MIAMI – Law360 reported on Rivero Mestre’s representation of Westernbank’s officers and directors in their suit with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation:
The First Circuit on Wednesday shot down AIG Insurance Co.’s attempt to escape attorneys’ fees and costs incurred by the directors and officers of Westernbank Puerto Rico in a $176 million coverage suit after the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. became the bank’s receiver in April 2010.
In a three-sentence ruling, a three-judge panel said that AIG failed to establish the First Circuit’s jurisdiction over the order finding that the insurer acted obstinately by refusing to advance the legal expenses under their director and officer insurance policies.
Westernbank’s former parent company and co-plaintiff W Holding Co. had argued that the order could not be appealed because it is an interlocutory order that is not final. The order merely states that the directors and officers were entitled to the legal fees and costs from AIG, allowing the directors and officers to submit a specific amount of fees, the company said in its motion to dismiss.
Andres Rivero of Rivero Mestre LLP, who represents the plaintiffs, told Law360 that he was pleased to see the First Circuit affirm the district court’s ruling.
“It’s really important to our clients because it will be an expensive litigation and we needed to have a decision that the insurance would cover the defense,” Rivero said. “I t was particularly important because the insured versus insured question had not been decided during this crisis.”