A lot has happened since early March, when I first wrote about the possibility that the coronavirus outbreak could lead to D&O claims. At that time, there were only 43 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States and six deaths. Now, three months later, there have been over 2 million confirmed cases in the U.S. and over 115,000 deaths. Along with the public health crisis, a dramatic business downturn has unfolded over the last three months as well, one that likely will continue to effect the economy for months to come. Among other things, in the wake of these dramatic events, a number of disputes have developed, including litigation affecting corporate directors and officers. In this latest installment in my continuing series of monthly reports about the D&O consequences arising from the coronavirus outbreak, I have provided an overview of the developing claims trends, as well as the impact both the circumstances and the claims trends have had on the D&O insurance marketplace.
Continue Reading COVID-19 and D&O Insurance: The Latest Update

At Noon EDT on Wednesday April 22, 2020, I will be participating in a free hour-long Business Insurance webinar with my good friends Priya Cherian Huskins of Woodruff Sawyer and Bill Passannante of the Anderson Kill law firm on the topic of D&O Risks from COVID-19. The session will be moderated by Business Insurance’s Gavin

Much has changed since I published my first coronavirus-related post a month ago. The number of confirmed cases and of deaths has soared. Much of the country is now on lockdown. School, work, business — so much of basic social and economic activity has stopped. Much has changed in the D&O arena as well. There have been both claims and underwriting developments, and a number of trends have emerged. In the post below, I discuss some of these developments and trends. I recognize that my observations are limited by my own personal perspective; it is my hope that others will share their observations about the current environment using the comment feature to add their views to this post.
Continue Reading Coronavirus and D&O Insurance: An Interim Update

Three weeks ago, as part of a Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) series of recorded discussions on the professional liability insurance implications of the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, I participated in a short recorded conversation on the viral outbreak’s D&O insurance implications with my good friends Carl Metzger of the Goodwin Procter law firm and Rob

The number of workplace discrimination and harassment charges filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission  (EEOC) during Fiscal Year 2019 (which ended September 30, 2019) declined to the lowest level since at least FY 1997 (the earliest year reported on the agency’s website), according the EEOC’s recent statistical release. The number of charges overall had also declined in the 2018 fiscal year, but in 2018, the number of sexual harassment charges had increased, apparently in response to  the #MeToo movement. However, in FY 2019, the number of sexual harassment charges also decreased as part of the overall decrease in the number of charges, suggesting that the impact of the #MeToo movement diminished during the most recent fiscal year. The agency’s January 24, 2020 press release about the charge statistics can be found here. The agency’s enforcement and litigation statistics can be found here.
Continue Reading EEOC Charges Filed in FY 2019 Declined to Lowest Level in Years

Among the most interesting and significant recent developments on the financial landscape has been the rise of cryptocurrencies and ICOs. As these digital assets have proliferated, they have created a host of regulatory and legal issues. These issues in turn have presented related insurance issues. In the following guest post, John McCarrick, Sedgwick Jeanite, and Michael Goldwasser of the White & Williams law firm take a look at the claims and insurance coverage issues that ICOs present. I would like to thank the authors for allowing me to publish their article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would to submit a guest post. Here is the authors’ article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: ICO-Related Claims and Insurance Coverage: Questions You Should be Asking

white houseA recurring question – one that I am getting now on just about a daily basis – arises from concerns about the Trump administration’s possible impact on the world of directors’ and officers’ liability. Implicit in the question is the assumption that the new administration’s policies and actions will indeed affect D&O claims. While I agree with this assumption – that the new administration’s actions will have an impact–at this point it is still far too early to tell what that impact might be. For now, I think all we can do is watch some key indicators. In this blog post, I review what I think are the key indicators, and what the indicators may tell us about what lies ahead for D&O claims.
Continue Reading How Will the Trump Administration Affect D&O Claims?

globalIn conjunction with my July 2016 visit to Munich for meetings at Munich Re, I sat down for an interview with Christian Furhmann, Chief Executive Manager at Munich Reinsurance Company. The interview, which Munich Re previously published here, is reprinted below. I would like to thank my friends at Munich Re for their permission to republish the interview on this site.
Continue Reading D&O Liability: More Litigation Globally against a Broader Range of Defendants

New corporate and securities litigation filings declined in the third quarter of 2013 compared to the prior quarter and the filings so far this year are on pace for the lowest annual number of filings since before the credit crisis, according to a new report from the insurance information firm, Advisen. The new report, entitled “D&O