“I don't know how we would have found answers or how to begin if they had not coached us through the process.”
The policyholder's view on the Restatement of Liability Insurance
by Dan Wade
With spring just around the corner, things at the American Law Institute ("ALI") are heating up. The ALI is a Philadelphia-based group of law professors and lawyers that draft consensus treatises called "Restatements" on various areas of law. These treatises are oft-cited and taught in law schools around the country. They are also very persuasive to courts, generally representing the majority view on a particular area of law. There is a Restatement on Contracts, Torts, etc., and now Liability Insurance. UP Executive Director Amy Bach is an official Advisor to the Restatement of Liability Insurance project (formerly the Principles of the Law of Liability Insurance).
ALI Director Lance Liebman has said that the project aims to draft "coherent doctrinal statements based largely on current state law, but also grounded in economic efficiency and in fairness to both insureds and insurers.” To achieve this goal, the ALI has brought together advocates on both sides to debate fair rules that govern the insurer-insured relationship, including the duty to defend, the duty of good faith, and policy interpretation. UP has worked closely over the past few years with policyholder advocates, submitting letters and discussing topics of concern with project leadership, to ensure that the final product necessairly reflects the policyholder's view.
This week, UP Staff Attorney Dan Wade will be traveling to Philadelphia to attend a conference on the project at Rutgers University Law School, hosted by UP adviser Distinguished Professor of Law Jay M. Feinman. Next month, Executive Director Bach will also travel to Philadelphia for the annual meeting of ALI Advisors to debate the next chapter of the project.
Policyholder attorney Lori Masters is coordinating with UP on the Restatement project.
About The Blogger
Dan Wade joined United Policyholders in January 2014. As Staff Attorney, he works primarily on the Advocacy and Action Program, helping draft and coordinate amicus curiae briefs, legislative advocacy, and legal research in partnership with UP staff and volunteers. Dan's relationship with UP began as a student in Professor Ken Klein's disaster law seminar where Executive Director Amy Bach was a guest lecturer. As a law student volunteer for UP, he researched trends in bad faith insurance law and tracked Superstorm Sandy insurance litigation. Dan gained transactional and litigation experience as a law clerk for Higgs, Fletcher and Mack, a mid-sized San Diego-based business law firm and externed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Regional Counsel, Region 5 (Chicago). Before joining UP, he was a post-bar intern at the Alliance for the Great Lakes, a Chicago-based environmental group.
Dan earned his undergraduate degree from San Diego State University in 2007 and his Juris Doctor from California Western School of Law in San Diego in 2013. He was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 2013 and the California Bar in 2014. He is a member of various professional associations, including: the American Bar Association - Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, where he serves as Vice Chair of the Property Insurance Law Committee, the American Association for Justice, and the Consumer Attorneys of California. Dan also serves as Vice Director of the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Disaster Legal Services Program, a partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency that delivers free legal assistance to low-income persons affected by disasters.