Leland advises U.S. and European-based insurers on potential coverage issues and assists in monitoring complex litigation and regulatory investigations under directors and officers, media and technology errors and omissions, lawyers malpractice, cyber, bankers, investment advisors, financial services, fidelity, fiduciary, and employment practices liability policies. He also counsels professional liability insurers in coverage litigation in state and federal courts across the country. Leland was recognized by Law360 as a “Rising Star” in Insurance Law, named by The Legal 500 US as a “recommended lawyer” in Insurance Law, and selected by DCA Live as one of the “Rising Stars of Law 40 under 40.” In addition, Business Insurance magazine honored Leland with a “Break Out” award, honoring him as one of 40 top professionals on track to be the next leaders in the risk management and property/casualty insurance field.
- Obtained summary judgment in Virginia federal court that prior knowledge exclusion barred coverage under architects and engineers professional liability policy when insured aware of facts that might give rise to claim before policy inception. ChemTreat, Inc. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s of London, 2020 WL 5637961, 19-cv-00063 (E.D. Va. Sept. 21, 2020).
- Obtained summary judgment in California federal court that assault and battery exclusion in events policy was unambiguous as a matter of law and barred coverage for a negligence action arising from a stabbing that occurred at the insured event. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s of London Subscribing to Policy No. EH7713140 v WorldOne Presents, LLC, 2019 WL 4747708 (E.D. Cal. Sept. 30, 2019).
- Obtained Fourth Circuit affirmance of favorable district court ruling that all claims against insured engineering firm arising from the collapse of two, nearly identical bridges constituted “related claims” under architects and engineers professional liability policy and were subject to a single per claim limit of liability. Stewart Engineering v. Continental Cas. Co., 2018 WL 5832805, No. 18-1386 (4th Cir. Nov. 7, 2018).
- Obtained ruling by California federal court granting management liability insurer’s motion to dismiss lawsuit seeking coverage for securities class action based on prior acts exclusion barring coverage for claims arising out of wrongful acts before policy inception. Jayhawk Private Equity Fund II LP v. Liberty Ins. Underwriters, Inc., No. 17-cv-5523 (C.D. Cal. June 7, 2018).
- Obtained summary judgment ruling by North Carolina federal court that all claims against insured engineering firm arising from the collapse of two, nearly identical bridges constituted “related claims” and were subject to a single per claim limit of liability. Stewart Engineering v. Continental Cas. Co., 2018 WL 1403612, No. 5:15-CV-377-D (E.D.N.C. Mar. 20, 2018).
- Presented oral argument and obtained Ninth Circuit ruling that insurer had no duty to indemnify insured accountant for judgment arising from his solicitation of an investment in entity the accountant partially owned because insured’s actions did not constitute “professional services.” Continental Cas. Co. v. Kool Radiators, Inc., 2017 WL 1457031 (9th Cir. Apr. 25, 2017).
- Obtained summary judgment and Eleventh Circuit affirmance for liability insurer that eleven claims against insured pharmacy and pharmacist arising from use of two similar drugs for ocular injections on different dates constituted “related claims” under errors and omissions policies because the drugs were “negligently repackaged by the same individual at the same pharmacy for the same doctor over a relatively short period of time.” Cas. Co. of Reading, Pa. v. Belcher, 2017 WL 372094 (S.D. Fla. Jan. 26, 2017), aff’d 2017 WL 4276057 (11th Cir. Sept. 27, 2017).
- Obtained summary judgment determining that quality of services exclusion in a technology errors and omissions policy barred coverage for a lawsuit arising out of the insured online auction service’s alleged misrepresentations concerning the safety and reliability of its auctions. Equipmentfacts, LLC v. Beazley Ins. Co., 2016 WL 119651 (M.D. Fla. Jan. 12, 2017).
- Obtained reversal of adverse district court decision when appellate court held lawsuit alleging no malpractice by insured lawyer did not trigger coverage under a lawyers professional liability policy because lawsuit did not “arise out of an act or omission . . . in [the lawyer’s] rendering of or failure to render legal services.” Edwards v. Continental Casualty Co., 841 F.3d. 360 (5th Cir. Nov. 2, 2016).
- Obtained summary judgment determining that insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify insured accountant for lawsuit because insured had prior knowledge of claims before inception of policy and because lawsuit did not allege accountant performed any professional services. Continental Casualty Co. v. Stephen Evans, et al., No. 2:13-cv-2379-JJT (D. Ariz Apr. 21, 2015).
- Presented oral argument and obtained summary judgment determining that insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify insured accountant for lawsuit alleging that insured breached agreement to repay loans from client. Navigators Insurance Co. v. Hamlin, et al., 6:14-cv-196-MC, 2015 WL 1084825 (D. Or. Mar. 10, 2015).
- Obtained summary judgment determining that insurer had no duty to defend or indemnify insureds in an underlying malpractice suit arising from sale of investments in mortgages. Darwin National Assurance Company v. Rosenthal, et al., 2:13-cv-05670-FMO-RZ (C.D. Cal. Sept. 24, 2014).
- Particular experience in related claims litigation.
- Assists insurers in assessing potential bad faith exposure for claims handling practices and represents insurers in bad faith litigation.
- Drafts and reviews policy forms and endorsements for insurers with a focus on fidelity, commercial crime and cyber-liability wording addressing new risks and exposures.
- Research Assistant, Professor Jeffrey Parker, George Mason University School of Law (2007-2009)
- Legal Intern, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney's Office (2007)
- Defense Research Institute (DRI)
- Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS)
- Received a Business Insurance magazine "Break Out" Award (2019)
- Named one of DCA Live’s “Rising Stars of Law 40 under 40” (2018)
- Named by The Legal 500 US a “recommended lawyer” in Insurance Law (2018)
- Recognized by Law360 as a “Rising Star” in Insurance Law (2018)
J.D., magna cum laude, George Mason University School of Law
B.A., with high distinction, University of Virginia; Phi Beta Kappa; Lawn Resident
Member, George Mason Law Review
Bar and Court Memberships
- District of Columbia Bar
- Virginia Bar
- U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second, Fourth, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
Legal Lean Sigma Institute (LLSI) White Belt
Related News & Insights
- Press ReleaseWiley Rein's Leland Jones Earns Business Insurance Magazine's 'Break Out' AwardApril 30, 2019
- NewsletterFourth Circuit Affirms that All Claims Arising from Negligent Design of Two, Nearly Identical Bridges Constitute “Related Claims”Executive SummaryDecember 1, 2018
- Press ReleaseLaw360 Names Four Wiley Rein Lawyers as ‘Rising Stars’July 30, 2018
- Press ReleaseLegal 500 US Recognizes 42 Wiley Rein Lawyers Across Six Practice Areas NationallyJune 1, 2018