Scott Godes - Dickstein Shapiro LLP

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Contact Information

Scott Godes

Dickstein Shapiro LLP

1825 I Street, NW

Washington, DC 20006

Practice Areas
  • Civil Litigation
  • Insurance
  • Appellate
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Scott Godes, a lawyer with Dickstein Shapiro LLP, focuses on representing corporate policyholders in insurance coverage disputes. He is an experienced trial lawyer who has extensive experience in litigating complex insurance coverage disputes including class actions, in state, federal, bankruptcy, and appellate courts, as well as in commercial arbitrations.


AREAS OF CONCENTRATION



Mr. Godes has represented a variety of clients seeking to obtain insurance coverage from their insurance companies. He received a decisive victory as lead counsel in a landmark four-month asbestos-related insurance coverage class action trial. In that case, the policyholder’s insurance companies asserted that they had paid out their aggregate limits for all of the policyholder’s asbestos-related claims, and therefore, owed no additional coverage. The Supreme Court of New York disagreed with the insurance companies, ruling decisively against the primary and “wrap up” insurers, finding that there was premises/operations (“non-products”) coverage for the claims under the policies. That case was the first asbestos non-products coverage case resolved favorably against the insurers after a full trial on the merits. The case also favorably resolved a number of other critical issues, including notice, number of occurrences, and the statute of limitations.


Mr. Godes also has represented policyholders in declaratory judgment insurance coverage actions, insurance-related bankruptcies and adversary actions, insurer rehabilitation actions, and commercial arbitrations. He has litigated and advised clients regarding insurance coverage for computer data, hardware, and software claims; mass tort liabilities; potential director and officer claims; asbestos claims; environmental property damage; flood claims; and class actions. He also has been instrumental in settling more than $300 million in insurance coverage claims on behalf of corporate policyholders.


In addition to his insurance coverage experience, Mr. Godes has litigated complex commercial and government contract disputes and business-related torts. He has represented clients before state and federal courts, in administrative proceedings, and in commercial arbitrations.


Mr. Godes has also served as in-house counsel to an Internet company.


PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND



From April 1997 to February 2000, Mr. Godes worked as an associate, summer associate, and law clerk at the law firm DLA Piper, where he focused on government contracts and related litigation. From February 2000 to November 2001, he worked at FindLaw, Inc., where, as the Legal Compliance Manager and Director of Content, he handled legal issues for one of the company’s divisions and helped build the portal through its buyout by Thomson Corporation.


Between November 2001 and July 2006, Mr. Godes was an associate at Gilbert Heintz & Randolph LLP, where he was the senior associate on several complex insurance coverage matters.


PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES



Mr. Godes is a member of the Bars of the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania (inactive).


PUBLICATIONS


  • August 10, 2007, N.Y. Asbestos Claims Not Subject to Aggregate Limits, Product Liability Law360
  • June 14, 2007, New York Court Finds That Aggregate Limits Do Not Apply to Asbestos Installation Claims, LexisNexis Mealey's Litigation Report - Insurance
  • Spring 2006, Insurance Coverage for Asbestos Claims: Laying Out a Case on Behalf of Insulation Contractors, Association of Trial Lawyers of America, Insurance Law, Volume 12, No. 3
  • September 1997, Government Contracting on the Internet: Abandoning FACNET as the Government’s Network for Electronic Commerce, Public Contract Law Journal, Volume 26, No. 4


  • EDUCATION



    Mr. Godes received his B.A., cum laude, from Middlebury College (1994), and his J.D., with honors, from The George Washington University Law School (1998). While in law school, he served as the Managing Editor for the Public Contract Law Journal and was a member of the Moot Court Board.

    Professional
     
    Undergraduate: Middlebury College
    Law School: George Washington University
    Admitted to Bar: 1998
    Practice Areas: Business > Commercial Litigation
    Personal > Insurance
    Personal > Civil Litigation
    Personal > Appellate
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