Monique M. Fuentes provides advice to insurance clients regarding coverage and claims-handling issues implicating all types of insurance, including primary and excess employment practices liability, sexual molestation, health care management, private equity directors & officers, and professional liability policies.
She is seasoned with respect to negotiating complex, often high-dollar, settlements in various alternative dispute forums, including mediations and court sponsored settlement conference.
Monique also represents carriers in connection with coverage and bad faith litigation throughout the country, at both the state and appellate level. In addition, Monique assesses claim trends, as well as the application of Policy wording to active claims, and uses this information to provide Policy and Policy Application wording advice to her insurance clients.
Prior to focusing her practice primarily on representing insurers, Monique also litigated commercial matters, including employment, breach of contract, real estate, licensing, fraud, trademark infringement, and professional liability in federal and state court.
Currently, Monique is able to bring her commercial litigation perspective to her insurance practice and provides insurers with effective and creative approaches with respect to defending and resolving claims.
Additionally, Monique has handled pro bono matters with the ACLU, the Orange County Public Law Center, the Alliance for Children’s Rights and Kids in Need of Defense.
Representative Matters :
- Defeated insured’s motion for declaratory judgment, wherein Wisconsin trial court held that insurer is not required to “drop down” and provide coverage within insolvent insured’s retention.
- Obtained summary judgment and case dismissal in a complex coverage litigation matter in the Northern District of California.
- Obtained summary judgment in coverage/bad faith lawsuit where court enforced the policy’s pending and prior litigation exclusion.
- Represented nationally-recognized company that provides vehicle history reports in connection with several contractual disputes resulting in favorable outcomes.
- Represented surf ware trademark owner of Rusty brand in a dispute over the termination of a worldwide License Agreement and achieved return of license.
- Achieved favorable outcome for sales industry veteran alleging breach of contract against competitor company who induced him to leave his long-time employer.
- Advise clients regarding interrelated claims issues, including impact of claims-made-and-reporting provisions on such interrelated claims.
- Advise clients with respect to settlement obligations of both carrier and insured, including duty to settle, consent issues, policy limit settlement offers and “hammer” clauses.
Professional and Community Involvement :
- Southern California Professional Liability Underwriting Society Past-Chair/Advisor (2017-2018)
- Past Chair/Advisor, Southern California Professional Liability Underwriting Society (2017-2018)
- Member, American Bar Association
- University of Southern California Gould School of Law, J.D., 1999, Member, Hale Moot Court Honors Program
- California Polytechnic University, B.A., summa cum laude, 1996
BAR ADMISSIONS : California, District of Columbia
COURT ADMISSIONS :
- U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Rate : $$$