Understanding Insurer’s Duty to Settle: Practical Tips to Avoid Bad Faith Claims
Shoecraft Burton, LLP is a multi-practice boutique civil litigation firm that provides proactive, cost-conscious and aggressive legal services tailored to its clients’ goals. The firm specializes in litigation, complex insurance coverage matters and appeals. Over the years, the firm has successfully defended and prosecuted hundreds of matters on behalf of insurance companies, policyholders, insurance brokers, corporate and individual clients, developers as well as, municipalities and public entities. The firm has particular expertise in defending insurance bad faith matters, fraudulent insurance claims, insurance application fraud, first party defense and third party defense, premises liability actions, errors and omissions claims against insurance brokers and architects and engineers. The firm routinely provides coverage advice on all lines of insurance for insurers, conducts examinations under oath and drafts, and reviews policy language proposed by insurers for potential future coverage issues. The firm also offers risk management services and litigation avoidance strategies to its insurance and corporate clients designed to mitigate litigation costs. Such services include review of claims manuals, underwriting guidelines, Title 10 certification, training seminars on claims handling and errors and omissions and review of corporate insurance programs.
Michelle Burton is the Managing Partner of Shoecraft ♦ Burton LLP, a boutique civil litigation firm specializing in complex insurance coverage, bad faith defense, insurance defense, and professional liability. Ms. Burton has obtained numerous jury trial defense verdicts for her clients against multi-million dollar claims throughout California. In addition to her trial practice, Ms. Burton is a Certified Appellate Specialist and has authored and argued numerous appeals addressing insurance-related matters including Douglas v. Fidelity Insurance Company, the leading case on rescission in California. She was trial and appellate counsel on a case consolidated for oral argument with Lee v. California Capital Insurance Co., the recently-decided case which provides important guidance to appraisers and umpires for appraisals involving a disputed scope. She advocated many of the contentions adopted by the Court of Appeal in its published decision. Ms. Burton provides Fair Claims Training, Good Faith Claims Handling Training, Insurers Obligations to Resolve Claims and Appraisal Training for her clients.
Hugh D. Hughes brings to SDV a wealth of experience in complex litigation including a successful appellate practice, having argued a wide variety of issues before the Connecticut Appellate and Supreme Courts. Hugh has had nearly 30 reported appellate decisions in Connecticut, earning him a Super Lawyers’ designation in appellate work each year since 2015.
Hugh’s concentration in insurance law makes him an outstanding addition to our team. His representation of clients includes coverage issues involving builder’s risk, property and casualty and employment liability policies. Hugh also has expertise in workers’ compensation coverage for negligent assault and battery as well as UM/UIM and CUTPA claims. Hugh is on the Executive Committee of, and is a Legislative Liaison for, the Insurance Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association, a role which allows him to stay abreast of legislation concerning insurance law in the state.
While in law school, Hugh was a member of the Connecticut Law Review. Upon graduation, he spent a year as a Law Clerk to Justice Francis McDonald, a future Chief Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court.