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Know Your Business And The Impact of Actual Notice on Additional Insureds in Illinois

(931 reviews)

Produced on May 19, 2017

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Course Information

Time 1h 1m
Difficulty Intermediate

Course Description

This course, taught by Andrew Witik, a partner in the Insurance practice at Tressler LLP, will cover the topic and application of the rule of “actual notice” under Illinois law and the significant impact it can have on additional insureds and their businesses.

Illinois follows the minority rule and does not always require an additional insured to tender a lawsuit for which it desires a defense. Under certain circumstances, the named insured’s insurance carrier may become aware or learn that an additional insured endorsed on its named insured’s liability policy has been sued in the same lawsuit as the named insured. The result of having actual notice of the lawsuit against the additional insured is that the insurer’s duty to defend is triggered. Once this occurs, under the rule of actual notice, the insurer has an affirmative duty to contact the additional insured to determine whether the additional insured wants the insurer to defend or participate in its defense.

The insurer’s knowledge of these facts, and that the allegations in the plaintiff’s complaint potentially fall within the scope of coverage under its policy, can have a profound impact on how litigation expenses and costs are paid, so businesses and their counsel must be vigilant.

Both general counsel and in-house coverage counsel must ensure that the insurer has performed a simple review and comparison of the allegations in the plaintiff’s complaint and terms of the named insured’s liability policy, so as not to be caught unawares of its obligations. In the current climate of rising litigation costs, the defense provided to the additional insured can result in significant savings of expenses that the additional insured business can pass on to an insurer other than its own and avoid a detrimental effect on its future premiums. In addition to these considerations, this course will also explore how the doctrine of estoppel may come into play against an insurer that ignores the fact that it has actual notice of a lawsuit filed against an additional insured on its policy of insurance.

Learning Objectives: 

  1. Understand the Illinois rule on actual notice and additional insureds
  2. Identify the steps general counsel must take to ensure their insurance carrier is aware of any additional insureds and its defense obligations
  3. Assess the cost-saving implications of the rule and its impact on business decisions 

Credit Information

After completing this course, Lawline will report your attendance information to {{ accredMasterState.state.name }}. Please ensure your license number is filled out in your profile to ensure timely reporting. For more information, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements page . After completing this course, {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} attorneys self-report their attendance and CLE compliance. For more information on how to report your CLE courses, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements FAQ .


Andrew Witik

Christensen Hsu Sipes LLP

Andrew has over 30 years of experience representing insurance companies, corporations, municipalities, and individuals in declaratory judgment actions, contractual disputes, bad faith claims, and appeals in state and federal courts across the United States. In addition to insurance coverage, his emphasis is on construction defect litigation matters. He has successfully litigated Illinois cases of first impression applying the business risk and false pretense exclusions. He also has experience with general liability, professional liability, commercial auto, property, business owner’s, and homeowner’s policies.

Drew has been rated an AV® Preeminent™ lawyer by Martindale-Hubbell, representing the recognition of the highest level of professional excellence by his peers. In 2018 and 2019, he was named a Leading Lawyer in Illinois in the areas of Insurance, Insurance Coverage, and Reinsurance Law.

After law school, Drew served as law clerk to the Hon. Edward J. Egan of the Illinois Appellate Court.


  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD
  • Loyola University, BA


  • Illinois
  • Wisconsin
  • United States District Courts: Central District of Illinois, Northern District of Illinois, Southern District of Illinois, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • United States Court of Appeals: Seventh Circuit

Publications and Presentations

  • “New Wave of Occurrence as to Property Damage Meets Prior Work and Breach of Contract Exclusions,” Lawline Webinar, September 12, 2019
  • “Litigating Complex Construction Defect Case When Your Client No Longer Exists," 4th Annual Midwest Construction Defect & Dispute Conference, Chicago, Illinois, May 20, 2019
  • "Construction Defect 2018 Case Law Review," Claims & Litigation Management Webinar, February 14, 2019
  • "Occurrence - Where We Have Been - Where We Are Now - Where We Are Heading," Claims & Litigation Management 2018 New York Conference, New York, New York, December 12, 2018
  • “The Impact of Selective Tender and Actual Notice on Additional Insureds in Illinois,” Lawline Webinar, June 12, 2018
  • “Additional Insureds: A Close Look at Recent Litigation Trends,” Lawline Webinar, May 22, 2018
  • “Know Your Business And The Impact of Actual Notice on Additional Insureds in Illinois,” Lawline Webinar, May 19, 2017
  • “Additional Insureds and Risk Transfer in Construction Contracts,” Lawline Webinar, March 27, 2017
  • “Arising Issues with Additional Insureds,” 3rd Annual Intermountain Construction Defect & Dispute Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah, February 3, 2017
  • “Business Owner’s Policies and Transferring Risk” NBI Webcast Seminar, September 14, 2016
  • “Arising Issues Regarding Additional Insureds, Risk Transfer in Construction Contracts and Anti-Indemnity Legislation,” 2nd Annual Midwest Construction Defect & Dispute Conference, Minneapolis, Minnesota, August 18, 2016
  • “The Texas Anti-Indemnity Act,” Premier Southwest Construction Defect & Dispute Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, April 15, 2016
  • “Emerging Issues: High-risk Insurance Coverage Litigation for Lawyers in 2015,” The Knowledge Group Webcast Seminar, October 8, 2015


Byron M.

Informative presentation

William W.

Very thorough presentation.

Sandra S.

Well presented, clear and comprehensive.

James Z.

Instructor has excellent communication skills....very interesting presentation.

Robert S.

Excellent program

Edward B.

excellent presentation. very thorough clear and succint

Catherine F.

Excellent content

holly m.

Very good presentation in clear understandable terms. The speaker has a nice conversational manner.

Robert M.

Well done presentation.

Tom H.

Very well done.

Lawrence R. F.

good lecture

Frances M.

I learned a tremendous amount. Excellent presentation.

Gerardo D.


Gary D.

The cases in the outline were helpful in following the lecture.

James B.

Brought home key points in coverage issues regarding additional insureds.

Donna W.

I rarely encounter insurance matters, but the speaker really was informative and clear.

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