2022 DRI Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute

March 21–23, 2022 | Houston, Texas

2022 DRI Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute

Join DRI Insurance Defense Attorneys in Houston!

What is on the horizon for the insurance industry? Join DRI in Houston, TX for its 2022 Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute, March 21-23, 2022, to find out! Hear from experts about how you can place your practice at the forefront of the future of insurance coverage, and delve into hot topics like cybersecurity, firm management in a post-COVID world, and more.

Plus, expand your book of business while enjoying the city of Houston during networking events, dine-arounds, and more. From NASA’s Johnson Space Center to the Museum District, consisting of nineteen museums, galleries, and community spaces, the city of Houston truly has it all! We hope to see you there!

View registration information here.

What You Will Learn:

  • How to address social inflation and be prepared to proactively confront the possibility of a nuclear verdict
  • How risk sharing, including indemnity agreements, impact the energy and petrochemical industry
  • The latest developments involving the “duty to cooperate” including how it has impacted ongoing litigation, including but not limited to sexual abuse litigation
  • What is on the horizon for the insurance industry? Hear from the experts about how you can place your practice at the forefront of the future of insurance coverage

Expand Your Network By:

  • Engaging in the Insurance Law Committee’s service project.
  • Dining at great restaurants with new friends and old attending the seminar.
  • Engaging in the DRI for Life event, where we will run through several of Houston’s incredible parks!

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Thank You to DRI's Insurance Law Committee Leadership

Jeffrey D. Van Volkenburg
Jeffrey D. Van Volkenburg
Program Chair
Jamie Hull
Jamie Hull
Program Vice Chair
Kathy Maus
Kathy Maus
Committee Chair
Jonathan Schwartz
Jonathan Schwartz
Committee Vice Chair
Daniel W. Gerber
Law Institute

Join the Insurance Law Committee

Registration Information

DRI Member Pricing: $995
Non-Member Pricing: $1,295

DRI Member Pricing: $1,295
Non-Member Pricing: $1,595

Early Bird Pricing: $695
Regular Pricing: $995

Register by February 4, 2022 to receive the early registration rate.

*If your membership recently lapsed, please renew your membership prior to registering to ensure you receive your discounted member rate. If you would like to join DRI to receive the member pricing and see the benefits of becoming a member, click here to go to the Application page.

Pricing: $895 per person

**Group registration is for registering 5 or more attendees, members and non-members. There is one free registration with every 10 registrations. You must lock in the rate three weeks prior to the seminar. If you want to register for the group pricing, please send an email to rstiner@dri.org (online registration is not available for this offering).

Agenda with Speakers

*Schedule and Speakers subject to change

Monday, March 21, 2022

Time (Central) Session Description
1:00 p.m. Registration
2:00 p.m. Welcome & Introductions

Jeffrey D. Van Volkenburg, Varner & Van Volkenburg, PLLC, Clarksburg, West Virginia
Jamie L. Hull, Kaufman Dolowich & Voluck, Chicago, Illinois
2:10 p.m. On The Horizon: What is Next For the Insurance Industry

This session is designed to provide an interactive discussion on what the insurance industry will see as emerging issues and trends in the future. From the increased use of biometric data to the way claims are processed, this presentation is designed to provide a view of what the insurance industry can expect and provide thoughtful discussion about what members of the industry are seeing today that could impact the future.

Michael M. Marick, Skarzynski Marick & Black LLP, Chicago, Illinois
Michael J. Baumel, Axis Insurance, Chicago, Illinois
3:10 p.m. Ageism and Bridging the Age GAP

Claims professionals and lawyers are moving around more than ever. The pandemic has fundamentally changed the workplace with differences concerning whether people want to continue working at home or in the office. Questions about how firms are going to bring people back to the office and pertinent firm management questions abound. This presentation will address the issues associated with the changes in the work environment.

James R. Courie, McAngus Goudelock & Courie, Columbia, South Carolina
Shalyn S. McKitt, Balch & Bingham, LLP, Birmingham, Alabama
4:00 p.m. Insurance Law Committee Business Meeting (Open to all)
6:00 p.m. Networking Reception
7:30 p.m. Dine-Arounds

Reconnect with friends and create new ones at local Dine-Arounds and enjoy the Houston area! Sign-up for Dine-Arounds here.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Time (Central) Session Description
7:00 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:00 a.m. Welcome and Introduction

Daniel W. Gerber, Gerber, Ciano, Kelly, Brady, LLP, Buffalo, New York
Jeffrey D. Van Volkenburg, Varner & Van Volkenburg, PLLC, Clarksburg, West Virginia
8:15 a.m. Third-Party Administrators - First Party Considerations

This session will examine the interplay between third-party administrators, insurers, and defense counsel and how all stakeholders must be keenly aware of privilege considerations and communications must be analyzed within the broader context of the tri-partite relationship. This program will focus on the ethics considerations present in the context of the relationship between these stakeholders.

Melanie Lockett, Lowe Stein Lowe, Stein, Hoffman, Allweiss, & Hauver, LLP, New Orleans, Louisiana
Robert Blasio, Gallagher Bassett Specialty, Houston, Texas
9:15 a.m. The Continued Evolution of the Duty to Cooperate

Learn how the “duty to cooperate” continues to evolve around new and emerging legal issues as well as the foundational principles necessary to correctly analyze and handle issues that arise in your practice. Learn how the duty to cooperate has been handled in ongoing litigation across the country including but limited to sexual abuse litigation.

Ashlyn Capote, Goldberg Segalla, Buffalo, New York
10:15 a.m. Refreshment Break
10:45 a.m. How Does The Industry Respond To Social Inflation and Nuclear Verdicts?

Learn how social inflation is playing out in our courts today and how to combat these increased costs to insurers. This session will also discuss “nuclear verdicts” and what claims adjusters and attorneys need to be aware of and looking for to avoid adverse and problematic results at trial.

Mark Bennett, Safety National, St. Louis, Missouri
Brent Anderson, Taylor Anderson, LLP, Denver, Colorado
11:45 a.m. Lunch (on your own)
1:30 p.m. The Cyber Battleground: The Latest Developments

Learn about the latest developments in “silent” cyber claims as well as an overview of emerging trends and developments in data privacy claims. The program will also address how firm’s can be proactive in safeguarding their client’s data and information.

Gena L. Sluga, Christina, Dichter & Sluga, P.C., Phoenix, Arizona
2:30 p.m. Adjourn and Refreshment Break
3:00 p.m. Explore Houston with Colleagues

Enjoy exploring Houston with colleagues aboard the Joyride Houston tour bus which will drive you around the city for a true insider’s perspective. The bus will stop for photo opportunities at the most picturesque spots. Voted as one of the top five activities in Houston, the sightseeing tour shows you a side of the city that you might otherwise have never known. The tour will last around an hour and fifteen minutes.

Tickets are $49/per person and payment must be made in advance to Jamie Hull via Venmo (@Jamie-Hull-9) after signing up. To sign-up for the tour, please click here.*

*Space is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. For any questions, please contact Jamie Hull. The deadline to purchase tickets is Monday, March 21 at 2:00 p.m. (CDT). Tickets are non-refundable unless it is canceled because the minimum of 15 tickets sold has not been met.
6:00 p.m. Networking Reception
7:30 p.m. Dine-Arounds

Reconnect with friends and create new ones at local Dine-Arounds and enjoy the Houston area! Sign-up for Dine-Arounds here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Time (Central) Session Description
6:15 a.m. DRI For Life Event - Run Through Downtown Houston Park

Join us for a brief run from the hotel to Sam Houston Park, which is a short distance from the hotel. Sam Houston Park, situated in the middle of downtown Houston, contains includes a small pond with a fountain, wetland garden, gazebo, trail/walkways, Neuhaus garden, Houston Armillary Sphere Sculpture, and USS Houston Memorial Sculpture. The run will also pass important landmarks in downtown Houston. We will meet in the hotel lobby at 6:15 a.m. on Wednesday, March 23.
8:00 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
9:00 a.m. Bad Faith and Property Breakouts

For more details, click on "Bad Faith and Property Breakouts (Wednesday)" tab.
12:30 p.m. Adjourn

Bad Faith and Property Breakouts (Wednesday 9:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.)

Bad Faith (Breakout 1)

Time (Central) Session Description
9:00 a.m. Time Limit Demands: The Latest Developments From Around the Country

This session is designed to provide an overview of the latest trends with time limit demands including recent case law from around the country.

Ellen Van Meir Nicolaides, Fink, Thorpe, Michaelides, Sullivan, LLP, Dallas, Texas
Erik San Julian, TransRe, New York City, New York
10:00 a.m. What do I Owe? Considerations Between Covered and Non-Covered Claims

This session will discuss how to appropriately analyze the breakdown between covered and non-covered claims, including how to avoid potential bad faith exposure.

Heather Arias, Skyward Specialty Insurance, Mesa, Arizona
Ann Odelson, Kennedy's, New York City, New York
11:00 a.m. Refreshment Break
11:30 a.m. Legislative Developments Impacting Claim Handling Impacting Bad Faith and Extra Contractual Liability

This session will analyze recent legislative developments in response to catastrophic loss claims and how it can impact bad faith and extra contractual based claims including issues that may arise in the claims handling process.

Byron Hansbro, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, Bloomington, IL
David Strauss, Strauss Massey Dinneen, LLC, New Orleans, LA
12:30 p.m. Adjourn

Property (Breakout 2)

Time (Central) Session Description
9:00 a.m. The Art and Science of the Appraisal

Learn the latest theories that policyholders are attempting and how to effectively navigate this often difficult component of a property claim. This session will also detail the retention of experts and how this can assist the insurer and counsel.

Eric Bowers, Zelle, LLP, Dallas, Texas
Brett Lochridge, Unified Building Sciences, Inc., Dallas, Texas
10:00 a.m. The Latest Developments With Business Interruption Claims

This session is designed to provide a summary of the latest developments with business interruption claims and the challenges present when trying to determine the value of these claims under a variety of circumstances.

J. Pablo Cáceres, Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig, Tampa Bay, Florida
11:00 a.m. Refreshment Break
11:30 a.m. The Multiple Considerations of Water Damage Claims

This presentation will examine the multiple coverage issues that can permeate any water loss claim including the latest developments in the law arising from recent catastrophic loss litigation.

Jamie Cooper, Martin, Disiere, Jefferson & Wisdom, LLP, San Antonio, TX
12:30 p.m. Adjourn


NEW in 2022 – 4 Additional On-Demand Programs Included With Every Seminar!

CLE Credit will be sought from every state requiring CLE hours in elimination of bias/diversity and inclusion, ethics, substance abuse/mental health and law practice management. The CLE grid will provide updated information concerning which courses have been approved by which states and for which credits. For states not requiring these special credits, general education credits will be sought.

Diversity/Elimination of Bias in the Profession

Batson v. Kentucky and its progeny were meant to eliminate bias in jury selection. But has that happened? This program will address that question and discuss issues of bias in the courtroom more broadly and will challenge viewers to recognize their own biases and to learn how those biases could affect their assessment of potential jurors, witnesses, judges, and adversaries. The program also will provide viewers with skills on how to identify the biases of potential jurors and how those biases could come into play during deliberations.

Stacy Douglas, Everett Dorey LLP, Irvine, CA
Gary Howard, Bradley, Birmingham, AL


Investigating claims and lawsuits often requires interviews with employees. Corporate in-house attorneys and their outside counsel need to be able to identify potential conflicts of interest and confidentiality issues with employees who may leave their employment and become opposing counsel’s best witness.

Kristie S. Crawford, Brown & James, Springfield, MO
Lauren Buford, Walgreen Co., Deerfield, Illinois 60015.

Mental Health & Attorney Wellness

Study after study suggests that lawyers aren’t happy. Continued unhappiness impacts performance, relationships, and physical health. That’s the bad news. The good news is that research proven interventions exist that increase happiness without requiring a radical change in circumstances. Even a slight increase in happiness has a lasting impact on both your current performance and resilience, not to mention, happier just feels better. This program will quickly, efficiently, and practically explain why happiness matters and offer tools you can use today to work, lead, and live happier.

Rebecca Morrison, Aldie VA

Law Practice Management

Law firms must operate more efficiently to ensure they can deliver high-quality services, handle more volume and maintain a profit margin in today’s climate of rate pressure and rising costs. Understanding Key Performance Indicators and law firm analytics concerning financial, operational and client service data are key to mastering law firm performance management. This presentation will address methods to collect information necessary for evaluating key areas of performance, identify tools and techniques to analyze data and generate action items and more.

Brian Kennel, PerformLaw, New Orleans, LA
Jan Sander, PerformLaw, New Orleans, LA
Sean Kennel, PerformLaw, New Orleans, LA

Hotel and Travel Information

A limited number of discounted hotel rooms have been made available at the Hyatt Regency Houston, 1200 Louisiana Street, Houston, TX 77002. Take advantage of the group rate of $209.00 Single/Double in one of two ways:

The hotel block is limited and rooms and rates are available on a first-come, first-served basis. You must make reservations by February 21, 2022 to be eligible for the hotel’s group rate. Requests for reservations made after that date are subject to room and rate availability. A small portion of your room rate offsets the costs of the seminar.

Travel Discounts: DRI is pleased to announce that discounted air fares are available on various major air carriers for DRI seminar attendees. To receive these discounts, please contact Direct Travel Ltd., DRI’s official travel provider, at 800.840.0908. If you would like to have access to the DRI online travel booking tool, you must complete a Business Travel Profile form at www.dt.com. Within 24 business hours, you will receive information on accessing the system.

CLE Information

Earn up to 9.00 hours of continuing legal education hours, including 1 hour of ethics credit from this seminar.

Insurance Coverage & Claims Institute CLE Grid (PDF)


DRI's Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute Seminar is proudly sponsored by:

AM Best
Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig
Hawkins Parnell & Young, LLP
Hurwitz & Fine P.C. Attorneys at Law Nicolaides Fink Thorpe Michaelides Sullivan LLP Skarzynski Marick
TC Teague Campbell Celebrating 75 Years
Varner & Van Volkenburg PLLC

If you would like to contact DRI about seminar sponsorship opportunities, including pricing, or to reserve a spot, please go to Advertising and Sponsorship.

DRI Cares

BEAR A Resource for CPS Kids, bear and child

DRI is honored to partner with BEAR…A Resource for CPS Kids which is the only 501(c)(3) organization working with Harris County, Texas Child Protective Services and the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services offering unique programs – that provide not only the basic needs of children recently uprooted, but also supportive services that provide comfort, dignity, and celebration of successes that propel the child toward a successful future.

For the last 24 years, BEAR has been an important advocate for the most vulnerable population in Houston…its children. This advocacy is represented through the basic necessities provided for children in BEAR rooms year-round, the uniforms distributed each fall, the Christmas gifts wrapped and delivered each winter, and in the canvas photos of adoptable children that will soon be displayed year-round throughout venues in Houston. BEAR is not able to operate these vital programs, however, without the generosity and support from our community.

If you are interested in supporting BEAR, please consider making a donation via their website today.

Event Terms

Read the Event Terms including DRI’s Cancellation and Refund Policy

In-House Counsel and Claims Executives Initiatives

Read the In-House Counsel and Claims Executives Initiatives for DRI Seminars

Contact Us

If you have any questions or concerns regarding DRI programs, please contact DRI Customer Service at 312.795.1101 or custservice@dri.org.