Robinson+Cole’s Subrogation Team comprises seasoned lawyers and leaders in the subrogation field. We prosecute large loss property subrogation claims, including claims arising from fires and explosions, water losses, construction defects, boiler and machinery failures, and marine and inland marine losses.
We handle complex and high-value subrogation claims for many of the world's largest insurers and reinsurers as well as more routine subrogation matters. We are always willing to evaluate matters of any size for our subrogation clients and participate in negotiating, mediating, and arbitrating any claim where our services can add value.
Effective Case Management
Our experienced team of lawyers and nonlawyer professionals has a proven combination of skill and judgment critical to achieving the maximum subrogation recovery. We developed a streamlined approach for clients to report new claims promptly after a loss, permitting us to immediately preserve evidence, gather essential information, and aggressively pursue our clients' rights.
We also employ a full-time subrogation coordinator to facilitate the intake and management of subrogation claims, track deadlines and case progress, and serve as a key point of contact with our clients. Our coordinator’s awareness of our clients' business priorities and broad-based knowledge of insurance coverage, claims procedures, and subrogation issues contribute to our team’s effectiveness and efficiency.
We communicate regularly with our clients on the status of ongoing investigations, theories of liability, and our analysis of key documents and the relevant legal issues. We typically propose mediation at an early stage in the subrogation process to eliminate the time and expense of protracted litigation. When litigation becomes necessary, however, we aggressively pursue the case through trial and appeal when appropriate. Our Subrogation Team has an impressive trial track record, as well as numerous successes in mediating and arbitrating subrogation claims.
Coordination with Experts, Consultants, and Independent Adjusters
Very often, our greatest value early in these cases is our ability to get the right experts assembled and working for us on short notice. We have deep ties to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Our group chair, John Kane, currently serves on the NFPA 921 technical committee, and we have close working relationships with many of the premier fire and explosion experts across the country. Our standing in the fire investigation community allows us to tap a nationwide network of top forensic professionals, fire investigators, fire protection engineers, and fire scientists who promptly respond to loss sites anywhere in the United States. We ensure that the right people, with the right expertise, arrive at the loss scene as soon as possible. Our lawyers are fully versed in all aspects of origin and cause investigations, and we and our experts conduct thorough investigations to put our insurance clients in the best position possible to properly evaluate all potential recoveries.
We literally helped “write the book” that sets the standards for fire and explosion investigations and analysis—NFPA 921 Guide for Fire & Explosion Investigation, including rewriting Chapter 18, “Fire Cause Determination,” and revamping Chapter 27, now called “Management of Complex Investigations.” In addition, one of our colleagues served on the International Fire Service Training Association committees that produced Introduction to Fire Origin and Cause, 3rd ed., and Fire Investigator, 2nd ed.
We also have relationships with independent adjusters and consultants, including the leading forensic accounting firms that handle the business interruption aspects of coverage claims, helping us to achieve a coordinated and seamless recovery effort.
Members of our Subrogation Team are leaders in the following specialized professional organizations:
Recovered $30 million for a group of insurers in a suit against a major utility company arising out of a high-voltage electrical fire at a large manufacturing facility in Rhode Island.
Recovered tens of millions of dollars for insurer clients against foreign manufacturers arising out of fires caused by defective halogen lamps.
Achieved a 90 percent recovery (over $2 million) for an insurer arising out of damage caused by a backflow of steam at a cogeneration plant.
Successfully represented an insurer in litigation and mediation In connection with the largest of 26 consolidated cases arising from a fire at a shopping center.
Successfully represented a building owner and insurer in connection with a major structural fire in New York City that caused the collapse of three buildings and over $20 million in losses.
Successfully represented an insurer in connection with numerous product liability claims against a manufacturer of a wood finish product linked to spontaneous combustion and to fires nationwide.
Successfully represented an international insurer in an international arbitration against a Venezuelan construction contractor and a Russian shipping company arising from vessels crashing into a pier at a chemical tank facility, resulting in millions of dollars in property damage and business interruption losses to the main pier in Puerto Cabello, Venezuela.
Successfully represented an insurer in connection with a payment made under a builder’s risk policy involving the collapse of a commercial building in Brooklyn, New York.
Successfully represented an insurer in multimillion-dollar claims arising out of the loss of heavy equipment when a barge sank in New York Harbor.
Successfully represented an insurer in claims against several subcontractors to recover payments made under a builder's risk policy arising out of water damage in connection with a construction project of the Dormitory Authority of New York.
Successfully recovered a substantial sum for an inland marine carrier arising out of damage to a barge in New Haven Harbor during a 100-year storm.
Successfully represented a Fortune 10 company in connection with a chemical explosion at one of its facilities in California, resulting in a fatality and over $100 million in property damage.
Successfully represented an owner and insurer of a power plant in Texas that suffered an explosion, resulting in over $30 million in property damage.
Recovered a multimillion-dollar settlement arising out of a yacht fire in Anguilla.
Obtained a multimillion-dollar settlement for a real estate owner against a contractor who caused a fire resulting in over $50 million in damages.
Represented various insurers in the ConEd steam explosion cases that caused tens of millions of dollars in damages.
Successfully represented an insurer in a $35 million claim arising out of the explosion of a pressurized vessel used in the treatment of metal component parts for commercial airplanes.