Ethics of Insurance Defense Under ROR: Model Rule 1.7, Conflicts, and Insured's Right to Independent Counsel
Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A
This CLE webinar will offer objective legal analysis and subjective, practical suggestions about how to resolve ethical dilemmas which need to be addressed when a liability insurer agrees to defend its policyholder under a reservation of rights but proceeds to appoint defense counsel and direct the defense. The panelist will share how policyholders, insurers, and panel counsel determine whether a reservation of rights creates a disqualifying conflict of interest for panel counsel, the possible consequences if a conflict is deemed to exist, and alternative solutions.
- The rules empower policyholders to withhold consent to representation: “Just say ‘no’”
- Six conjunctive prongs of model rule 1.7
- The legal test: does a reservation of rights creates a disqualifying conflict of interest?
- The uniformity of insurance industry conduct
- How policyholders may develop admissible evidence through the duty of disclosure
- When may panel counsel ethically represent policyholders
- Strategies for policyholders, plaintiffs, insurers, and panel counsel
- Insurer defenses
Mr. Thomas will discuss these and other issues:
- Who has what power in this situation?
- When should all participants assess potential and actual conflicts of interest?
- What is the correct legal standard for determining if a reservation of right creates a disqualifying conflict of interest?
- What are policyholder practical, non-litigation remedies if an unresolved disqualifying conflict of interest exists?
- How should panel counsel respond to ethical challenges?
- How should the insurer respond to a request for independent counsel?