Christopher M. Popecki helps clients navigate complex insurance recovery and commercial litigation matters. Chris has been a major contributor in high-stakes trials and appeals seeking defense and indemnity coverage for mass tort claims under recent and historic general liability policies. He has extensively briefed pivotal issues that corporate policyholders and their insurers have frequently litigated to state and federal appellate courts, including key long-tail liability coverage questions, insurer anti-assignment and anti-stacking defenses, and business interruption matters.
A well-rounded litigator with experience representing both plaintiffs and defendants, Chris has helped manage large and small teams to successful results in a diverse array of matters reaching commercial and trade secret litigation, regulatory inquiries, and government enforcement actions. He has also advised clients and litigated novel issues regarding the establishment and use of tax-efficient Section 468B qualified settlement funds to facilitate the resolution of insurance disputes and marshal assets to pay for underlying tort claims.
During law school, Chris represented victims of human trafficking and those in need of civil litigation assistance. He has since maintained a robust pro bono practice touching on asylum and immigration law, federal class action litigation, and insurance issues.
Contributed to nearly all aspects of four victorious trial phases for a major historic product manufacturer seeking access to over $1 billion of insurance assets responsive to long-tail asbestos-related liabilities. In addition to examining the leading expert on the use of Section 468B qualified settlement funds in the final trial phase resulting in judgment for the insured, Chris worked closely with various fact and expert witnesses, briefed pre-trial motions, and became a specialist on the key issues of law and fact decided in the insured’s favor pertaining to allocation of long-tail losses, the application of non-cumulation of liability clauses, and successfully defending against certain insurers’ attempts to recover claim payments from the insured’s qualified settlement fund.
Drafted dispositive motions and contributed to appellate strategy and briefing for multiple high-profile insurance recovery actions seeking duty to defend mass asbestos and opioids claims under recent and historic general liability insurance programs.
Advised clients, conducted successful mediation, and briefed and argued motions related to first-party insurance claims for company-altering business interruption losses.
Worked closely with legal and compliance departments of major financial services clients to identify issues and guide responses to extensive US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) investigative and enforcement inquiries.
University of Michigan Law School, 2014, J.D., cum laude
Saint John's University, 2009, B.A., summa cum laude
District of Columbia
US District Court for the Central District of California
US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
US District Court for the Western District of Virginia
Awards and Affiliations
Member, Practice Group of the Year, Insurance, Law360 (2020)
Note Editor, Michigan Journal of Law Reform
Recommended, Dispute resolution: Product liability, mass tort and class action - defense: toxic tort, The Legal 500 US (2022)