Joe is an advisor to, and advocate for, insurance carriers on coverage-related matters. He has specialized experience in a wide range of liability, property, and bad faith coverage issues and is routinely enlisted by his clients to handle their most complex disputes.

Biography

From our New Orleans office, Joseph focuses on several insurance coverage practice areas including environmental and toxic tort liability coverage, construction defect liability coverage, and oil-and-gas liability coverage.

Joseph’s practice is devoted to representing insurance companies in coverage disputes and property claims. He is routinely enlisted by clients to handle large, complex insurance coverage matters of all kinds, including general liability claims, public sector claims, oil-and-gas claims, first-party property claims and bad faith claims. Many of his matters have involved multi-million dollar claims in the commercial setting, and have included individual claims of more than $300 million; however, he has substantial experience with smaller liability and property claims as well. 

Joseph has successfully handled more than 200 coverage actions in state and federal courts in Louisiana and other states in the South. He has argued before state and federal courts in Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, and Tennessee, and before Louisiana state appellate courts and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

Joseph has been with Lugenbuhl since 2000, and has been a shareholder of the firm since 2005. Prior to joining Lugenbuhl, Joseph served from 1996 to 2000 as an associate independent counsel in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Washington, D.C., where he assisted with several prosecutions and appeals, including arguing a case of first impression before the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. During law school, he served as a law clerk for two years with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

Representative Cases

  • Preau v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 645 F.3d 293 (5th Cir. 2011) (dispute as to whether damages awarded against insured fell within insuring agreement of general liability policy) (argued)
  • Trade-Winds Environmental Restoration, Inc. v. Stewart Development, LLC, 409 Fed. Appx. 805 (5th Cir. 2011) (contractor dispute arising out of property claim) (decided on briefs)
  • La. Stadium & Exposition District v. BFS Diversified Products, LLC, 49 So.3d 49 (La. App. 4 Cir. 2010) (duty to defend dispute concerning professional services-exclusion) (argued)
  • Carrier v. La. Pigment Co., LP, 846 So.2d 803 (La. App. 3 Cir. 2003) (dispute as to priority of coverages between property owner’s general liability insurer and contractor’s contractual indemnity insurer)

Publications

  • “Surplus Lines Insurance. Understanding and Representing a Growing Industry,” The Insurance Coverage Law Bulletin, July 2003.
  • “Unique Rules for Defending Surplus Carriers,” The Insurance Coverage Law Bulletin, August 2003.