanding insurance, successfully lobbying for defeat of adverse legislation.
  • Successful representation of a company whose business was interrupted by a roof explosion that resulted in denial of access to the building for an extended period of time.