Federal Judge Orders Deposition of Attorney in Insurance Bad Faith Case

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Ultimately, Judge Robart found that because the attorney in Water’s Edge investigated the association’s claim for the insurance company and drafted the insurer’s coverage denial letter, the court found that the attorney fell within the factors set forth in Cedell.

Judge Robart further noted that the attorney’s assertions of privilege did not bar the attorney’s deposition concerning the quasi-fiduciary tasks the attorney had performed for the insurer.

However, in addition to limiting the scope of questioning at the deposition, the court’s order also allows the insurance company to object if the deposition moves into areas involving legal advice offered to the carrier on its own legal exposure.

Conclusion

This case underscores the broadening scope of discovery available to parties who are involved in insurance bad faith litigation, which now includes the ability to take the deposition of an insurer’s attorney who was involved in the claim adjustment process.