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Perkins Coie Continues Expansion of National Insurance Coverage Practice with Addition of Five Attorneys

Press Release

WASHINGTON D.C. (September 20, 2011) – Perkins Coie announced today that it has added five new attorneys to its national Insurance Coverage practice in the Washington, D.C. office. Joining the firm from Dickstein Shapiro, Leon Kellner  and Vivek Chopra join as partners and Christina Buschmann, Aaron Coombs and Laura Dellatorre join as associates. This expansion comes less than two months after partners Selena Linde and Michael Sharkey joined the Washington, D. C. Office, also from Dickstein Shapiro.

"We are very pleased to have this new group on board with us, Leon and Vivek are exceptional policyholder attorneys and add to our growing bench of first-chair litigators," said Tim Burns, Firmwide Insurance Coverage Litigation practice Chair. "We are continually working to expand the group with premier talent and the combined trial skills and litigation experience of this group will help us continue to provide exceptional service to our clients in all aspects of insurance coverage litigation."

The group will focus their practice on the representation of corporate policyholders in insurance recovery efforts in state and federal courts. They will advise clients on environmental liability, first-party losses, directors and officers insurance, asbestos coverage, errors and omissions policies, product liability, employer’s liability, employee dishonesty and bad faith.

"Perkins Coie's policyholder practice has emerged on the national scene in the last two years as an industry leader on the policyholder side," said Kellner. "The firm's reputation as a prestigious national full service law firm and its commitment to represent only policyholders, together with its growing bench of now more than 45 talented policyholder attorneys made the decision to join Perkins an easy decision for us."

Kellner is a policyholder veteran with 24 years of experience representing policyholders where he has been involved in all aspects of insurance coverage litigation and has successfully recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients. He has ranked as a leading policyholder attorney by Chambers USA from 2005 to 2011, both nationally and in Washington, D.C. Kellner received his J.D. from Harvard Law School and graduated cum laude with a B.A. from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

Chopra represents policyholders in state and federal courts and has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for his corporate policyholder clients. He has represented major pharmaceutical, hospitality and telecommunications companies in a wide range of insurance coverage disputes. His has represented Fortune 100 companies in multi-month trials. Chopra earned his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and received his B.A. from Cornell University.

Buschmann received her J.D. from The College of William & Mary and her A.B. from Dartmouth College. Coombs earned his J.D. from University of Virginia School of Law where he served as the executive editor for the Virginia Journal of Social Policy and Law and received his B.Sc. from McGill University. Dellatorre received her J.D. from Harvard Law School and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. from Dartmouth College.

They join an Insurance Coverage group that exclusively represents policyholders and has the depth, experience and sophistication to handle the most complex coverage disputes involving multiple insurers, while at the same time it is efficient enough to enforce a policyholder's rights to coverage in a dispute involving only one insurer. The group has extensive experience representing policyholders in all types of dispute resolution proceedings, ranging from pre-litigation negotiation and advocacy to litigation in both state and federal courts throughout the United States to domestic and international arbitrations.

About Perkins Coie: Founded in 1912, Perkins Coie has more than 950 lawyers in 19 offices across the United States and Asia. We provide a full array of corporate, commercial litigation and intellectual property legal services to a broad range of clients, from FORTUNE 50 corporations to small, independent start-ups, as well as public and not-for-profit organizations.