Luke E. Debevec

Luke E. Debevec



  • Notre Dame Law School, 2004, J.D., cum laude, Articles Editor of Notre Dame Law Review
  • Georgetown University, 2001, B.A., cum laude

Professional Admissions / Qualifications

  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court - Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court - District of New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court - Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. Court of Appeals - Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals - Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals - Sixth Circuit

Luke joined Reed Smith in January 2008 and is a member of the firm's Insurance Recovery Group. Luke handles insurance and captive reinsurance coverage cases and arbitrations from inception through resolution across the country and internationally.

Luke has litigated, arbitrated, and settled numerous types of insurance, captive insurance, and reinsurance disputes:

  • London, Bermuda and domestic arbitrations, including disputes based on the "Bermuda Form";
  • Environmental pollution and contamination claims arising from historic industrial contamination, oil and chemical spills and leaks, pipeline ruptures, fires, explosions, and railroad derailments;
  • False Claims Act litigation and other governmental investigations and "whistleblower" claims;
  • Employment and work-place liabilities;
  • Product liability litigation and product recalls;
  • Liabilities faced by hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, and healthcare organizations;
  • Claims against churches and religious or civic organizations;
  • Civil rights cases and other municipal and governmental liabilities;
  • Claims against private companies providing services for local governments, including probation, prison medical or educational services;
  • Claims against directors and officers;
  • Fidelity and commercial crime losses, including forgery, theft and disappearance claims;
  • Claims arising from complex financial instruments and real estate transactions;
  • First-party property losses and business interruption claims, such as those arising from fires, explosions, landslides, floods, storms, and contamination; and
  • Claims involving additional insureds, insured contracts, loss payees, certificates of insurance, and contractual indemnity agreements.

Luke has won significant insurance matters through litigation and arbitration and on appeal, but frequently resolves his clients' problems without need for these mechanisms. Luke has argued before the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court and various state and federal trial courts. In 2012, Luke played a lead role in presenting and cross-examining witnesses at a $100+ million international arbitration involving property damage and business interruption loss resulting from an export grain elevator explosion covered by property insurance and captive reinsurance. In 2016, Luke helped lead a team of attorneys through a London Arbitration involving coverage for the costs of a massive inland oil release and interpretation of a "Time Element" Pollution Endorsement. Luke has helped policyholders and their captives to recover hundreds of millions of dollars from their insurance and reinsurance companies.

Luke frequently counsels policyholders and captives concerning their insurance programs and policy wording, risk management for corporate transactions, claims analysis, and strategies for maximizing loss recoveries.

Luke is the Partner Chair and along with Kevin Hara, is the co-founder of LEADRS (Looking For Excellence And Advancement of Disabled Attorneys at Reed Smith), a diversity affinity group that is part of Reed Smith’s diversity initiative. LEADRS strives to support and enhance the professional, personal, and career development of attorneys with disabilities of all types, physical and mental.

Employment History

  • 2008 - Reed Smith
    • Chair/Partner Liaison of LEADRS (Reed Smith’s U.S. Attorneys Disability Affinity Group)
  • 2005 - Anderson Kill & Olick, P.C.
  • 2004 - Yost & Tretta, LLP

Honors & Awards

  • Named a Pennsylvania Rising Star by Super Lawyers magazine, Pennsylvania (2010, 2012-2016)

Notable Quotes

  • 4 February 2016 "Trans name-change project expands locally" Philadelphia Gay News