“Good faith is core to any legal doctrine. Pertinent to our practice, most of us understand that the general rule is that estoppel cannot create coverage where none existed in the first place,” writes Joanna M. Roberto, a partner in Goldberg Segalla’s Global Insurance Services Practice Group.
“That said, the purpose of estoppel is to preserve rights previously acquired but not to create new ones. … Yet, estoppel has so many tentacles and can take many forms.”
Here in this article authored for Covered Events, the newsletter of DRI’s Insurance Law Committee, Joanna examines the application of estoppel, what it is (and what it is not), the ramifications of estoppel when it is found to apply, and how properly reserving their rights to later contest or deny coverage can help insurers avoid the estoppel that arises from their conduct in defending insureds.