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Loren D. Podwill

Shareholder, Portland

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Loren D. Podwill

Shareholder, Portland

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Loren is a nationally-recognized trial attorney with a business and accounting background that offers an advantage when representing clients in tough financial disputes. With decades of experience successfully resolving conflict through mediation, arbitration and trial, his focus is on helping clients make the best possible business decision going forward. He was in business before becoming an attorney and is a problem solver who looks at issues from a pragmatic standpoint.

Business and operational experience

Loren has served as firm President since 2014 and prior to that served as a member of the firm’s Board of Directors. Loren continues to actively practice law and represent clients in addition to his duties as firm President. Loren is in line to serve as Chair of the ABA Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) for the 2023-2024 bar year. 

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Fidelity and surety practice

Loren serves as Bullivant’s Fidelity and Surety Practice Group Leader. He brings practical business sense to his surety work and works closely with claims professionals to resolve performance and payment bond claims and indemnity recovery. Loren also has extensive experience representing insurers with respect to fidelity, financial institution bond, lender liability, crime, cyber, D&O, and E&O claims. 

With a deep understanding of the banking system, Loren has handled numerous coverage cases involving failed banks around the country and has litigated extensively with the FDIC. 

Types of claims and disputes

  • Surety, fidelity, cyber, financial institution bonds (FIB), directors and officers (D&O), errors and omissions (E&O), and lender liability claims
  • State and federal Miller Act claims and Dispute Act claims in the United States Court of Federal Claims
  • Commercial litigation that includes breach of contract, securities, and construction
  • Intellectual property litigation, including copyright and trade secret cases with an emphasis on copyrighted music and departing employees
  • Loren serves as outside general counsel for a private university in Washington and regularly advises on employment, contract, disciplinary, and regulatory issues.

Because he cares about getting the best result for his clients, Loren’s approach is to be more objective in understanding and evaluating the other side. He’s transparent with clients and tells them what they need to hear, whether good or bad, anticipates their needs, and presents recommendations upfront with a path to resolution. Loren prides himself in responsive, timely, and clear communications with clients. As firm President, Loren understands the importance of clear, decisive, and timely business decisions and the need to eliminate last-minute surprises and delayed communications.


Bar Admissions

  • Oregon, 1984
  • Washington, 1984

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, District of Oregon
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington


  • Willamette University, College of Law – J.D., cum laude, 1984
  • Colorado State University – B.S., Business Administration (Accounting), 1979


Fidelity & Surety Cases (partial list) 

Failed bank litigation
Represented multiple insurers on coverage issues and coverage litigation on claims by the FDIC against directors and officers of failed banks in Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Kansas, and other jurisdictions. Successfully obtained several summary judgment rulings from both the district court and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals regarding the regulatory exclusion and insured v. insured exclusion as applicable to the FDIC.

Ponzi scheme
Represented insurer on crime policy with regard to multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme involving 1031 exchange accommodation.

Bank director dishonest acts
Represented insurer on $10 million financial institution bond claim involving alleged dishonest acts of director in capacity as the bank’s largest borrower.

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Lender liability claim by bridge lender
Represented insurer on coverage claims under director and officer and lender liability policies with regard to claims brought against insured bank by bridge lender and borrower. Prevailed on summary judgment. Judgment on bridge lender claim affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. 

D&O/E&O/Lender liability policies/financial institution bonds
Numerous coverage and defense assignments on financial institution bonds, commercial crime policies, D&O, E&O, and lender liability policies and endorsements. 

Bio-containment research facility
Represented surety on performance bond claim following default and termination of electrical subcontractor on a state of the art bio-containment research facility complex in Montana. 

Military base
Represented surety on default by bond principal on military base construction projects in Hawaii, Alaska and Guam. We handled the investigation, takeover, completion, and recovery, including successful trial in the Federal Court of Claims against the Air Force for payments made after receipt of stop-payment notices. Also recovered a substantial settlement from architects. 

Multiple project default
Represented surety in default by bond principal on public works projects in Oregon and Washington involving several schools, fire stations and a police station. Assignment included takeover agreements, completion issues and recovery. 

Pubic works projects
Represented various sureties on state and federal public works projects including roads, sewers, facility construction, hospitals, ferryboat construction, etc. Assist claims professionals on all aspects of performance bond claims, payment bond claims, and recovery actions against indemnitors and others. 

Probate conservator bonds
Represented surety on probate and conservatorship bond claims for alleged breaches of fiduciary duties and embezzlement of funds and related recovery claims against bond principal and indemnitors. 

Appeal bonds
Represented surety in recovery action on appeal bond requiring coordinated litigation in civil and probate courts in order to foreclose on real property collateral and address various probate claims.

License and miscellaneous bonds
Regularly represent sureties on license bond and miscellaneous bond claims including investigation, defense and indemnity.

Commercial Litigation Cases (partial list)

Employee embezzlement
Represented local company in claims against its bank related to the embezzlement by an employee of hundreds of thousands of dollars through the use of unauthorized checks. Case settled following a jury verdict in favor of our client.

Antitrust and defamation claims against towboat company
Defended towboat company in a case involving federal antitrust law claims and common law claims of defamation and intentional interference with contractual relations. Antitrust claims were based on allegations of predatory conduct in the marketplace. Obtained judgment as a matter of law for defendants on common law claims and negotiated a settlement with the plaintiffs to resolve the antitrust claims.

Antitrust and Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) case for equipment manufacturer
Representation at trial of an international manufacturer of filling and processing equipment. Following a 10-week trial, obtained a multi-million dollar verdict and defeated anti-trust and UCC claims. Securities fraud claims were settled.

Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) class action lawsuits
Defended several national personal lines insurance companies in federal class action cases alleging willful violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. §1681, et seq. Potential exposure to our clients varied from millions to billions of dollars. On statutory issues of first impression, the insurance companies prevailed in the District Court on motions for summary judgment prior to the District Court’s determination of whether to certify a class. The plaintiffs appealed. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed. The U.S. Supreme Court reversed the Ninth Circuit in substantial part and affirmed in part. 

International aviation consulting firm
Represented an international aviation consulting firm in a $100 million lawsuit brought by a state pension fund involving municipal bonds issued for the construction of an airplane maintenance facility. In defending the lawsuit, we filed third-party claims against several state agencies, including the Department of Treasury, Department of Justice, and the local port authority. The case against our clients was settled following mediation for a fraction of the original claim. The claims against the other defendants went to trial, resulting in a $65 million verdict in favor of the state pension fund.

Music copyright infringement
Represented copyright holders in numerous lawsuits involving the unauthorized public performances of copyrighted music.

Pirate packing of life rafts
Represented commercial fishermen against a company that packed life rafts that failed to properly inflate when their boat sank. The company had previously been decertified by the life raft manufacturer. Prevailed after jury trial resulting in damages for fishermen and new Coast Guard rules prohibiting “pirate packing.”

Represented international seed supplier in Chapter 13 bankruptcy of a frozen vegetable distributor. Successfully secured status as a secured creditor resulting in recovery in excess of $1 million.

  • American Bar Association, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (Section Chair 2023-2024; Section Vice Chair 2020-2022; Revenue Officer 2017-2020; Financial Officer 2014-2017; Council Member 2011-2014; Vice Chair Business Litigation Committee, Fidelity & Surety Law Committee, and Law in Public Service Committee)
  • Gus J. Solomon American Inn of Court (Member) (President, 2009-2010; Secretary & Treasurer, 1995-2009) 
  • Multnomah Bar Association (Member) 
  • Oregon Business Association (Director, 2000-2011) 
  • Oregon State Bar (Chair, Business Litigation Section, 2003; Member, Board of Bar Examiners, 1994-1997) 
  • Western States Surety Conference (Co-Sponsor & Speaker, 1994-Present)

Volunteer Work (partial list)

  • American Bar Association Financial Literacy Project
  • American Bar Association Project Outreach (Nationwide High School Peer Mediation Program) 
  • American Bar Association Domestic Violence Project 
  • Oregon State Bar Association Senior Law Project 
  • Global Vision (Community Advisory Group) 
  • Community Vision, Inc. (Member, Seven Corners Community Collaborative Capital Campaign Committee)
  • Co-Speaker & Author, “Can Claims Handlers be Subject to Personal Bad Faith Liability in Washington and Other Western States,” Western States Surety Conference (2021).
  • Co-Speaker, “Return to Work: Employee Reintegration After COVID-19,” American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) Webinar, May 2020
  • Co-Speaker & Author, “King County v. Travelers, et al. – A Site Visit to the Washington Supreme Court,” Western States Surety Conference (2017) 
  • Co-Speaker & Author, “Change is in the Air: Recent Changes in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure,” Western States Surety Conference (2016) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Surety Bad Faith: A Pre-Flight Safety Briefing,” Western States Surety Conference (2015) 
  • Co-Speaker & Author, “Cyberwar, Hacks and Heartbleed: Introduction to Loss Recovery and Insurance Coverage Issues For Data Breaches,” Western States Surety Conference (2014) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Introduction to Extra-Contractual Insurance Claims in Washington State,” Western States Surety Conference (2013) 
  • Moderator, “The Bare Essentials: The ABC’s of Payment Bond Claim Handling,” Western States Surety Conference (2012) 
  • Speaker, “The Law of Payment Bonds,” American Bar Association (ABA) Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) Fidelity & Surety Fall Meeting (2011) 
  • Chapter Author, “Introduction To Payment Bonds,” American Bar Association, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS), The Law of Payment Bonds, 2nd Ed. (2011) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Washington’s ‘Insurance Fair Conduct Act’—A Potential Landmine for the Unwary,” Western States Surety Conference (2011) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Dancing With the ‘Solvent Principal’: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” Western States Surety Conference (2007) 
  • Chapter Author, “Performance Bond Manual (Oregon Chapter),” American Bar Association (ABA) Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) (2006) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Contract Notice, Protest, and Formal Claims Procedures: A Potential Trap for the Unwary!” Western States Surety Conference (2006) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Tag, You’re It! Can the Surety Shift the Loss or Enhance Recovery by Accessing the Principal’s Insurance?” Western States Surety Conference (2005) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Fidelity Bonds: An Overview for Surety Law Practitioners,” Western States Surety Conference (2004) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Mold Claims:  Are Sureties at Risk?” Western States Surety Conference (2003)  
  • Co-Speaker, “The False Claims Act:  What is a ‘Claim’?” Western States Surety Conference (2002)  
  • Co-Speaker, “Sureties & Indemnity Agreements: Three Variations on a Theme,” Western States Surety Conference (2001)  
  • Co-Speaker, “Watch Out for that Left Hook: The Bankruptcy Trustee, Preference Transactions, and the Risk to the Surety,” Western States Surety Conference (2000)  
  • Co-Speaker, “Sun City: One Unhappy Owner,” Western States Surety Conference (1999) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Handling Payment Bond Claims,” Western States Surety Conference (1998) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Read My Lips: Surety Stop Payment Notices,” Western States Surety Conference (1996) 
  • Chapter Author, “Summary Judgment,” Oregon State Bar (OSB), Federal Civil Litigation (1994 & 1998; 2002 & 1998 Supplement) 
  • Chapter Author, “Scope of Payment Bond Surety’s Obligation,” American Bar Association (ABA) Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS), The Law of Payment Bonds (1998) 
  • Author & Speaker, “Civil Motion Practice in Oregon” (1995 & 1993) 
  • Co-Speaker, “Who Certifies the Government Claim: Principal or Surety?” Western States Surety Conference (1994) 
  • Alaska Chapter Author, “Fifty State Construction Lien & Bond Law,” Wiley Law Publications (1992; 1994 Supplement)
  • AV® Preeminent™, Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell 
  • Selected for inclusion in Oregon Super Lawyers (2006-2023 — Business Litigation)
  • Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© (2011-2024 — Commercial Litigation; 2011-2024 — Litigation – Banking and Finance; 2011-2024 — Litigation – Construction)
  • Named the Best Lawyers® 2013 Portland-OR Litigation – Banking & Finance “Lawyer of the Year”  
  • Named as a “Local Litigation Star” by Benchmark Litigation (2015-2022 — General Commercial; Insurance; Professional Liability)


Loren is passionate about giving back through pro bono work and other community service. He’s actively involved in various organizations and committees committed to public service work around education, including a peer mediation project teaching high school kids about resolving disputes in their schools. Loren is a long-time member of Community Vision, nonprofit offering services to assist all people experiencing disability to live, work, and thrive independently. 

Loren has been a member of the ABA TIPS Law in Public Service Committee for over 25 years. Through the committee, Loren has worked on numerous national projects including assisting victims of domestic violence, hunger relief, and animal abuse. He’s currently working on a national financial literacy project the goal of which is to empower underserved communities.

But that’s not the only kind of service Loren has done over the years. He grew up in a small town in the Catskills in New York and worked at the resorts and hotels as a waiter where a lot of entertainers got their start. But instead of going the Hollywood route, he met a lot of attorneys who piqued his interest in pursuing law school. As Loren likes to say, he learned to be a trial lawyer and communicate with juries and witnesses through his work in the Catskills. The rest, as they say, is history.

For recreation, Loren enjoys cycling, golfing, camping, hiking, gardening, and listening to rock music from the ’70s and ’80s.

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