Solo and Small Firm

The Practitioner Summer 2020, Volume 26, Issue 3

Business Interruption Cases: Fighting For Insurance Coverage When It’s Not Business As Usual

By Pratik Shah & John Gomez

PratikShah is a co-founder and lead trial lawyer for Shah D’Egidio APC located in San Diego that focuses on personal injury and bad faith litigation. Pratik and his firm have helped homeowners and business owners recover millions of dollars from their own insurance companies after they have suffered damage or loss due to fire, water, and other natural disasters.

A Yale Law graduate, John Gomez is the President and Founder of Gomez Trial Attorneys located in San Diego, California. He is a two time Trial Lawyer of the Year and an 11-time "Outstanding Trial Lawyer" awardee.

In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, hotels, gyms, restaurants, and bars are all shuttered. Casinos, sports stadiums, and event centers sit empty. Other "non-essential" businesses remain closed. By the time the United States re-opens, small businesses will have lost billions of dollars. Many of those small businesses have already filed claims with their insurers for lost profits and additional expenses under the "business interruption" provisions in their policies. Without exception, those claims have been universally denied. Many lawyers are preparing to fight the coverage battle in courts all over the United States. While the lawyer representing the insured must read each individual insurance policy, there are really three big questions in these cases. We address those below. We do not attempt here to set forth the law that defines how courts interpret insurance policies in general. Suffice it to say, all ambiguities are resolved against the insurer. Bear that principle in mind as you read the following.

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