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Donald W. Kiel

Donald Kiel’s practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, including commercial insurance coverage litigation and counseling, as well as environmental, toxic tort and tort litigation, and construction and contract litigation.

He has handled some of the largest insurance coverage disputes for corporate policyholders in state and federal courts throughout the country. Donald’s experience includes litigation, arbitration, appraisals and counseling concerning insurance coverage for environmental, asbestos, directors and officers, antitrust, product (including pharmaceutical and chemical), employment practices, entertainment event cancellation, e-commerce and gun liability, as well as for first party losses (including business interruption) arising from natural disasters and 9/11 and claims under health insurance plans and life insurance policies. He also counsels clients concerning the purchase and negotiation of commercial insurance policies.

Donald’s practice includes serving as counsel and arbitrator in several commercial arbitrations throughout the United States. He has been selected by policyholders to serve as a party appointed arbitrator in a number of large insurance coverage arbitrations, including claims involving a loss of a gas and oil drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico during Hurricane Rita; and multiple D&O insurance coverage disputes. Donald has also handled several large insurance coverage arbitrations on behalf of policyholder clients involving both first party losses and D&O insurance coverage disputes.

Donald has also defended several significant environmental and toxic tort litigations, including precedent setting environmental justice litigation, CERCLA and similar state statutory cost recovery litigation, along with related toxic tort class actions, wrongful death litigation and multiple plaintiff lawsuits. He also regularly counsels and represents clients in litigation concerning contractual indemnity claims for asbestos, environmental and other liabilities.

Donald has also handled numerous commercial litigations and counseled clients on the resolution of commercial disputes short of litigation.

Donald has been listed in Best Lawyers in America in the area of Insurance Law (Bad Faith, Coverage, Dispute Resolution, Plaintiffs) since 2006.

Donald served as a Law Clerk for the Honorable Sherwin D. Lester, Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, from 1982-1983. Donald has been listed in the Best Lawyers in America in Insurance Law since 2006 and has been selected as a New Jersey Super Lawyer in Insurance Law.

  • Best Lawyers in America, Insurance Law, 2006-2020
  • New Jersey Super Lawyers, Insurance Coverage
  • American Bar Association (Litigation Section, Committee on Insurance Coverage Litigation)
  • Member, Board of Trustees, Morristown and Morris Township Joint Free Public Library
  • District V.A Supreme Court Ethics Committee (Former Member)
  • Trial Attorneys of New Jersey (Former Board Member)
  • “Free Money: Insurance Coverage under Policies Issued to Other Companies,” Association of Corporate Counsel New Jersey 16th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 20, 2019.
  • “Understanding and Managing Cyber Risk,” Association of Corporate Counsel New Jersey 15th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 15, 2017.
  • “A Primer on Directors and Officers and Similar Professional Liability Insurance,” Association of Corporate Counsel New Jersey 14th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 16, 2016.
  • “A Primer on Directors and Officers and Similar Professional Liability Insurance,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 12th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 19, 2014.
  • “A Primer on D&O Insurance,” American Bankers Association General Counsel Group Meeting, November 14, 2013.
  • “An Introduction to Corporate Insurance,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 11th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 20, 2013.
  • “Superstorm Sandy: Are You Covered,” K&L Gates Webinar, November 13, 2012.
  • “Insurance 101: A Basic Level Introduction to Corporate Insurance,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 10th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 21, 2012.
  • “Contractual Indemnities and Insurance: Not Always Perfect Together,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 9th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 23, 2011.
  • “Climate Change and Sustainability: Selected Issues Regarding Risk Management, Liability and Insurance,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 8th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 24, 2010.
  • “Sustainability: Selected Issued Regarding Liability and Insurance,” New Jersey Risk and Insurance Managers Society Meeting, April 13, 2010.
  • “Insurance Coverage and the Financial Crisis,” K&L Gates Webinar, February 26, 2009.
  • “‘Free Money’ Insurance Coverage under Policies Issued to Other Companies,” New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association 6th Annual Full Day CLE Conference, September 18, 2008.
  • Panelist, “Developing a Goods Sold and Delivered Case,” New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, September 2004.
  • “Negotiating Insurance Settlements for Long-Tail Exposure Claims,” ABA/ACCA Conference for Corporate Counsel: “The Legal Department’s Role in Enhancing the Corporate Bottom Line,” June 2002.
  • “Indemnification and Insurance Contract Provisions – A Primer,” ABA Section of Business Law 2002 Spring Meeting Program Titled, “Terrorist Attacks, Catastrophes and Insurance Coverage Litigation, Relationship with Risk Managers and Contractual Indemnities, Old and New Insurance Topics for Corporate Counsel,” April 2002.
  • “The Owned Property Exclusion Under New Jersey Law,” New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education Seminar, “Environmental Insurance From A to Z,” September 2001.
  • Panelist, “Insurance Issues in Toxic and Environmental Contamination,” New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, September and November 1991.
  • “IMO Industries Tackles New Jersey Law on Host of Insurance Coverage Issue,” FC&S Legal: Insurance Coverage Law Report, January/February 2015.
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