Under ERISA, Communications with In-House Counsel Before a Final Claims Decision are Not Privileged and are Subject to Discovery to Show a Conflict of Interest

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The Ninth Circuit for the first time addresses whether the fiduciary exception applies to insurance companies in the ERISA context. In an ERISA case, a claimant is entitled to conduct discovery regarding communications between claims handlers and in-house counsel in an attempt to determine whether the insurer’s decision was improperly influenced by a conflict of interest.

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Published In: Insurance Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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