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Insurance Settlement Dilemma: The Policyholder's Right to Settle When Insured and Insurer Disagree

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will discuss what options exist when the insurer and policyholder disagree over how to resolve third-party liability, with an emphasis on the conditions under which a policyholder may settle the claim on its own, the risks of doing so, and its right to indemnity from the insurer.


Policyholders and insurers often disagree about the financial, legal, emotional, and business costs involved in settling or litigating claims, litigation and settlement strategies, the value of the claim, and the amount and structure of any potential settlement.

Who has control over settlement decisions and the rights and duties of the insured and insurer depend on numerous factors. Differing state laws, reservations of rights, policy terms, and the facts and allegations at issue in the litigation, among other things, all may have an impact on the parties’ rights and obligations regarding settlement.

Settlement disputes arise in differing contexts. In some cases, the policyholder prefers to settle any underlying claims while the insurer prefers to contest liability. In other cases, the positions are reversed. In both instances, disputes may exist about the particulars of the settlement. Counsel need to understand the full range of options available.

Listen as this experienced panel discusses what options are available when the insurer and policyholder reach an impasse and the risks to both parties.



  1. How the issue arises
  2. Policyholder options and risks
  3. Insurer options and risks


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • Can the insured settle if the insurer is still defending?
  • When does the insurer breach its contractual obligations so as to remove its right to rely on the voluntary settlement provision?
  • What kind of notice must be given to the insurer before a settlement takes place?
  • Must the insured give notice to the insurer if the insurer has denied a duty to indemnify?


Bertschi, Scott
Scott F. Bertschi

Clyde & Co US

Mr. Bertschi focuses his practice on insurance coverage, professional liability defense and data breach response. He...  |  Read More

Edwards, Charles
Charles P. Edwards

Barnes & Thornburg

Mr. Edwards is a seasoned trial lawyer and insurance claim advocate who is co-chair of the firm’s Insurance...  |  Read More

Gliedman, Diana
Diana S. Gliedman

Anderson Kill

Ms. Gliedman, a shareholder with Anderson Kill's insurance recovery group, represents policyholders in multi-party,...  |  Read More

Selvin, Peter
Peter S. Selvin

Ervin Cohen & Jessup

Mr. Selvin, Chair of ECJ's Insurance Coverage and Recovery Department, is a business trial lawyer with over 30...  |  Read More

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