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Insurance and Reinsurance Appeals

In addition to our deep experience at the trial and hearing level in insurance/reinsurance disputes, the industry views Sidley as having particular appellate capabilities, including one of the preeminent Supreme Court practices in the country. Lawyers in Sidley’s Appellate Practice routinely represent clients before the United States Supreme Court, state supreme courts, federal courts of appeals and other appellate forums. In addition to appearing on the National Law Journal “Appellate Hot List” six years running, Sidley’s appellate work has been featured in USA Today, BusinessWeek, The American Lawyer, Legal Times, The National Law Journal and Metropolitan Corporate Counsel.

Over the last decade, our lawyers have successfully represented U.S. insurance companies in many significant reinsurance appeals. In these decisions, the federal judiciary articulated new standards respecting both substantive and procedural aspects of reinsurance law and practice.

For example, in 2004, the Second Circuit held that reinsurers are bound under the follow-the-fortunes doctrine by the reinsured’s allocation of a settlement payment. In 2005, the First Circuit held that reinsurers are bound under the follow-the-fortunes doctrine by a reinsured’s determinations respecting how many limits are available under multi-year liability policies. Finally, in 2006 and 2007, the Third, Seventh and Ninth Circuits held that consolidation of multiple reinsurance arbitrations is a question of arbitration procedure to be decided by arbitrators, and not courts, in the first instance. These decisions established important precedent for the entire reinsurance industry.

Representative appeals in which Sidley has represented parties in insurance and reinsurance disputes include:

  • Chartis Insurance v. Iowa Insurance Commissioner, No. 12-0383 (Iowa S. Ct. May 17, 2013)
  • Leimkuehler v. American United Life Ins. Co., 713 F.3d 905 (7th Cir. 2013)
  • Ruppert v. Principal Life Insurance Co., 252 F.R.D. 488 (S.D. Iowa 2008), appeal dismissed, 705 F.3d 839 (8th Cir. 2013).
  • Stonewall Ins. Co. v. E.I. duPont de Nemours & Co., 996 A.2d 1254 (Del. 2010)
  • Century Indem. Co. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s, 584 F.3d 513 (3d Cir. 2009)
  • Certain Underwriters at Lloyd's v. Westchester Fire Ins. Co., 489 F.3d 580 (3d Cir. 2007)
  • Employers Ins. Co. v. Century Indem. Co., 443 F.3d 573 (7th Cir. 2006)
  • Commercial Union Ins. Co. v. Swiss Reinsurance Am. Corp., 413 F.3d 121 (1st Cir. 2005)
  • American Employers’ Ins. Co. v. Swiss Reinsurance Am. Corp., 413 F.3d 129 (1st Cir. 2005)
  • North River Ins. Co. v. ACE Am. Reinsurance Co., 361 F.3d 134 (2d Cir. 2004)