John Buchanan, a partner in Covington & Burling's Washington office, has been engaged in insurance coverage advocacy, dispute resolution and counseling since the early 1980s. He served as the firm's first Insurance Practice Group Coordinator for a decade. Mr. Buchanan's coverage litigation career began with DES and asbestos claims and has subsequently extended to environmental, hearing loss, repetitive stress injury, "deleterious substance" and other mass tort claims; broadcast, intellectual property and competition-related liability coverage claims; D&O, E&O, and EPL claims; and crime, fidelity, product recall, cargo, satellite in-orbit, and other complex first-party coverage claims.
More recently, Mr. Buchanan has represented policyholders pursuing insurance claims for losses arising from data breaches reported to be among the largest in history, starting with the TJX payment card data thefts discovered in late 2006; and he frequently counsels policyholders in underwriting their cyber and technology errors and omissions policies.
Mr. Buchanan teaches a graduate-level course on Insurance Litigation at the Insurance Law Center of the University of Connecticut School of Law. He has also taught insurance-related topics at the University of Virginia Law School and in a wide variety of CLE programs. He is the author or co-author of numerous papers and articles on topics relating to insurance, litigation and alternative dispute resolution, and co-authored one of the earliest publications on cyber insurance coverage.
Mr. Buchanan currently serves as an invited member of the Board of Advisors to the American Law Institute’s Project on the Law of Liability Insurance. He served on the ABA Dispute Resolution Section’s Task Force on Improving Mediation Quality, whose report was issued in 2008. He has co-chaired the American Bar Association's Task Force on Complex Insurance Coverage Litigation, served on the ABA Task Force for a Manual on Complex Insurance Coverage Litigation, and co-chaired the annual meeting of the ABA Litigation Section's Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee (ICLC); and he continues to serve in various leadership roles for the ICLC. As a member of the American Law Institute, he has served on the Members' Consultative Group for the Restatement (Third) of Torts, in addition to his current role with the Liability Insurance Project. He also served recently as an elected member of the Steering Committee of the Law Practice Management Section of the District of Columbia Bar.
In addition to his law practice, Mr. Buchanan has served as parent body President and Governing Board member for St. Albans School and on the Andover Alumni Council, as well as other ongoing charity board memberships and activities in the Washington, DC area.