Bob was singled out for special recognition and individually ranked #2 (tie) among Illinois reinsurance attorneys in the 2006-2012 editions of Chambers USA Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. “Robert Hermes's reinsurance expertise stretches to the bankruptcy and insolvency areas. He is respected in the field as an effective litigator and arbitrator.” Bob was also named a leader in insurance law in the 2011-2013 editions of The Best Lawyers in America. And, as part of the Law Bulletin Publishing Group’s 2012 survey of the top lawyers in the state, he was designated as a "Leading Lawyer" in Illinois in Commercial Litigation.
Reinsurance experience includes disputes involving the scope and applicability of arbitration clauses, placement disclosures, claim handling, adherence to underwriting guidelines, retrospectively rated business, obligations to follow settlements, allocation of settlements, obligations under surplus share reinsurance contracts, excess of loss contracts, application of ultimate net loss and net retained line clauses, clash covers and accounting for premiums and losses. Bob has also provided reinsurance advice to insurance company clients who are involved in the large asbestos bankruptcies including, Western MacArthur, Combustion Engineering, W.R. Grace, Bigelow-Liptak, Kentile Floors and Bendix.
During his career, Bob has been involved in more than 25 major trials and 75 reinsurance arbitrations. Significant cases include:
Antler v. Classic Residence Management, 315 Ill. App. 3d 259 (Ill. App. Ct. 1st Dist. 2000) (successful defense of class-action alleging ordinance violations)
Glass v. Kemper Corporation, 133 F.3d 999 (7th Cir. 1998) (affirming summary judgment for defendants in fraud and breach of contract action)
Winterthur “Swiss” Insurance Company, et al. v. First State Insurance Company, et al., Mealey’s Litigation Report: Reinsurance, March 8, 1995, at B-1 (a bench trial in federal court enforcing an agreement to arbitrate and the companion arbitration) First State Insurance Company, et al. v. Winterthur “Swiss” Insurance Company, et al., Mealey’s Litigation Report: Reinsurance, March 22, 1995 at A-1 (confirmed D. Conn)
Universal Reinsurance Corporation v. Allstate Insurance Company, 16 F.3d 125 (7th Cir. 1994) (leading case on duty to appoint arbitrators in compliance with contractual deadlines)
In re Rehabilitation of Centaur v. Hartford Fire Insurance Co., 158 Ill.2d 166 (Ill. Sup. Ct. 1994) (creditor’s standing to pursue alter ego claim against parent of insolvent reinsurer)
Selcke, Rehabilitator of Centaur Insurance Company v. New England Insurance Company, 995 F2d 688 (7th Cir. 1993) (set-off issues in insolvency and the duty to arbitrate disputes regarding set-offs)
Hartford Casualty Insurance Company v. Borg-Warner Corporation, 913 F.2d 1342 (7th Cir. 1990) (Federal abstention in case of insurance insolvency)
McHugh v. McHugh, 676 F. Supp 856 (N.D. Ill. 1988) (successfully represented the defendant in an action alleging violations of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5)
Daniels, Liquidator of Northern Financial & Guaranty Company, Ltd. v. Powell, 604 F. Supp. 689 (N.D. Ill. 1985) (summary judgment in favor of a government authorized liquidator for conversion against controlling shareholder)