HomeKieran Leary

Kieran Leary

Bio 2001 Bryan Street, Suite 1800 Dallas, Texas 75201 214-880-1825

Education

  • Florida International University, College of Law (J.D., 2010) (Top 10% of graduating class)
  • University of Maryland, College Park (B.A., 2005)(cum laude)

Admitted to Practice

  • State of Texas
  • State of Florida
  • State of Connecticut
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • Commonwealth of Massachusetts
  • All Texas federal courts
  • All Florida federal courts
  • United States District Court for the District of Connecticut
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Awards & Honors

  • Connecticut Law Tribune—2018 Insurance Coverage Litigation Department of the Year

Practice Description

Mr. Leary is a partner in QSLWM’s Insurance Coverage Group. He has regularly been retained in complex and high exposure coverage disputes, including COVID-19 lawsuits; hurricane, hail, and leaking pipe claims in Texas; sinkhole lawsuits in Florida; professional liability claims; and sexual abuse claims.

Kieran possesses successful first chair jury trial and appellate experience. Mr. Leary is also a frequent speaker on insurance-related issues, including the latest developments in appraisal and first party claims in Texas, and coverage issues pertaining to rip and tear costs.

Representative Experience

Kieran was lead trial and co-appellate counsel in the seminal Connecticut Supreme Court case of Karas v. Liberty Ins. Corp., 335 Conn. 62, 228 A.3d 1012 (2019), which resolved the crumbling concrete foundation “collapse” crisis decisively in favor of insurers. He was lead trial and appellate counsel in Dino v. Safeco Ins. Co. of Am, which Law360 identified as one of “4 Insurance Battles To Watch At State High Courts” in the Fall of 2019. Dino concerned the appropriate trigger of coverage for a supposed progressive first party property loss. The decisions in Karas and Dino saved carriers $2 billion in contractual damages alone.

Prior to his relocation to North Texas in 2018, Kieran’s penchant for obtaining favorable judgments of first impression resulted in the recognition of his prior firm as the Connecticut Law Tribune’s Insurance Coverage Litigation Department of the Year.

Kieran grew up between Northwest Philly and Harris County, Texas. He dedicated his summers in college to educational and literacy outreach efforts in Philly’s most impoverished communities on behalf of the Philadelphia Phillies. Since his relocation to North Texas, Kieran has been a frequent volunteer at the North Texas Food Bank.

Publications, Seminars, and Cases

Karas v. Liberty Ins. Corp., 335 Conn. 62, 228, A.3d 1012 (2019)(Substantial impairment of structural integrity standard applies to “collapse” provisions of homeowners’ policy and requires a showing that the building is in imminent danger of falling down or caving in; and coverage exclusion for loss to foundation includes the basement walls)

Obtained summary judgment in busted pipe lawsuit in Abilene, Texas

Obtained judgment of dismissal in Hurricane Harvey lawsuit in Southern District of Texas

1700 Barnum Ave. et. al v. West American Ins. Co. (Conn. Super. 2017)(Defense verdict as first-chair following five-day jury trial in matter concerning multi-million dollar commercial property loss)

Betancourt v. Florida Ins. Guar. Ass’n., Inc., 153 So.3d 936 (Fla. 2d DCA 2014)(Judgment in favor of defense in confirmed sinkhole in matter of first impression concerning interplay of Florida’s sinkhole and guaranty fund statutes)

Roberts v. Liberty Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 264 F.Supp. 3d 394 (D.Conn. 2017)(Judgment on bad faith and unfair insurance practices counts in a “collapse” lawsuit in matter of first impression which established good-faith nature of coverage denial in bonafide coverage dispute)

Vera v. Liberty Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 335 Conn. 110, 228 A.3d 1009 (2019)(Substantial impairment of structural integrity standard applies to “collapse” provisions of homeowners’ policy and requires a showing that the building is in imminent danger of falling down or caving in; and coverage exclusion for loss to foundation includes the basement walls)

Lester v. Liberty Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 325 F.Supp.3d 243 (D. Conn. 2018)(Judgment in favor of insurer in a crumbling foundation lawsuit in matter of first impression regarding proper interpretation of “collapse” provision in policy)

Alexander v. General Ins. Co. of Am., 2017 WL 188134 (D. Conn. 2017)(Judgment in favor of insurer in a crumbling foundation lawsuit in matter of first impression concerning proper interpretation of abrupt “collapse” provision in policy)

Kowalyshyn v. Excelsior Ins. Co., 2018 WL 888724 (D. Conn. 2018)(Judgment in favor of insurer in matter of first impression which established the applicability of a manifestation coverage trigger to first party property loss claims)

Soderburg v. Unitrin Preferred Ins. Co., 2018 WL 3862330 (Conn. Super. 2018)(Judgment in favor of insurer in matter of first impression which addressed interplay of appropriate coverage trigger for first party property losses in relation to Policy’s suit limitation provision)