US and international law firm Clyde & Co has announced the opening of an office in Los Angeles, which formalizes the firm's presence there following partner Julie Hawkinson's move to the city. As part of the opening, Clyde & Co has hired Jim Koelzer from Robins Kaplan, who brings considerable expertise in representing domestic and international insurers in connection with complex claims and coverage litigation.
The opening enables the firm to expand the range of services it offers to a growing Los Angeles client base. It also complements the firm's existing presence in California and makes it easier for other US and international partners to support Los Angeles based clients and litigation.
The new office will initially consist of two partners, an of counsel, a senior associate and an associate based there full time, serving the insurance and aviation sectors across insurance coverage and litigation defense work.
Bill Casey, Partner and Chair of the US Board at Clyde & Co, says:
"We've long operated in Los Angeles, but now is the right time to formalize our presence there. As a large and vibrant commercial center and hub for insurance litigation and aviation, our clients are increasingly looking for legal advice in the city. A permanent on-the-ground presence will help us deliver the best service to our clients and act as a platform to help recruit the finest legal and insurance talent in southern California and beyond."
The two partner office will initially be made up of:
- Julie Hawkinson, who was part of the founding team of lawyers in Clyde & Co's San Francisco office in 2008 and practices insurance coverage and defense work, representing domestic and international insurers on claims made under policies including, technology, media and cyber liability, intellectual property infringement liability, professional liability and directors' and officers' liability.
- Jim Koelzer, who joins from Robins Kaplan and works for insurers on complex insurance coverage issues and disputes, focused on professional liability and energy liability policies, construction defect wrap programs, facultative reinsurance, and first party property policies, as well as the defense of bad faith litigation.
Marie L. Roehm also joins the firm from Robins Kaplan as Of Counsel, along with Aaron J. Sussman, who joins as an associate. Marie has 35 years of experience with insurance coverage and claims handling issues, representing insurers in California and nationally.
Clyde & Co Senior Associate Natasha Mikha will also be located in the office. She focuses on aviation and aerospace liability, working alongside San Francisco-based aviation partner Kevin Sutherland.
Julie Hawkinson comments: "In addition to its well-known prowess in the creative industries, LA also has a burgeoning technology sector based around Silicon Beach, which is leading to a growing volume of technology related activity for our insurance clients. We look forward to growing our client base in the city by having a permanent base there."
This expansion is the latest growth for Clyde & Co in the US over the last 12 months following Miami in July 2016, and Washington, DC and Chicago in January 2017. The firm now has nine offices and nearly 50 partners and 200 legal professionals nationally in offices including San Francisco, where it has been since 2008, Long Beach, Atlanta, New York City and New Jersey.