Insurers Notch Important Win in Opioid Insurance Coverage Case

November 9, 2017

Two Hinshaw attorneys – Scott Seaman and Larry Golub – analyzed in Law360 a recent California appellate court ruling that determined that an insurance carrier did not have to defend a pharmaceutical company accused of deceptive marketing of its opioid painkillers, because "claims involving allegations of intentional or negligent misrepresentations do not constitute an accident under a liability policy."

Golub, a Los Angeles-based partner, noted that the ruling was squarely in line with California precedent establishing that claims of fraudulent acts don't equate to a covered accidental occurrence: "California has developed a good line of cases — especially here, where the facts were stipulated and the allegations were boiled down to this fraudulent marketing scheme — saying fraud claims don't constitute a covered occurrence."

Seaman, a Chicago-based partner and co-chair of the firm's national Insurance Services Practice Group, said the ruling was significant with respect to opioid claims against pharmaceutical products "because many policies issued to such companies contain general products exclusions or exclusions for pharmaceutical products."

Read the Law360 article (subscription required)

Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP is a U.S. based law firm with offices in 11 states and London. The firm's national reputation spans the insurance industry, the professional services sector—including representation of law firms and lawyers—and other highly regulated industries, such as banking and finance and the debt collection sector. Hinshaw also provides a series of closely coordinated litigation, business advisory and transactional services to clients of all sizes as well as governmental and public sector entities.