Robert Dowhan (Bob) (He/Him)
Robert Dowhan (Bob) was educated at the University of Windsor (B.A. 1995) and the University of Western Ontario (1999). Since his call in 2001 Bob has defended the interests of insureds, insurers as well as other stakeholders in the insurance industry.
Prior to joining Dolden Wallace Folick, Bob was the senior litigation partner in the insurance practice group as well as managing partner at a large regional firm in Guelph, Ontario.
In his 20 years of litigation experience Bob developed a passion for complex property claims involving fraud, false or misleading statements, material changes and arson. Bob has extensive experience with all civil litigation including first party claims, third party liability claims, construction matters, and real and personal property disputes. Bob has appeared before all levels of Court in Ontario. Bob prides himself on being an effective trial advocate and finding the solutions to problems in a unique and practical fashion. Bob has been working with insurers providing insight and guidance on large and complex losses that involve multi-faceted claims including compromised structure, building replacement, loss of income and business interruption, loss of income and other nuanced insurance losses. Bob has an unparalleled understanding of policy wording and interpretation, the case law and legislation surrounding property and title insurance, as well as policies of commercial general liability insurance.
Bob finds complex and difficult claims with aspects of fraud, deceit and falsification absolutely fascinating and loves rolling up his sleeves to dig to the bottom of such claims. Bob has defended claims involving arson, staged or planned losses, and overt attempts to pump up or “boost” smaller legitimate losses. This has resulted in a close and constructive relationship with adjusters, special investigation teams, arson investigators and supporting engineers and experts. Bob has developed a swift and effective EUO process allowing for quick and effective examination of insureds in the course of larger complicated claims.
Bob has been working with first party property claims for almost two (2) decades. Bob advises insurers on the size, scope and extent of first party claims and has litigated the ongoing interpretation, meaning and applicability of both policy wording and the exclusions to same. Bob is a vocal advocate with unparalleled experience and understanding of the “Appraisal” process in Ontario for valuation of loses as well as when and how the courts are to be used in that process. There is no aspect of property claims that Bob has not taken through an entire litigation process.
Case: Le Treport Wedding and Convention Centre Ltd. v. Co-operators Insurance 2019 ONSC 3041 and 2020 ONCA 487
Case: DK Manufacturing Group Ltd v. Co-operators General Insurance Company 2016 ONSC 3983
Commercial General Liability
Bob has defended an extensive number of insured parties against claims launched against them. Bob has counselled insurers on the duty to defend and has litigated that duty through the court including the most recent interpretations of data and cyber related breaches through to environmental exposure and policy wording.
Bob has defended claims throughout the entire construction pyramid. In addition to insurance related litigation Bob has litigated all aspects of construction from trust claims through to lien claims. Bob has a particular understanding of the intersection between CGL liability and exclusions including but not limited to “Own Work” as well as the interplay of “Builders Risk” policies.
Bob has provided coverage opinions on any number of various issues but most frequently in relation to the duty to defend. Bob has been tasked with litigating applications ultimately determining an insurers’ obligation to defend its insured. Bob has successfully appealed duty to defend applications at the Ontario Court of Appeal.
Case: Family and Children’s Services of Lanark Leeds and Grenville v. Co-operators General Insurance Company 2021 ONCA 159.
Bob actively pursues subrogation matters and has taken matters through all facets of trial and appeal. Bob has successfully pursued those responsible for significant insured loses both by error or accident but also in larger schemes and designed insurance fraud schemes with innocent insureds. Bob has also been successful in defending subrogation claims that have been launched without merit. Bob has been successful in bringing litigation commenced on undetermined fires to a quick end saving significant legal costs and expense to the defending insurer.
Case: The Toronto Dominion Bank v. Nawab 2014 ONCA 152
Case: Destaron Property Management Ltd. V. Hindmarsh 2018 ONCA 200
Bob has represented Title Insurers in their ongoing litigation needs through all phases of litigation. Bob has taken matters through summary judgment and subsequent appeal in cases that have become defining cases in contractual interpretation.
Case: MacDonald v. Chicago Title Insurance Company of Canada 2015 ONCA 842.