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First-Party Coverage

There are many valuable interests at stake in first-party property claims. These kinds of cases involve unique complexities, and insurance policies with language that often require interpreting.

Clients quickly turn to Butler when a property loss has occurred. Our team of well-versed attorneys has spearheaded first-party property matters, including boiler and machinery, builder’s risk, time element and extra contractual claims for over 40 years. Starting with our office in Tampa, Florida, our first-party property practice has grown significantly over the decades. Butler lawyers are sought after in numerous complex, multi-million dollar first-party claims, both domestically and abroad, including several where the exposure has been in excess of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Coverage experience in a spectrum of industries

  • Mining
  • Aviation
  • Education
  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturing
  • Financial Institutions
  • Power Generation and Energy
  • Stadiums
  • Hospitality
  • Real Estate
  • Builder’s Risk
  • Equipment Breakdown
  • Manufacturing Facilities
  • Commercial Buildings
  • Structures & Warehouses
  • Arson & Fire
  • Public Entities
  • Construction Sites
  • Food and Beverage
  • Catastrophic Losses
  • Residential (including Condos)
  • Warehouse Distribution Facilities

We work with you every step of the way

We have significant experience in representing and working with claims involving multiple insurers on shared and multi-tiered programs, including those involved in the London market. At the helm of every matter, we advise and counsel our clients in all phases of the claim, partnering with them to obtain satisfactory resolution in the most efficient and cost-effective manner possible.

We offer:

  • Coverage support
  • Assist in managing the claim investigation
  • Work closely with experts and consultants
  • Conduct examinations under oath
  • Assist in obtaining a resolution of the claim prior to litigation through negotiation
  • Mediation or other alternative dispute resolution processes

Representation from industry leaders and skilled attorneys

Our extensive experience in litigating cases adds significant value when predicting probable outcomes to assist in valuing the case for settlement and trying the case if necessary.

Our property lawyers are admitted to the Bar in over 11 states and have litigated property cases in twice as many states, as well as in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Butler lawyers are leaders in the property insurance industry. We have numerous partners who were Chairs of the Property Insurance Law Committee of the Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section of the American Bar Association. Our property lawyers have authored numerous articles and publications on first-party property and speak frequently in industry seminars and events.

Events, Webinars | Flood vs. Wind Claims Following Hurricane Ian Webinar

February 23, 2023 | By Matthew Lavisky

Partner Matthew Lavisky and co-presenters Ryan Jones (Traub Lieberman) and Paul McCullough (S.E.A. Ltd.) will be presenting for the FDLA on the topic of Flood…

Events | How to Calculate Depreciation – Replacement Cash Value vs. Actual Cash Value claims

January 24, 2023 | By Thomas Keller

Join Partner Thomas Keller as he presents for the WIND 2023 Conference. This presentation will take place in Caribe Royale, Orlando, FL on January 24,…

Events | Managing the Complexities of Large Excess and Surplus Losses

January 24, 2023 | By William (Bill) Lewis

Join Partner William Lewis and co-presenters Jonathan Camarro (RSUI), Evelyn M. Merchant (Berk, Merchant & Sims, PLC), Alan Palma (Palma Legal Services, P.A.), and Michael…

Events | Intricacies of Commercial Policies and Claims

January 24, 2023 | By William Collum

Join Partner William Collum and co-presenters Donna DeVaney Stockham (Stockham Law Group), Chris Glenn (Beazley USA), Rick Tutwiler (Tutwiler & Assoc. Public Adjusters), and Kristine…

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Events | Property Case Law Update 2023

January 26, 2023 | By K. Clark Schirle, Richard Gable Jr., Jamie Combee Novaes

Join Partner Clark Schirle, Rich Gable and Jamie Combee Novaes as they present for the Loss Executives Association (LEA) 2023 Annual Meeting on January 26,…

Blog Posts | New Florida Law Allows Carriers to Serve Joint Offers and Proposals

Dec 30, 2022 | By Shaheen Nouri

On December 16, 2022, Florida’s Governor signed Senate Bill 2A into law, bringing a number of changes to Florida’s insurance litigation landscape. These reforms include…

News, Webinars | Major Florida Property Insurance Reform

December 21, 2022 | By Thomas Keller, Matthew Lavisky

Partners, Thomas Keller and Matthew Lavisky will address the major changes contained in Senate Bill 2A. The focus will be on adjusting claims and the…

Blog Posts | In South Carolina, Insurers Owe Fees for Losing a First Party DJ? – It’s Un-American!

Dec 06, 2022 | By T. Nicholas Goanos

Bottom Line, Up-Front A recent South Carolina federal district court ruling interprets South Carolina law in a new and potentially dangerous way – by allowing…

Blog Posts | Profiting from a Peril: Business Interruption Valuation During Economic Instability

Nov 30, 2022 | By J. Pablo Cáceres

Introduction The pandemic and political turmoil are causing widespread and long-term economic volatility after many years of positive trends. But covered commercial property losses continue,…

News | Fixing Florida’s Litigation Tsunami

December 6, 2022 | By Thomas Keller

Join Partner Thomas Keller and co-presenters Bob Ritchie (American Integrity Insurance Company), Will Arnold (American Integrity Insurance Company), John Huff (Association of Bermuda Insurers and…

Events | Make Sure You Are Covered: Good Faith Claims Handling and Common Issues That are Encountered Handling Property Claims

November 9, 2022 | By Michael Montgomery

Join Partner Michael Montgomery and co-presenters Stephen A. Melendi (Tollefson, Bradley, Mitchell & Melendi) and Venessa Perkins (PURE) as they present for the FDCC 2022…

Events | Causes of Loss From Cover to Cover (Part II)

November 9, 2022 | By Richard Gable Jr.

Join Partner Richard Gable, Jr. and co-presenter Meredith Murphy (FM Global) as they present for the FDCC 2022 Property Insurance Boot Camp on November 9,…

Events, Webinars | Hurricane Ian Webinar Series Episode 5 – Profiting From A Peril – Business Interruption Valuation During Economic Instability

November 30, 2022 | By J. Pablo Cáceres, Hudson Jones

Our latest webinar series will inform you on issues that may arise during adjustment of Hurricane Ian claims. In the fifth part of this series,…

Events | Too Little, Too Late: Late Notice Claims + Hurricanes

November 3, 2022 | By Jason Seitz

Join partner Jason Seitz as he presents with Alan Mullenix (PE, Envista Forensics) and Charles Beshara (Executive General Adjuster, Beshara and Associates) for the 2022…

Blog Posts | Nuanced Aspects of Hurricane Claims: Civil Authority, Ordinance or Law, and Mobile Home Claims

Oct 24, 2022 | By Timothy Engelbrecht, William Collum

The adjustment of hurricane claims sometimes involve discrete issues regarding either special coverages under insurance policies or different types of structures governed by a patchwork…

Events, Webinars | Hurricane Ian Webinar Series Episode 3 – Civil Authority, Ordinance or Law, and Mobile Homes

October 25, 2022 | By Timothy Engelbrecht, William Collum

Our latest webinar series will inform you on issues that may arise during adjustment of Hurricane Ian claims. In the third part of this series,…

Events | Hurricane Ian Webinar Series Episode 2 – Litigating Tile Roof Claims

October 21, 2022 | By Sarah Burke, D. Grayson Kelly

Our latest webinar series will inform you on issues that may arise during adjustment of Hurricane Ian claims. In the second part of this series,…

Blog Posts | What to Expect When You Are Adjusting: A Primer for Hurricane Ian Property Claims

Oct 10, 2022 | By Thomas Keller, Dericka Burke

The last week of September, 2022, the State of Florida braced for what was categorized to be one of the worst storms to make landfall…

Webinars | Hurricane Ian Webinar Series Episode 1 – What to Expect When You Are Adjusting

Oct 03, 2022 | By Thomas Keller, Dericka Burke

Our latest webinar series will inform you on issues that may arise during adjustment of Hurricane Ian claims. In the first part of this series,…

Blog Posts | To Remand or Not to Remand, That Is the Question

Sep 26, 2022 | By Barry Burkett, J. Blake Hunter

Generally, a case is not removable to federal court “more than one year after commencement of [an] action.” However, a defendant may remove a case…

Blog Posts | Bracing for Fiona – A pre and post analysis of hurricane risk in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean

Sep 21, 2022 | By Thais Passerieu

Five years after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico braced again as Tropical Storm Fiona, expected to become a Hurricane by landfall, made its way to the…

News, Spotlights | Attorney Spotlights | Pablo Cáceres

September 9, 2022 | By J. Pablo Cáceres

Pablo Cáceres is a Partner at the firm who primarily litigates complex First and Third-Party Coverage matters in state and federal courts, including appeals. He…

Blog Posts | Trial Lawyers, Don’t Lose Your Appeal

Sep 06, 2022 | By Mihaela Cabulea

Every appellate attorney’s dream is a well-developed record on appeal without any unpreserved errors. But that is not always possible. The recent amendment to Florida…

Podcasts | Batten Down The Hatches: Issues to Consider With Florida’s 2022 Storm Season Upon Us

Jun 28, 2022 | By T. Wiley Hodges, David Maldoff

This podcast with Butler attorneys David Maldoff and Wiley Hodges will touch on and discuss issues to consider when storm-related claims are reported. The podcast…

Blog Posts | Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig – Are Pennsylvania Courts Misconstruing the Residency Requirement?

Jun 22, 2022 | By Adam Masef

Residency has long been the touchstone of insurability when it comes to homeowners insurance. Courts applying Pennsylvania law have held that residency is a condition…

Blog Posts | Seventh Circuit Affirms Judgment on the Pleadings for Insurer in Covid-19 Business Interruption Claim by Shopping Mall Food Court Restaurant

Jun 17, 2022 | By K. Clark Schirle, Jonathan Barger

Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig LLP attorneys Clark Schirle and Jon Barger obtained a victory for their client in the case of Melcorp, Inc. v. West…

News | Butler Proudly Sponsors FDLA

June 15, 2022

Butler is proud to be a sponsor for the FDLA 2022 Florida Liability Claims Conference from June 15-17, 2022 at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. To learn…

Blog Posts | What You Need to Know About Recent Changes to Florida Property Insurance Law Affecting Admitted and Surplus Lines Insurers

May 31, 2022 | By William Collum

Having been called back to the capitol by Florida’s governor for a special session to address issues within the property insurance market, the Florida Legislature…

Blog Posts | Dial v. Calusa Palms Master Association, Inc. – Florida Supreme Court Confirms Only Amounts Actually Paid By Medicare Are Admissible As Evidence Of Past Medical Expenses

May 13, 2022 | By Barry Burkett, William Linero Jr.

On April 28, 2022, the Florida Supreme Court issued its decision in Dial v. Calusa Palms Master Association, Inc., which addressed the question:   DOES THE…

Events | Diversity Jurisdiction: Remove Your Case from State to Federal Court, and Keep It There

June 17, 2022 | By Hudson Jones

Join Partner Hudson Jones and Associate Christian Gonzalez-Rivera as they present for the 2022 FDLA Florida Liability Claims Conference at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn on June…

Events | Litigating Tile Roof Claims

June 16, 2022 | By Jamie Combee Novaes, D. Grayson Kelly

Join Senior Associates Jamie Combee Novaes and D. Grayson Kelly along with co-presenter Paul R. Marsenison as they present for the FDLA 2022 Florida Liability…

News | Partners Clark Schirle and Jonathan Barger Admitted to Texas Bar

Mar 31, 2022 | By K. Clark Schirle, Jonathan Barger

Partners Clark Schirle and Jon Barger are newly admitted to the Texas Bar. They are assisting clients with first-party property claim coverage issues and litigation in Texas. Clark and Jon are…

Blog Posts | The Water Damage Endorsement Does Not Include “Tear Out” Cost in Cast Iron Pipe Claims

Mar 07, 2022 | By Brian Hohman

Florida is replete with houses that contain cast iron pipes. After several years, those pipes deteriorate to the point that water leaks out, causing a…

Blog Posts | Florida First DCA Reverses $28.6 Million Judgment and Emphasizes that Alleged Violations of the Florida “Dram Shop” Act are Negligence Actions

Feb 23, 2022 | By Barry Burkett

The effects of alcohol-impaired driving as it concerns life and limb are well-documented. Indeed, more often than not, the policy limits for the responsible party’s…

Spotlights | Attorney Spotlights | Michael Wolfer

Feb 23, 2022 | By Michael Wolfer

Butler is proud to highlight the diversity among our team of attorneys. Many come from different backgrounds and walks of life. These experiences both professionally…

Events | The Latest Developments With Business Interruption Claims

March 23, 2022 | By J. Pablo Cáceres

Join Partner Pablo Cáceres as he presents at the 2022 Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute on March 23, 2022. This session is designed to provide…

News | New Property Insurance Litigator’s Handbook (3rd Edition)

Feb 08, 2022 | By William (Bill) Lewis, Sarah Burke, Richard Gable Jr.

Butler congratulates its Partners on the release of the 3rd Edition of the ABA’s Property Insurance Litigator’s Handbook. This book has contributions from Partners SARAH…

Events | Climbing the Emotion/Logic Mountain: Overcoming Barriers Towards Claim Resolution

January 25, 2022 | By William Collum

Join Partner William Collum and co-panelists Craig Maihiot (Florida Family Insurance), Christopher Scarlett (Phoenix Claims Consulting) and Donna Stockham (Stockham Law Group, P.A) as they…

Blog Posts | Fifth Circuit Seeks Guidance From The Texas Supreme Court On When The Concurrent Cause Doctrine Applies

Oct 12, 2021 | By K. Clark Schirle

Hail damage is so typical in Texas that Chapter 542A of the Texas Insurance Code is known as the “Hail Bill.” Texas follows the concurrent…

Events | Marketing in the New Normal

September 24, 2021 | By Matthew Lavisky

Join Partner Matthew Lavisky and co-presenters Margaret Grisdela (Legal Expert Connections, Inc.) and Frank Ramos (Clarke Silverglate, PA) as they present for the 2021 Law…

Blog Posts | Insurer Doesn’t “Waive” Goodbye to Coverage Defenses by Making a Payment

Sep 03, 2021 | By Jamie Combee Novaes

Does an insurer “open coverage” or “acknowledge coverage” for a claim by making a payment? No, it doesn’t. The Third DCA confirmed: an insurer does…

Events | International Commercial Excess Liability Programs

October 27, 2021 | By Jonathan Barger

Join Partner Jonathan Barger as he presents for the 2021 PLRB Large Loss Conference on October 27-29, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. The presentation will cover…

News | Butler Proudly Sponsors the 2021 Florida Insurance Network Symposium

August 12, 2021

Butler is proud to be a sponsor for the FDLA 2021 Florida Insurance Network Symposium (FINS). This conference will provide high quality, timely presentations in…

Blog Posts, News | 8th Circuit Rules In Favor of Insurer in Covid-19 Business Interruption

July 6, 2021 | By Jonathan Barger

On July 2, 2021, in the case of Oral Surgeons, P.C. v. Cincinnati Ins. Co., No. 20-3211, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit…

Events | Civil Authority Coverage

July 6, 2021 | By K. Clark Schirle

Partner Clark Schirle presented “Civil Authority Coverage” for the PLRB Claims Conference Webinar Series on July 6, 2021. Mr. Schirle discussed civil authority coverage elements,…

Blog Posts | South Carolina Permits Depreciation of Labor When Calculating ACV

May 26, 2021 | By Jonathan Barger, T. Nicholas Goanos

  The issue of whether labor can be depreciated when a property policy does not define the term “actual cash value” (“ACV”) has been resolved…

Blog Posts | Recent Changes in Florida’s Property Insurance Law for Admitted and Surplus Lines Insurers: The Basics of What You Need to Know

May 04, 2021 | By William Collum

Hours before the close of Florida’s 2021 annual legislative session, the Florida Legislature passed SB 76, legislating wide changes to the handling and litigation of…


May 03, 2021 | By J. Blake Hunter

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage was first enacted in Florida in 1971.  PIP is also known as no-fault insurance, and it allows drivers and passengers…

Blog Posts | Critical Analysis in the Claims Handling Process – One or Multiple Occurrences?

Apr 30, 2021 | By J. Blake Hunter

An issue that often arises when an insurer is determining whether a policy provides coverage for bodily injury or property damage under a liability policy…

Events | Covid Claim – Where we Are and Where We are Going

Apr 12, 2021 | By John Garaffa

Partner John Garaffa presented on a panel at the American Bar Association (“ABA”) Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section’s Hot Topics in the World of…

First-Party Coverage