Nick Krnjevic

Lawyer, Partner

Expertise

Insurance Law

Language

English, French

Office

Montréal

 

Nick Krnjevic is a Partner in our Insurance Law Group. His practice focuses on insurance law and private international law.

His insurance practice includes advising on, and litigating, insurance and reinsurance issues pertaining to primary and excess CGL, E&O, D&O, EPLI, Cyber, Property, Business Interruption and Fidelity coverage.

He also acts as monitoring coverage counsel in domestic and international litigation. He also advises insurance carriers on drafting issues and provides insurance-related commercial leasing advice. He resolves, via mediation, arbitration and litigation, complex insurance coverage disputes involving the interpretation of a variety of insurance contracts.

His private international law practice includes advising on, and litigating, jurisdiction, choice of law, and enforcement issues. He also provides private international law-related advice on insurance coverage issues and commercial agreements.

He has successfully represented insurers and commercial clients before all levels of Quebec Courts and the Supreme Court of Canada.


Representative files and mandates

Examples of cases pleaded by Nick Krnjevic in recent years include:

Future Electronics Inc. (Distribution) Pte Ltd. c. Chubb Insurance Company of Canada, 2020 QCCS 3042 — Nick Krnjevic successfully acted as lead defense counsel in this matter, which is the first Canadian ruling on the interplay between the social engineering fraud, computer fraud, and funds transfer fraud insuring clauses of a commercial crime policy. The insured’s claim for coverage for a multi-million dollar social engineering fraud loss was dismissed.

SOS Remorques inc. c. Énergir, 2020 QCCS 9 — Nick Krnjevicsuccessfully acted as lead defense counsel in this trigger of coverage dispute, and secured the dismissal of the insured’s claim for defense and indemnity in respect of a seven-figure loss.

Brunette v. Legault Joly Thiffault, s.e.n.c.r.l., 2018 SCC 55 — In conjunction with partner Katherine Delage, and associate Ann-Julie Auclair, Nick Krnjevic successfully defended a firm of tax lawyers before the Supreme Court of Canada and obtained the dismissal of a claim for over $50 million for alleged negligence in corporate structuring and tax planning transactions.

Peracomo Inc. v. TELUS Communications Co., 2014 SCC 29, April 23, 2014 — Along with another partner from the firm, Nick Krnjevic successfully represented Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada before the Supreme Court of Canada in this case where the Court recognized that a fisherman who had severed a submarine fiber-optic cable had committed wilful misconduct that allowed the insurer to deny coverage.

GreCon Dimter inc. v. J.R. Normand inc., 2005 SCC 46 — Successfully represented German manufacturer Grecon Dimter before the Supreme Court of Canada in this case on jurisdiction of Quebec courts. The Court gave effect to the choice of forum clause in favour of Germany that was in a contract with a Quebec purchaser. The Court allowed our appeal on behalf of Grecon Dimter and concluded that Quebec courts should have declined jurisdiction.

Stormbreaker Marketing and Productions Inc. c. Weinstock, 2013 QCCA 69 — Represented a Quebec company in a case involving Quebec courts’ jurisdiction to rule on a breach of his fiduciary duties by an attorney residing in the United States. The Court of Appeal ruled in favour of Mr. Krnjevic’s client.

Canadian National Railway Company c. Chartis Insurance Company of Canada (Commerce and Industry Insurance Company of Canada), 2013 QCCA 1271 — Successfully represented the insurer in the case that led to the first Quebec law judgment on the relationship between insureds and insurers involving an excess liability policy with a self-insured retention (S.I.R.) provision.

Velan inc. c. GCAN Insurance Company, 2012 QCCA 1490 — Represented an insurer denying coverage in a product liability claim of over $2 million. The Court of Appeal agreed with Nick Krnjevic’s argument that the loss was not a damage under the policy.

Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company of Canada c. H.A. Simons Ltd., 2011 QCCA 1194 — Along with partner Michel Green, Nick Krnjevic successfully defended H.A. Simons and other parties against a claim of more than $8 million. The Court of Appeal ruled that there was no de jure subrogation between the excess insurer and the insured, thus denying the claim.



Honours

Since 2006, Nick Krnjevic appears in the annual edition of Best Lawyers in Canada. He appears under the Insurance Law and Product Liability categories.

He also appears in Who’s Who Legal Canada: Insurance & Reinsurance.



Associations

Canadian Bar Association

International Bar Association

Defense Research Institute: member of the Insurance: Canadian Law/Cross-Border Issues sub-committee



Bulletins

Quebec Liability Insurance Duty to Defend Update

2 May 2022

After missing the net on his first attempt, the Minister of Finance has scored a goal with his second effort at drafting regulations identifying liability insurance contracts that are exempt from Quebec’s public order “defence in addition to limits” requirement. Overview On May 5, 2022, a revised, long-overdue regulation [Regulation][1] will come into force that […]

Court of Appeal of Quebec: Insurance Policy Arbitration Clause Trumps COVID-19 Class Action

3 November 2021

Multi-tiered “mediation-arbitration” clauses are increasingly popular since they not only offer flexibility in the manner of resolving disputes, but also provide a timely, cost-effective dispute-resolution option that enables the parties to proactively intervene in the early stages of the dispute. The Court of Appeal of Quebec has rendered an important decision that enables insurance companies […]

A Draft Regulation Significantly Changes the Duty to Defend in Quebec

10 September 2021

On September 8, 2021, the Quebec Minister of Finance published in Part 2 of the Official Gazette of Quebec a draft of the regulation [Draft Regulation] that specifies the categories of insurance contracts, and insured parties, that may derogate, in part, from the rules set out in articles 2500 and 2503 of the Civil Code […]

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Publications and Conferences

Nick Krnjevic is the author or coauthor of:

  • Commercial Insurance Policies, Annotated, Thomson Reuters / Carswell, 1996 (loose-leaf with continuing updating)
  • Residential Insurance Policies, Annotated, Thomson Reuters / Carswell, 1994 (loose-leaf with continuing updating)
  • (with Prof. Jeffrey Talpis) “The Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements of June 30, 2005: The Elephant that Gave Birth to a Mouse”, (2006) 13 Sw. J.L. & Trade Americas 1

He is also contributor to the following publications:

  • Insurance Risk and Management
  • Lawyers Weekly
  • Développements récents en droit des assurances
  • Répertoire électronique de jurisprudence du Barreau – Droit civil en ligne.

His communications include:

  • “Naviguer les complexités des clauses d’assurance”, a lecture recognized by the Quebec Bar’s continuing education programme, given on May 17, 2016, at OpenForumOuvert’s Forum on commercial leases
  • “Developments in Cyber Regulation, Litigation and Insurance”, published in Les récents développements en droit des assurances, 2015, Yvon Blais

He has been a regular guest speaker for:

  • Canadian Institute
  • Insight.


Community Involvement

American Contract Bridge League: Recorder of Unit 151 (Montréal), in charge of investigating and appraising allegations of ethical violations

McGill legal information clinic: pro bono advisor on insurance issues



Education

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

McGill University

1986

Bachelor of civil law and common law

McGill University

1983

Bachelor of Arts

McGill University

1979


Call to Bar

Quebec

1987