Insurance Coverage

Insurance Coverage

Construction & Public Contracts

Overview

Hinckley Allen’s attorneys represent clients in insurance coverage disputes, litigation, and administrative insurance proceedings in state insurance departments. Our attorneys are seasoned insurance counsel who help clients understand their rights and obligations under insurance policies, in order to craft the most effective strategy. Additionally, we are able to advise clients from a legal perspective on the adequacy of their insurance and risk management programs in order to minimize risk exposure.

A Top-Notch Team.

We have a deep bench of veteran trial attorneys who have exemplary reputations for providing cost-effective solutions to our clients in all manner of proceedings, including negotiation, litigation, arbitration, and mediation of insurance disputes. Whenever possible, we help clients avoid litigation and trial. However, if we collectively determine that it is necessary to seek court intervention, our attorneys are willing and able to take an insurance coverage dispute to trial. We primarily serve clients in New England. However, we have relationships with attorneys at law firms throughout the country in order to service the needs of our clients in any jurisdiction. Client types include people and organizations in the following areas: construction, manufacturing, banking & financial institutions, aviation and transportation, education, directors and officers, captive insurers, risk management, health care, and insurance.

Our insurance coverage attorneys have represented clients in a wide range of industries in connection with claims to recover insurance proceeds under various types of insurance policies, including the following:

  • General liability policies
  • First-party property policies
  • Business policies (including business interruption)
  • Builder’s risk policies
  • Environmental liability policies
  • Employment practices liability policies
  • Corporate director and officer liability policies
  • Individual health and disability policies
  • Errors and omissions policies

Insurance Litigation

General

  • Successfully represented national construction companies and their sureties in multi-million dollar coverage actions against various insurers with regard to high profile “sick-building” and construction accident claims
  • Successful representation of group of insureds in coverage action arising out of multiple millions of dollars of “POP” insurance issued by carrier
  • Frequent advice to clients with respect to insurance coverage issues/disputes arising out of ground leases, construction contracts, and business operations

Construction Claims

  • Numerous multi-million dollar builder’s risk recoveries
  • Numerous multi-million dollar recoveries from insurers for architects, engineers, and contractors in connection with complex property damage/engineering claims
  • Numerous recoveries for major construction companies on significant claims under inland marine/equipment policies
  • Successfully prosecuted coverage claim relating to defense and indemnity for failure of athletic turf field
  • Successful insurance-funded defense of owners, general contractors, and designers of multi-unit residential and commercial buildings against claims of defective design and/or workmanship
  • Numerous multi-million dollar recoveries for construction companies under builder’s risk policies in cases (some involving mega-projects like Boston’s “Big Dig”) which presented complex insurance, engineering, and construction issues
  • Successfully handled dozens of substantial and complex structural defect, mechanical system, flood, earth movement, and fire insurance claims for regional and national contractors in cases involving bridges, tunnels (cut and cover, bored, jacked and immersed tube); commercial buildings, jails and underground utilities and structures (slurry walls, jet grouting, steam lines, sewer lines, duct banks)

Errors and Omissions

  • Substantial recoveries for property owners on numerous claims against architects, engineers, and their Errors and Omissions (“E&O”) insurance carriers
  • Successful representations of financial institutions, construction companies, and other businesses with respect to indemnity and defense claims made to E&O and D&O insurance carriers
  • Successfully prosecuted a claim by an owner of a hotel/casino against engineering firms relating to the defective design of the steel structure of a hotel tower. Recovered millions of dollars of direct and indirect costs and delay damages from the design engineers and their E&O insurance carriers

Liability Insurance

  • Frequent prosecution of coverage claims for insureds, where insureds sought indemnity and defense from liability carriers for claims made by third-parties for personal injury and/or property damage
  • Substantial experience serving as appointed defense counsel for faulty-workmanship and design claims arising out of heavy highway, office/retail/commercial, and multi-unit residential construction
  • Successfully defended contractors and their sureties with respect to high-profile multi-million dollar claims involving construction site collapses, floods, fires and damaged steam lines, and other utilities
  • Successfully defended a national construction company and its sureties with regard to a high-profile, $80+ million property damage claim arising out of a collapse within an interstate highway tunnel

Property Insurance

  • Numerous successful representations of commercial property owners with respect to first-party and third-party property damage insurance claims (some involving sophisticated engineering testimony and millions of dollars of damages)

Builder’s Risk Recovery

  • Recovered more than $4 million from an owner, a group of builder’s risk insurers, and a utility company on behalf of a national construction company in connection with the failure and replacement of a multi-million dollar multi-layer steam line. Investigation involved both insurance coverage issues and issues of welding and metallurgy, industry standards for the design, installation and operation of multi-layered steam lines, mapping of physical evidence of changes to the failed steam line, and use of such location-related information to demonstrate that the steam line was destroyed by improper operation and not by construction defects.

Cessation of Work/Business Interruption Recovery

  • Recovered $7.75 million of repair costs and cessation of work expenses from a group of OCIP builder’s risk insurance carriers in connection with a construction phase-flood of a group of immersed-tube highway tunnels. Case involved both insurance coverage issues and complex engineering issues relating to geotechnical soil conditions and means/methods of underwater construction.

Resequencing/Extended Overhead Recovery

  • Recovered $5.5 million of resequencing and inefficiency costs and extended overheads from a group of OCIP builder’s risk carriers as a result of a 65,000 cubic yard slope failure on a major cut and cover highway tunnel project. Case involved insurance coverage issues, geotechnical issues, and time entitlement analyses.

First-Party Property Recovery

  • Recovered more than $3 million from our client’s first-party property insurance carrier on account of structural damage done by tenants to a historic building through a series of unauthorized renovations. Subsequent structural damage triggered code compliance upgrades as part of the building’s repair and reconstruction.

Hotel Errors and Omissions Recovery

  • Recovered millions of dollars of direct and indirect costs for an owner of a hotel/casino from engineering firms as a result of the defective design of the steel structure of a hotel tower. The case involved insurance coverage issues, structural steel load path analyses, and time entitlement analyses.

Wrap-Up Claims

  • Numerous multi-million dollar recoveries for construction companies under builder’s risk and wrap-up insurance policies in cases (some involving mega-projects like Boston’s “Big Dig”) which presented complex insurance, engineering, and construction issues
  • Successfully handled dozens of such substantial and complex structural defect, mechanical system, flood, earth movement, and fire claims for regional and national contractors in cases involving bridges, tunnels (cut and cover, bored, jacked, and immersed tube), commercial buildings, and underground utilities and structures (slurry walls, jet grouting, steam lines, sewer lines, duct banks, etc.)
Publication

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Sets Limits on an Insurer’s Duty to Defend

November 14, 2017

In Massachusetts, insurance companies owe a broad duty to their insureds to defend against claims within…

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