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First-Party Property Insurance Defense Attorneys

First-Party Property

We take a 360-degree approach to first-party property insurance to support our policyholders: from guidance in policy procurement to interpreting and understanding the coverage available to navigating notice and proof of loss submissions and representing policyholders in litigation if necessary. 

Our team has substantial experience working with aggressive insurers and multimillion dollar towers of insurers attempting to deny or limit coverage for first-party property losses. We are not intimidated by insurance company tactics and are qualified in complex allocation, exhaustion, and business interruption calculations. 

Navigating the claims process is critical to obtaining a full recovery for property losses. Skipping a step can jeopardize or eliminate coverage. We know how to avoid the traps. Our experienced attorneys jump in immediately after a loss to maximize and preserve coverage by strategizing claim presentation to the insurance companies, counseling policyholders on the insurance companies’ claims investigation and loss-adjustment processes.

We work through on-site remediation and reconstruction to ensure effective documentation, and strategize proofs of loss and other supporting documentation submitted to the insurance companies. 

When adversary proceedings cannot be avoided, we represent our clients in litigation against insurance companies to obtain payment of disputed claims and defend against declaratory judgment actions filed by insurance companies. We also represent policyholders in mediations, arbitrations, and appraisals. 

After decades of exclusively representing policyholders, we have accumulated deep knowledge and understanding of the insurance industry and the insurance companies’ go-to tactics and arguments. 

Practice Leaders

Kevin Dreher

Kevin B. Dreher

Insurance Recovery and Counseling Group Co-Chair

Chicago, Grand Rapids, Southeast Michigan

P 312-214-8308

F 312-759-5646

Carrie Raver

Carrie Marie Raver

Insurance Recovery and Counseling Group Co-Chair

Fort Wayne, Chicago

P 260-425-4652

F 260-424-8316


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  • Served as counsel for a national telecommunications provider and garnered $10 million claim payment for first party losses without litigation.
  • Represented a commercial property owner in a lawsuit against an insurer for breach of contract and bad faith arising out of water intrusion from a neighboring property.
  • Advised a manufacturing client regarding a multi-million dollar flood claim.
  • Represented hotels and other corporations damaged by Hurricane Matthew in connection with insurable physical damage, business income, extra expense and other losses under first party property and time element policies.
  • Represented, as part of a team, a major food company on an insurance claim for contingent business interruption losses resulting from Hurricane Katrina. The claim resolved favorably through multiple settlements.
  • Represented an entertainment establishment in pursuit of insurance coverage for extensive vandalism property damage and business interruption. Litigation involving a claim of bad faith denial of coverage resulted in a significant recovery.
  • Represented numerous clients on a multitude of first party property claims—under commercial property, inland marine, PLL and event policies. In the aggregate, the claims total in the billions of dollars and address a variety of complex coverage issues arising out of events such as hurricanes, floods, riots and civil commotion, COVID, electrical arcing incidents, building collapse, among others. The coverage issues include dealing with the application of limits and sub-limits of coverage, number of occurrences, the operation of deductible provisions, resulting loss exception to exclusions, preservation of property, valuation, causation and anti-concurrent causation clauses, business interruption and extra expense, timeframe for period of recovery and extended period of recovery.
  • Represented a family in a coverage dispute with its Homeowner’s carrier for damages to the structure and personal property that was destroyed when an out building on the property burned down. The insurer argued, alternatively, that the building was not covered, that the coverage was limited, and that the insurer had not shown the value of the personal property that was damaged. The homeowners reached a favorable settlement.
  • Represented homeowners in lawsuits against insurers for breach of contract and bad faith arising out of flood and other water damage claims.
  • Prosecuted various first party, business interruption, contingent business interruption, and extra expense claims due to losses suffered by corporate policyholders across various industries during Hurricanes Wilma, Rita, Katrina, and other catastrophic events.
  • Represented a homeowner in a lawsuit against an insurer for breach of contract and bad faith arising out of hillside collapse.
  • Represented a company in a first party property insurance dispute regarding coverage for losses due to mine subsidence. After the carrier asked for endless amounts of information, with demands appearing to be like formal discovery requests, and no indication of forthcoming payment, we filed suit against the carrier for coverage. Shortly after discovery uncovered crucial documents, the parties engaged in mediation, and reached a favorable settlement.
  • Represented a restaurant in fire loss litigation for property damage and business interruption against an insurer that selectively passed along evidence to police authorities in an effort to persuade that the fire was the result of arson. At trial, the insurance company’s bad faith resulted in a significant award in excess of the policy’s coverage limit.
  • Represented a Fortune 500 media company in pursuit of coverage for first party and time element losses resulting from severe damage to broadcasting studio in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.
  • Represented the owner of a building that was just finishing being rehabilitated for senior citizen apartments, when a windstorm tore off a part of the roof, damaging the roof and allowing rain to enter the building and cause water damage in multiple floors.
  • Represented homeowners in a dispute with insurers over losses arising out of jewelry theft.
  • Represented a client in a property insurance claim resulting from a lightning strike to a client’s facility. After the insurance carrier took an aggressive position regarding coverage for repair, remediation, and cleanup work already performed, the team worked with the client and carrier to get the claim resolved favorably.
  • Represented a food company in connection with a property damage, business interruption, and extra expense claim arising out of a catastrophic fire. Worked with the insured, forensic accountants, and equipment consultants to recover significant payments without litigation.
  • Represented a paper manufacturer regarding the recovery of defense and indemnity costs incurred in connection with numerous claims of bodily injury and/or property damage against insolvent liability carriers.

COVID-19 Representations

  • Represented a manufacturer in claims of Tenant’s Prohibited Access coverage and property damage arising from COVID-19.
  • Represented apparel companies, a real estate and investment management firm, a hotel owner, a restaurant owner, casinos, and professional sports teams in COVID-19 business interruption claims, and obtained one of the only appellate court victories for an insured regarding property insurance coverage for COVID-19-related losses.
  • Represented a property management group in losses arising from COVID-19.
  • Represented a health care organization in losses arising from COVID-19.
  • Represented a franchisor in recovering losses arising from COVID-19.
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