Commercial Disputes & Intellectual Property Claims

Faced with commercial disputes and intellectual property claims, policyholders need to know they can count on their insurance coverage to help fund their defense and, if necessary, indemnify them. Long a leader in insurance coverage, Reed Smith has aggressively and successfully recovered insurance policy proceeds on behalf of clients operating in a number of industries.

Our Insurance Recovery Team has obtained reimbursement under commercial liability policies for actions involving financial services products, computer services, home and office services, and advertising and marketing activities, to name a few. We have addressed coverage issues arising out of intellectual property infringement, common law negligence, breach of contract and other civil claims.

Our team gets results:

  • In a case of first impression, we persuaded a U.S. District Court in Texas to rule that a “wrongful seizure” claim asserted under the Lanham Act was covered by a commercial liability policy’s “malicious prosecution” coverage grant. This case is the leading authority on the issue.
  • Our team obtained summary judgment for an air freshener product company in a federal court action, awarding more than $850,000 in insurance proceeds to reimburse the client for attorneys fees and costs incurred in the defense of claims of trade dress infringement, unfair competition and false advertising.
  • We represented the metals manufacturing arm of a global shipbuilder in insurance coverage litigation before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. The case involved an issue of first impression, whether a breach of contract is an “occurrence” that triggers coverage under a commercial general liability policy.
  • We secured a ruling that (1) the so-called “first publication exclusion” does not preclude advertising injury coverage for material which (though first published during the policy period) was similar to other advertising material that was first published prior to the policy’s inception, and (2) that “lost profits” awarded for Lanham Act trademark and trade dress violations are “damages” within the meaning of a standard commercial liability policy, the insurability of which is not precluded by public policy.
  • We recovered millions of dollars in attorneys fees under a commercial general liability policy on behalf of a medical device manufacturer that was sued for alleged antitrust violations.