The National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) published an article co-authored by subrogation attorney Matthew Fink titled “Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory: When the Policyholder Recovers, but You Don’t!” in their Fall 2016 issue of The Subrogator. The article discussed three common problems insurers face when pursuing recovery via subrogation, all of which are, unfortunately, presented by the insured.
Using Tennessee’s subrogation laws as the control, Fink et al describes how to protect the subrogation claim when the insured has prejudiced an insurer’s subrogation rights by signing a release without informing the insurer. The article also discusses ways to protect the subrogation claim when the insured’s attorney seeks reductions based on the common fund doctrine and made-whole arguments. While the specifics of this article pertain only to Tennessee subrogation laws, Fink states, “many other states employ these similar theories.” (1). The main takeaway from this article, is that a subrogee’s counsel should remain present and active in the investigatory process, settlement negotiations, etc., in order to maximize their chances of eventually achieving recovery.
Matthew has years of experience in civil litigation and general subrogation mediation. A part of the Rathbone subrogation team since 2014, he has experience working for plaintiffs, defendants, and subrogees. Fink handled multi-party civil suits at one of the largest subrogation law firms in Tennessee before joining Rathbone Group, and continues to hone his craft with us as a licensed subrogation-focused attorney in Tennessee and its Eastern District Federal Courts. Read his article to learn what to do when the policyholder recovers, but you don’t!