Phillip R. Earnest

Phillip R. Earnest

PHILLIP R. EARNEST is a partner based in the firm’s Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania office whose practice focuses primarily on insurance coverage claims and litigation, commercial litigation, and construction claims and litigation.

Mr. Earnest has extensive experience trying cases before juries, arguing before appellate courts, and mediating or resolving matters in alternative dispute resolution proceedings, including the American Arbitration Association.  In addition to representing insureds and insurers in coverage claims and litigation, Mr. Earnest has represented numerous businesses and individuals in commercial and tort litigation involving contractual disputes for non-delivery, non-payment, violations of restrictive covenants, corporate formation and dissolution, trademark violations, construction delay, construction defect, mechanic’s lien, and payment bond lien actions.  In his primary specialty, insurance coverage, Mr. Earnest is currently representing clients in the following representative disputes:

·      Coverage dispute involving multiple TCPA federal class actions filed against national clothing retailer for spam texting customers

·      Coverage dispute involving manufacturing defects alleged against designer and manufacturer of water and chemical processing facility in Canadian tar sands

·      Coverage/Bad Faith dispute claims of manufacturer’s alleged groundwater contamination brought by DEP and by private claimants in separate lawsuits

·      Bad Faith dispute involving failure to accept tender of additional insured status for amusement parks owner under rock concert promoter’s policy

·      Coverage dispute involving application of fidelity policy to fines levied by E.U. and DOJ against international manufacturer engaged in international anti-trust conspiracy

·      Coverage/Bad Faith dispute involving FCRA class action filed against staffing companies

·      Coverage dispute involving medical licensing class action filed against health care system

·      Coverage dispute involving professional liability for fraudulent title conveyances

·      Construction/Design dispute involving collapse of 700 ft. retaining wall behind new elementary school

·      Construction/Design dispute involving failed wet sprinkler system in university building

·      Construction/Design dispute involving structural beams in residential homes

·      Non-Payment/Lien dispute involving shale gas pipelines

·      Delay/Defect dispute involving new high school project

·      Delay/Defect dispute involving new hotel project

In addition to authoring amicus briefs on behalf of the Pennsylvania Defense Institute, Mr. Earnest frequently publishes articles and speaks before clients, industry organizations, and attorneys regarding developments in his areas of practice, focusing on insurance coverage and claims and construction contracting and claims.

Mr. Earnest is a member of the Allegheny County Bar Association, Pennsylvania Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Defense Institute, the American Bar Association, and the alumni associations of Penn State, West Virginia University, and the University of Pittsburgh.  He is admitted to practice in state and federal courts in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, as well as pro hac vice admissions in other jurisdictions.



Practice Areas

  • Litigation
  • Construction Practice Consortium
  • Insurance Coverage

Education and Practice

B.A. Pennsylvania State University
M.A. West Virginia University
J.D. University of Pittsburgh