Long-tail liabilities covered by historic insurance assets
Historical insurance assets play an important role in property transactions, mergers and acquisitions, and long tail liability exposures, such as environmental, asbestos, and product liability claims. Environmental liabilities and product liabilities that may be unknown to the seller may emerge years and even decades later after the damage occurs. Under environmental statutes like CERCLA, a broad range of parties can be held jointly and severally liable for extraordinarlily expenseive environmental cleanup, often for pollution that occurred decades ago. Under the standards of strict liability, a plaintiff need not prove that a manufacturer was negligent or at “fault,” but only that a product was defectively designed or manufactured or that the manufacturer did not warn against foreseeable dangers. Paladin assists clients in taking proactive steps towards identifying and understanding their historical insurance programs in order to protect against these long tail liabilities.
Remediation cost cap insurance policies
The firm works with clients to procure new insurance, such as environmental cost-cap policies, risk transfers, and pollution legal liability policies. Thes types of insurance are sometimes essential in negotiating real estate or corporate transactions.
Policy buy backs and site releases
Paladin Law Group assists clients in negotiating with insurance companies agreements that permit the insurer to “buy back” its policy in exchange for a financial commitment of a sum certain. These agreements can also be negotiated to release the insurer’s obligation to one particular site or to a particular part of coverage (e.g., release property damage but not bodily injury).
Any corporation moving toward merger with or purchase of another company must recognize the litigious climate in which business is transacted — and defend itself, in advance, by making sure that insurance coverage is adequate. Therefore, companies that want to grow successfully by acquistion had better be comprehensively insured — not only against events and liabilities that may arise out of the current operations of target companies, but against events that occurred long ago. Paladin Law Group counsels companies on insurance coverage issues associated with potential liabilities of companies involved in corporate mergers and acquisitions and, as part of the due diligence process, performs comprehensive audits of the company’s historical insurance program to determine whether potential liabilities may be covered.