- Business Disputes and Commercial Litigation
- Cyber Risk and Losses
- Insurance Coverage
Bar and Court Admissions
- State Courts: Minnesota and New York
- U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals: Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Circuits
- U.S. District Court: District of Minnesota, Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, Northern District of Illinois, Northern District of California, Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas, District of Colorado, District of Nebraska, and Eastern District of Michigan
- William Mitchell College of Law, J.D., 1987
- Montana State University, BA, 1982
Thomas B. Caswell, III
Tom has successfully represented many clients in a variety of industries during his 25-plus years handling complex litigation throughout the United States and internationally.
Tom's particularly strong expertise in insurance coverage litigation is focused on first party property, liability, and cyber coverage, construction defect claims, bad faith, time element, and boiler & machinery claims. While Tom's insurance practice is predominantly defense oriented, he appears at least as often as plaintiff's counsel in other matters - - having made substantial recoveries for his clients following their losses arising out of fires, explosions and mechanical failures in refineries, power plants, foundries, hotels, and large manufacturing facilities.
Tom's practice also includes anti-trust matters, privacy and data theft, software licensing disputes, as well as general commercial litigation.
Although Tom strives to reach a settlement or other resolution for his clients short of trial, that is not always possible. It is at that point when Tom's considerable jury trial experience is truly appreciated by his clients.
Prevailing lead counsel in multiple precedent setting matters, including:
Weyerhaeuser Co. v. Thermogas Co., 620 N.W.2d 819 (Iowa 2000) (involving a major fire at a corrugated container plant, cited by over 100 courts and legal publications for its holdings on strict liability, comparative fault, jury instructions and res ipsa loquitur); University of Minnesota v. Chief Industries, 106 F.3d 1409 (8th Cir. 1997) (fire at a university research facility, cited for its holdings on the economic loss doctrine and breach of warranty).
George's Inc. v. Allianz Global Risks US Insurance Co., 596 F.3d 989 (8th Cir. 2010) (W.D. Arkansas) (extra-expense coverage under property policy must result from actual increased monetary expenditure, and not merely increased per-unit production costs).
Allianz Ins. Co. v. Lexington Ins. Co., 179 S.W.3d 478 (Mo.App.E.D. 2005) (number of occurrences under property policy).
Hall v. Associated Int'l Ins. Co., 2012 WL 3570729 (10th Cir. 2012) (forced-placed homeowner's coverage is for benefit of lender).
Mies Equipment, Inc. v. NCI Building Systems, 167 F. Supp. 2d 1077 (D. Minn. 2005) (breach of contact, fraudulent misrepresentation and negligent performance claims arising out of building sale and construction).
Articles & Presentations
"Personally Identifiable Information: Employer Risks & Responsibilities," Zelle webinar, July 16, 2015, co-presenter
"Looking At Angles Of Liability After A Cyberattack," Insurance Law360 and Employment Law360, January 28, 2015, co-author
"2014 Cyber Symposium, Data Breach: Protection and Resiliency," Zelle and Secure Digital Solutions Seminar, November 6, 2014, co-presenter
“FTC Taking Action on Cyber Security,” Risk & Insurance magazine, April 25, 2014, quoted regarding the FTC becoming more active in pursuing enforcement actions against organizations that do not sufficiently secure data, and how those actions may drive more companies to the cyber insurance market.
"2014 May Be Cyber Insurance's Most Popular Year Yet," Insurance Law360, March 21, 2014, author
"Cyber Costs & Losses: Coming to a Computer Near You," Zelle Seminar, February 27, 2014, co-presenter
"Cyber Risk Insurance May Cost More Than You Think," American Bar Association Property Insurance Law Committee Quarterly Report, Fall 2013, author
“For Small Business Owners, Cybersecurity Is Not a Question of "If" But 'When...," JD Supra, May 31, 2013, co-contributor
“Corruption Currents: From Zetas Convictions to Berlusconi Bribery Trial,” The Wall Street Journal, May 10, 2013, in which "Cyber Risk Insurance May Cost More Than You Think" article of May 8, 2013 is referenced
"A Super Guide to Superstorm Sandy: Key Adjustment, Coverage and Factual Issues," Zelle Webinar, April 19, 2013, co-presenter
"The Brave New World of Cyber Risks," Emerging Issues in Property Insurance, Chicago, IL, March 28, 2013, co-presenter
"What To Know About Obtaining Civil Authority Coverage," Insurance Law360, January 23, 2013, co-author
"Lessons From Past Give Guidance To Sandy-Related Claims," Insurance Law360, January 15, 2013, co-author
"Big Or Small, Cos. Need Insurance Against Data Breaches," Insurance Law360, August 22, 2012, co-author
"An Increase In A Manufacturing Insured’s Per Unit Allocation Of Fixed Costs Does Not Constitute A Covered Extra Expense," TIPS Property Insurance Law Committee Newsletter, Fall 2010, author
"Excess Scheduled Limit of Liability Endorsement Precludes Recovery From a Follow Form Excess Property Insurer Despite Primary Insurer's Payment on a Blanket Basis," Excess, Surplus Lines and Reinsurance ABA Committee Newsletter, Spring 2010, author
- American Bar Association; Sections on Litigation; Excess, Surplus Lines, Reinsurance
- Minnesota State Bar Association
- New York State Bar Association
- Hennepin County Bar Association
- International Association of Privacy Professionals
- Illinois Supreme Court Declines to Review Decision of Appellate Court on Interpretation of Corrosion and Deterioration Exclusions Favorable to Insurers
- Four Zelle Hofmann Attorneys Admitted to New York State Bar
- Extra Expense Coverage Does Not Apply To Increased Cost Per Pound
- Northern District of Illinois Prevents Strained Reading of Excess Scheduled Limit of Liability Endorsement