Law Offices of Jennifer Yerxa-Bozeat, Concord, California
Provide comprehensive alternative dispute resolution services, including mediating disputes involving insurance coverage and construction defect.
Century Surety Company, Scottsdale, Arizona
Senior Claims Representative, Construction Defect Unit
February 2010 – December 2010
Responsible for investigating, evaluating, negotiating and disposing of new and existing construction defect claims in the Construction Defect Unit. Responsibilities included handling files from inception to resolution, examining both the facts and the relevant coverage issues and drafting company position letters. Responsibilities further included managing complex construction defect litigation in those cases where Century Surety Company was providing a defense to its insured(s). In lieu of retaining outside coverage counsel, I was responsible for identifying files with major coverage issues and using my resources to evaluate significant coverage issues by researching the law and drafting coverage memos with my conclusions and recommendations. At the request of management, I reviewed coverage position letters of certain claims adjusters in the construction defect unit.
Cozen O’Connor, San Diego, California
Attorney - Insurance Coverage Department
Partner, September 2005 – February 2008
Responsibilities included providing coverage advice and counseling to clients, including AIG, Hartford, Zurich, ACE and Great American. Areas of advice and counseling include both first party and third party policies. In the third party context, I have assisted claim professionals in the handling of commercial liability, construction defect claims, errors & omissions and directors & officers’ claims from inception to conclusion. In addition to providing written coverage advice for clients, I have been heavily involved with both the prosecution of declaratory relief actions on various complex coverage issues and have defended bad faith suits against the firm’s clients. I also served as outside counsel for ACE USA and worked directly with the excess casualty underwriters in drafting manuscript endorsements. In addition, my experience has included a substantial caseload of commercial litigation files.
ACE USA, New York, New York
Excess Casualty Claims
January 2005 – August 2005
Responsible for investigating, evaluating, negotiating and disposing of new and existing excess layer claims. Responsibilities include handling excess coverage and exposure files involving complex claims in excess of $2 million to $10 million from inception to resolution. Responsibilities further include the drafting of company position letters and significant contact with brokers and insureds. While at ACE, I had significant contact with the Excess Casualty Underwriters and worked daily with the underwriters drafting manuscript endorsements. I was further in charge of organizing and presenting various seminars to claims and underwriting addressing new and developing coverage issues. Responsibilities further included the selection, retention and active management of panel counsel retained for litigated files. Advised corporate executives regarding various compliance issues pertaining to Sarbanes-Oxley as well as compliance with relevant state and federal regulations.
AIG Technical Services, Inc., New York, New York
Excess Casualty Claims, Excess Coverage Department
Complex Director, October 2003 – December 2004
Responsible for investigating, evaluating, negotiating and disposing of new and existing excess layer claims in the Excess Coverage Department. Responsibilities included handling excess coverage files from inception to resolution, including drafting of company position letters. Responsibilities further included managing complex litigation involving AIG, including breach of contract, declaratory relief and bad faith actions. The bulk of my claims handling experience covered Commercial General Liability claims ranging from intellectual property disputes, sexual abuse claims and construction defect litigation. Responsibilities further included the selection, retention and active management of panel counsel retained for litigated files.
Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, San Diego, California
Attorney - Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith Department
Partner, January 2003 – October 2003
Associate, July 2002 – December 2002
Lead insurance coverage partner at Lewis Brisbois’ San Diego office supervising five attorneys in handling various coverage, declaratory relief and bad faith files. Actively managed and monitored a number of complex coverage files with potential exposures exceeding $100 million. Researched, analyzed and drafted coverage opinions for third-party liability claims and subsequent monitoring of claims to completion including, but not limited to, participation in mediations, arbitrations, and informal claim resolution. Resolved a number of excess/umbrella matters with substantial exposure for little or no pay-out. Prosecuted declaratory relief actions and defended bad faith actions including preparation of a number of successful dispositive motions that resolved the litigation. Scope of coverage work included analysis of various types of coverages including excess/umbrella, commercial general liability, professional liability, errors & omissions, homeowner’s and auto policies.
Sedgwick Detert Moran & Arnold, Irvine, California
Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith Department
Associate, November 2001 – July 2002
Analyzed, researched and provided legal opinions presented by primary, excess and homeowner’s policies. Represented property and casualty insurers in the prosecution of declaratory relief actions and the defense of bad faith actions. Represented insureds in various general liability defense files. My departure from Sedgwick occurred when Lewis Brisbois acquired the insurance coverage and bad faith practice group from Sedgwick.
McCormick Barstow Sheppard Wayte & Carruth, Fresno, California
Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith Department
Associate, August 1998 – November 2001
Responsible for monitoring all excess/umbrella coverage files in the insurance coverage department including preparation of detailed coverage analyses and monitoring of files until resolution. Researched, analyzed and drafted over one hundred coverage opinions analyzing various types of policies including commercial general liability, excess, umbrella, homeowners, auto, errors & emissions and directors and officers policies. Prosecuted declaratory relief actions and defended bad faith actions, including drafting of all discovery and dispositive motions. Attended various mediations and arbitrations representing carriers’ interests.
Admitted In California State Bar in 1998 (SBN 197875)
Admitted United States District Court (Northern, Southern, Eastern & Central Districts of California)
University of San Diego, School of Law, Juris Doctor, Cum Laude, May 1998 (Graduated Top 6%)
Honors: Order of the Coif
American Jurisprudence Award, Bankruptcy
American Jurisprudence Award, Labor Law
American Jurisprudence Award, Wills & Trusts
University of Hawaii, Bachelor of Arts in History, with distinction, May 1995