Bruce Celebrezze has been practicing in the field of insurance law for virtually his entire legal career. As one of the country’s leading insurance industry litigators, he has represented a wide variety of international, national and regional insurers. In addition, Bruce is widely published as a leading authority in the field.
Bruce is exceptionally well regarded by his peers and the wider market, with a national practice that focuses on complex general liability, including personal and advertising injury, first-party property, excess and specialty lines. He also spends a substantial portion of his practice handling commercial disputes for insurers.
Bruce has received many honors and recognitions for his insurance work and excellence. He served as President of the prestigious American College of Coverage Counsel. Bruce has been recognized by the preeminent legal directory Chambers USA as a leader in insurance with a Band 1 ranking. His peers describe him as "extremely knowledgeable, capable and commercially astute" and as an attorney who "would be on any insurer’s list." Other client quotes in past Chambers rankings include, "he is incredibly responsive, as smart as they come and exceptionally skilled in this area of the law", "a very hard-working, thoughtful, 'never say die' kind of guy", "an incredible lawyer" who is "incredibly smart" and "very self-aware."
Bruce is also recognized as "a great trial lawyer" who is "well known in the industry" for his insurance litigation. Bruce combines "good instincts with a real understanding of insurer and policyholder concerns."
Bruce has received numerous acknowledgements by esteemed legal publications, and was recently recognized by Legal 500 for the category "Insurance: Advice to Insurers." He has also been recognized by Benchmark Litigation as a “California Litigation Star” and "Local Litigation Star." Bruce is nominated by Who's Who Legal as a "Thought Leader – Insurance & Reinsurance," (2019-current). Bruce has also been recognized by Best Lawyers in America, Insurance Law (2010-2021), and Who’s Who Legal: Insurance & Reinsurance (2014-2020).
US District Courts for the Central, Eastern, Northern and Southern Districts of California
US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
US District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan
US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
J.D., University of Michigan Law School, 1979
A.B., with high honors, University of Notre Dame, 1976
American College of Coverage Counsel (ACCC)
Former Board of Regents and Executive Committee, former President
Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC)
Foundation Board of Directors
Former Senior Director
Former Executive Committee
Former Litigation Management College Graduate Program, Dean
Insurance Coverage Section, former Chair
Defense Research Institute
St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio
President’s Visiting Committee, Chair
Mechanics’ Institute in San Francisco
Board of Trustees, 2000-2016
City and County of San Francisco
Civil grand jury member, 1996-1997
Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s, London, et al., v. ConAgra Grocery Products Company. The San Francisco Superior Court, relying on California Insurance Code § 533, ruled that the insurers were not liable to pay a nine figure judgment against the policyholder for willful promotion of lead paint products with actual knowledge of their hazards.
Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. KLA-Tencor Corporation. The California Court of Appeal, in a reported opinion, affirmed summary judgment finding no duty to defend under Coverage B of commercial general liability policy for underlying Walker Process antitrust claim pending in federal district court in Texas and Federal Circuit.
Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. KFx Medical Corporation. The Court of Appeals affirmed district court finding no duty to defend underlying patent claims under general liability insurance policy, relying on language in insuring agreement and intellectual property exclusion.
Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. Federal Recovery Services, Inc. The court found no duty to defend claim under errors and omissions policy for intentional refusal to return data.
ReadyLink Healthcare, Inc. v. State Compensation Insurance Fund. Issue preclusion barred an employer’s challenge to a California state agency’s calculation of workers’ compensation premium, despite allegation of federal preemption.
Tria Beauty, Inc. v. National Fire Insurance Company of Hartford. The court found no duty to defend underlying claims for false advertising, unfair competition, and trademark infringement under general liability insurance policy.
City of Evansville v. U.S. Fidelity and Guar. Co. Appellate court ruled that municipality’s excess layer general liability policies were not triggered when action sought to prevent future pollution rather than remediate past pollution.
The Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. Computer Sciences Corporation. Court of Appeal found no duty to defend underlying class action litigation regarding use of “Colossus” software program to evaluate bodily injury claims resulting in uninsured motorists and underinsured motorists claims.
Chair, ACCEC Insurance Law Symposium, Ann Arbor, Michigan, October 2017
Presenter, “War and Peace (The Abridged Version): Application of the War and Terrorism Exclusions,” American College of Coverage & Extracontractual Counsel Annual Meeting, Chicago, llinois, May 2017
Presenter, “The Inherent Difficulties in Interpreting the Application of the War Exclusion,” Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel, Coverage Masters, Charlevoix, Quebec, Canada, July 2016
Presenter, “Coverage B: Personal Injury and Advertising Injury Liability Trends,” DRI Insurance Coverage and Claims Institute, Chicago, Illinois, April 2016
Presenter, “Duty to Defend: California Trends,” Client meeting, Hartford, Connecticut, February 2015
Presenter, “Issues Regarding Additional Insured’s and Claims By Insurers,” Client meeting, Los Angeles, California, September 2014
Presenter, “Defective Construction Claims: Where Breach of Warranty and Covered Occurrences Merge or Divide,” American College of Extracontractual Counsel 2014 Insurance Law Symposium, March 2014
Presenter, “Hot Topics in Coverage and Bad Faith Litigation,” Client meeting, June 2014
Lecturer, Litigation Management College Graduate Program, Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, 2010-2014