A Penn Law professor has created a system to monitor lawsuits during the pandemic to understand COVID-19’s impact on insurance contracts.
The COVID Coverage Litigation Tracker, created by Penn Law School Professor Tom Baker, collects data on the outcomes of insurance litigation cases filed during the pandemic. According to the CCLT site, it also tracks information on the parties involved and other critical events in the litigation process.
Penn Law reported that the data on the tracker is kept in real-time with a delay of about two weeks.
According to Penn Law, the tracker provides scholars and practitioners of law with insight into how courts are receiving insurance cases during the pandemic. CCLT has identified a disparity in the outcomes of cases in federal versus state courts, Reuters reported.
“What we're finding is that in federal court insurers are winning pretty overwhelmingly at the motion of dismiss stage, whereas in state court, the policyholders are on the whole surviving,” Baker said. “That's the sort of thing that you absolutely couldn't know without our tool.”
The CCLT was developed by Baker at the beginning of the pandemic in cooperation with several partners, including Penn Law School’s Information Technology department and members of Stanford Securities Litigation Analytics, Penn Law reported.
Students from Penn Law have been heavily involved in the development of the tracker and data collection. They have worked in collaboration with students from the Insurance Law Center at the University of Connecticut, which Baker formerly ran.
“It's been very much a group effort with me and the team,” Baker said. “It's really been a kind of collaborative faculty student venture.”
While the primary focus has been insurance cases, Baker said the CCLT and the knowledge it has produced will be useful moving forward for studying other types of litigation as well.