Insurers have broad obligations to defend claims against their policyholders.
However, as policyholders quickly learn when facing a claim, insurers often seek to
limit these obligations through a wide array of tactics. One common tactic is to
insist that attorneys defending a policyholder must comply with guidelines issued
by the insurer. These guidelines — often labeled litigation management guidelines,
defense counsel guidelines or billing guidelines — seek to impose detailed
limitations on defense counsel’s conduct. For instance, many guidelines prohibit or
significantly restrict critical legal tasks such as: (1) engaging in intrafirm
communications; (2) sending multiple professionals to participate in depositions,
court appearances and meetings; (3) conducting legal research; (4) drafting and
filing certain motions; (5) retaining expert witnesses; and (6) conducting nonparty
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Daniel Wolf is an associate at Gilbert LLP. Click here to read his full biography.