John A. Gibbons

Insurance Coverage

1825 Eye Street NW Washington, DC 20006-5403
T: (202) 420-3644


John Gibbons is a Washington, DC-based partner who serves as the Insurance Coverage Group’s regional leader for the Mid-Atlantic. He is also leader of the group’s Business Conduct Liabilities Practice.

John’s national practice focuses on advising corporate policyholders about their insurance policy rights and recovery insurance assets, either through negotiation or trial. He maintains a particularly active trial practice that includes serving as trial counsel for a Fortune 100 pharmaceutical company in a four-month trial, a Fortune 500 regulated utility in two separate multi-week jury trials, and a large multinational engineering services corporation in a three-judge panel arbitration. The 2012 edition of Legal 500 recommended John for his “subject-matter expertise and a business-focused approach.” In 2013, Benchmark Litigation also recognized John as a local (Washington, DC) “Litigation Star” and ranked him in the National Tier 1 level (one of only 11 for insurance nationally). John is a member of the Law360 Insurance editorial advisory board.


In the past decade, John has, through negotiations, litigation, and trial verdicts, enforced clients’ rights to more than $1 billion worth of insurance. Recently, John has focused his attention on emerging areas of interest for policyholders, including risks attendant to international business operations, assertions of various forms of liability for business conduct, and product liability and environmental liability issues.


John joined Dickstein Shapiro in 2000 and has in the past decade successfully handled a variety of insurance and commercial disputes.

Prior to joining the firm, John served as law clerk to the Honorable Ann O’Regan Keary, associate judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

Full Biography

Matter Experience

  • Litigation and trial counsel for a Fortune 50 company with asbestos and other long-tail liabilities in a coverage dispute with more than 50 separate insurance companies.

  • Litigation, trial, and appellate counsel for a regulated utility in two separate successful jury trials to recover for environmental liabilities, and in the insurer’s subsequent appeals.

  • Settlement, litigation, and trial counsel for a large industrial construction company to recover for asbestos liabilities.

  • Settlement and litigation counsel for multiple Fortune 500 companies with asbestos liabilities.

  • Settlement counsel for a large utility in a dispute with D&O insurers related to shareholders suits and related government investigations.

  • "Boston Gas Co. d/b/a Keyspan Energy Delivery New England v. Century Indemnity Co.

    Representation of Boston Gas Co. in an action involving insurance coverage for 28 Manufactured Gas Plant (MGP) sites and one Superfund site. Firm client won separate jury trials in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts in 2005 and 2007, establishing insurance coverage for two environmental sites.

  • Representation of the subsidiary of a large pharmaceutical company in securing insurance coverage related to products liability lawsuits after a bench trial in New Jersey Superior Court. The firm prevailed in enforcing rights to more than $1 billion of insurance from more than 50 insurance companies.

    Jurisdiction: New Jersey Superior Court

  • Represents a multinational engineering services company in connection with the company’s efforts to recover insurance proceeds for asbestos bodily injury claims. This representation has involved successful enforcement of insurance rights through various mechanisms, including: dispositive motions practice; formal arbitration trial; and negotiated settlements.

  • Represents a prominent government contracting business in pursuit of insurance recovery for defense costs responding the client has spent responding to the government proceedings.

  • Represented a law firm in negotiations with professional liability insurance carriers to fund a settlement with a bankrupt estate asserting claims against the client.

View all Experience

News and Views

View all News and Views

Honors and Awards

  • Benchmark Litigation: The Definitive Guide to America's Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys

  • Washington DC Super Lawyers

  • Benchmark Plaintiff: The Definitive Guide to America's Leading Plaintiff Litigation Firms and Attorneys

  • Legal 500: The Client's Guide to the US Legal Profession

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia
U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia


PAX Dev: Insurance 101 for Video Game Developers and Publishers

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On August 28, 2014, I presented with insurance broker Sara Owens of GNW Evergreen, a division of HUB International, at PAX Dev in Seattle, Washington. PAX Dev is a conference devoted to the video game developer community and the topic of game making. Conference tracks focused on programming, design, business, art, music and more. During … Continue Reading