Reinsurers perform a unique and essential function in today’s global economy by providing security to protect against the market’s greatest risks. Those highly sophisticated transactions give rise to complex legal and business issues and disputes. Cozen O’Connor has been providing responsive, sophisticated and authoritative legal counsel to reinsurance clients for more than 40 years.

The firm’s reinsurance attorneys have extensive experience representing insurers and reinsurers based in the U.S., London, and Bermuda in all types of reinsurance transactions and disputes involving virtually every type of underlying risk. 

Our lawyers have successfully represented clients in matters involving property damage, asbestos, medical stop loss, business interruption, professional liability, personal accident, professional sports disability, variable annuities, long-term care, workers compensation carve-out, film finance, life and long-term disability, as well as clash cover, fronting arrangements, and offshore captives. The firm played a central role in nearly every major loss occurrence affecting the reinsurance industry in recent memory, including 9/11, Deepwater Horizon, Lockerbie-Pan Am 103, Exxon Valdez, and hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Wilma, and Ike.

Cozen O’Connor also offers comprehensive legal advice on regulatory and administrative reinsurance matters of the sort that very few firms can credibly claim to cover. We establish domestic and off-shore captives, prepare applications and negotiate regulatory approval for insurance company and captive formations, defend companies subject to examinations and inquiries by insurance regulators, conduct departmental reviews and assist cedents with reinsurance programs.

Most importantly, Cozen O’Connor is cognizant of the fact that every client and every matter is unique. Our attorneys have the requisite knowledge and resources to be able to tailor their advice to provide targeted, cost-effective representation.



  • Represent clients in litigation, arbitration, mediation and ADR, and administrative proceedings
  • Handle complex multinational disputes, often in coordination with counsel from several countries
  • Create, implement and document reinsurance programs
  • Manage reinsurance audit oversight and audit response
  • Draft reinsurance treaties and facultative certificates for every type of risk
  • Advise on regulatory matters, including credit for reinsurance, reinsurance collateral requirements, solvency requirements, brokerage issues, reinsurance trusts, alternative reinsurance mechanisms and licensing issues for accredited reinsurers
  • Assist with portfolio and bulk risk transfers
  • Provide counsel in dealings with statutory liquidators and receivers



Court Holds Excise Tax Does Not Apply to Foreign Retrocessional Reinsurance [Global Insurance Alert]

February 27, 2014

In Validus Reinsurance, Ltd. v. United States, No. 13-0109 (ABJ), 2014 WL 462886 (D.D.C. 2014), the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia found that a foreign reinsurer was not subject to excise tax under Internal Revenue Code Section 4371 when purchasing retrocessional coverage for the assumed reinsurance of U.S. risks. While foreign reinsurance contracts are subject to excise tax, the court held that Section 4371’s plain language did not encompass retrocessional reinsurance transactions.

Cozen O'Connor London Office 2013 Year in Review

December 30, 2013

The Cozen O’Connor London of is pleased to provide you with our 2013 Year In Review, a newsletter discussing select cases in insurance coverage, subrogation, dispute resolution and commercial matters.

Highmark Can't Shake $3.5M Judgment In Fee Dispute [Law 360]

December 19, 2013

A Pennsylvania state judge denied Highmark Life Insurance Co.'s bid to vacate a $3.6 million arbitration award in favor of Elite Underwriting Services LLC, saying that the exclusion of testimony by the parties' reinsurance broker did not warrant a vacatur.

"Whither Grigsby? STOLI and the Assault on Insurance Interest" [New Appleman on Insurance]

December 16, 2013

In 1911, Oliver Wendell Holmes, writing for the majority of the United States Supreme Court, unequivocally (if unknowingly) established the legal distinction between the secondary life market and what has become known as stranger originated life insurance (“STOLI”). The common law in both England and the United States long-abhorred insurance without an interest as a “mischievous kind of gaming” and so developed the insurable interest doctrine i.e., that an owner of a policy must have an interest in that insured. However, the application of the doctrine to specific cases involving the purchase of life insurance produced varied results throughout the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries. In Grigsby v. Russell, Justice Holmes established that a life insurance policy, once purchased in good faith, could subsequently be assigned or otherwise alienated by its rightful owner. Grigsby brought clear, manageable legal principles to nearly two centuries of inconsistent jurisprudence on the insurable interest doctrine, principles that were subsequently adopted by statute in all of the jurisdictions of the United States.

SDNY Predicts California Would Adopt Bad Faith Exception to Notice-Prejudice Rule [Global Insurance Alert]

August 26, 2013

The U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York recently granted, in part, a reinsurer’s motion for summary judgment on a late notice defense, but ruled the issue of whether a reinsurer was prejudiced by the cedent’s late notice will have to be determined at trial. In Ins. Co. of the State of Pa. v. Argonaut Ins. Co., the Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania, filed suit against its quota-share reinsurer, Argonaut, seeking reimbursement under a facultative reinsurance certificate. ICSOP sought to recover losses paid to its insured for asbestos bodily injury claims pursuant to a reinsured excess umbrella policy.

Confidential? Not Necessarily [Best's Review]

June 10, 2013

Richard Mason, of the Global Insurance Department, discusses attorney-client privilege in Best's Review.

Good-Faith Basis of Settlement Agreements Between Ceding Insurers and Insureds Is a Question of Fact [Global Insurance Alert!]

January 31, 2012

Good-Faith Basis of Settlement Agreements Between Ceding Insurers and Insureds Is a Question of Fact - Global Insurance Alert! - The "follow the fortunes" and "follow the settlements" doctrines often preclude reinsurers from re-examining the conduct of cedents in settling claims. However, a recent ruling by Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, calls into question this conventional wisdom.

Law Firm Disqualified After Its Client’s Party-Appointed Arbitrator Provided It With Panel Deliberations [Insurance Coverage Alert!]

October 12, 2011

Law Firm Disqualified After Its Client’s Party-Appointed Arbitrator Provided It With Panel Deliberations - Insurance Coverage Alert! - On October 3, 2011, the U.S. District Court for Southern District of New York disqualified a law firm from acting as counsel in a reinsurance arbitration. Northwestern National Ins. Co. v. Insco, Ltd., No. 11 Civ. 1124 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 3, 2011).

The Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan: A Factual Overview and Preliminary First-Party Analysis [Cozen O'Connor White Paper]

April 07, 2011

The Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan: A Factual Overview and Preliminary First-Party Analysis - Cozen O'Connor White Paper - Whether or not you are involved in addressing claims under first party policies, we trust you will find the factual information contained in the report informative. In the event you need additional information or assistance, please contact Rick Mackowsky who will act as our "expeditor" to make sure you are getting to the right person at the firm to handle any issues you have.

In The News

138 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 28, 2019

Best Lawyers selected 138 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 21 of the firm’s national offices for inclusion in the 2020 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Cozen O’Connor Names Six New Shareholders

September 07, 2017

Cozen O’Connor is proud to announce the promotion of six members to shareholders of the firm: David Brisco (San Diego), Michael de Leeuw (New York), John Dickenson (West Palm Beach), Jonathan Lichtenstein (Philadelphia), William Walsh (Seattle), and Ingrid Welch (Philadelphia).

Three Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Earn Recognition in 2016 Chambers Global Rankings

June 09, 2016

Joseph Tilson and Susan Eisenberg recognized as worldwide leaders in labor and employment law, Paul Dowsey recognized as a leader in insurance.


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