Last month, I had the opportunity to attend the Perrin Sexual Abuse and Litigation Conference in New York, which was co-chaired by my colleague Elizabeth Hanke. This was the second in-person and third overall conference put on by Perrin on this sensitive, but important topic, in the last two years.
Panelists and attendees included plaintiffs’ attorneys, defense attorneys, insurance companies, and consultants like KCIC. The conference aims to address a wide variety of topics relating to the litigation of sexual abuse claims, such as a nationwide survey of current laws, education on the unique and challenging nature of sexual abuse plaintiffs, defense strategy, and insurance recovery disputes.
We began the day with opening remarks to provide context to what we would be hearing, including an update on statues of limitations reform for sexual abuse claims across the nation and the challenges those reforms pose to companies and institutions. One big takeaway is that school districts, sport clubs, other youth organizations, and religious institutions should expect to face sexual abuse lawsuits in many states for the foreseeable future.
I was honored to speak on a panel about insurance archaeology for sexual abuse claims. My co-panelists were Kristen Drake of PolicyFind and Chris Carpenter of Swiss Re. Together, we gave those in attendance a quick primer on what insurance archaeology is and how we partner with an institution in such efforts. We also discussed some of the obvious challenges in locating policies that can be 50-70 years old and how insureds and insurance companies can work together more effectively in the search for lost policies.
Other panels discussed the tension between the necessity of placing monetary values on claims (and the factors that influence that value) and survivors’ desires for non-monetary compensation, such as institutional reforms, apologies, or other means.
An afternoon panel addressed some of the most common insurance coverage issues that arise when seeking recovery from an insurer for sexual abuse claims. These include the existence of coverage, the definition of occurrence, expected or intended exclusions, trigger of coverage, and the application of retentions or deductibles, though many other disputes might arise.
Overall, the conference was time well-spent on this difficult topic. KCIC is at the forefront of working with organizations facing sexual abuse claims to locate past insurance policies and help secure recovery from insurers. This conference reinforced the importance and value of the work that we do in this space.
Never miss a post. Get Risky Business tips and insights delivered right to your inbox.
Nick Sochurek has extensive experience in leading complex insurance policy reviews and analysis for a variety of corporate policyholders using relational database technology.Learn More About Nicholas