Mollie Werwas is a seasoned litigator who focuses on building relationships with her clients and developing practical strategies that accomplish their goals, both in and out of the courtroom. Her breadth and depth of experience in handling sophisticated matters gives her the skillset to effectively evaluate and defend cases, negotiate resolutions, and provide sound legal advice.
As a litigator, Ms. Werwas has honed her skills in federal and state courts throughout Illinois, including Cook County, as well as downstate venues. Mollie’s practice focuses on complex litigation, including representing long term health care facilities, retail and hospitality enterprises, product suppliers and manufacturers, and nonprofit organizations. She advocates for her clients from the outset of an investigation, through final disposition of a case. Her representative experience includes obtaining summary judgement in premise liability matters, which have been upheld on appeal, negotiating timely and effective resolution of nursing home litigation, and ensuring that her clients are well-positioned in multi-party lawsuits. She also assists her clients in successfully avoiding litigation through enforcement of contractual rights, development of effective risk-management strategies, and transfer of liability through tenders to at-fault parties and insurers. She has worked with experts in many disciplines, from the initial stages of investigating causes and origins of losses and injuries, preserving evidence, and participating in all phases of litigation.
As a coverage attorney, Ms. Werwas is unique in that she brings a litigator’s sensibility to every coverage matter she handles. She has advised both policyholders and insurers, including non-traditional coverage providers and risk retention groups. She has specialized expertise in long-tail claims, including successfully pursuing coverage for her clients where policies are lost. Mollie’s coverage practice includes representing clients at the state and national level. She has advised on matters as varied and complex as allocation among concurrent and consecutive insurers, uninsured motorist claims, business interruption losses, biometric and data breach coverage, and catastrophic property losses. She has counseled clients in drafting manuscript coverage agreements and amendments, tendering matters for defense and indemnification by third-parties, and preparing reservation of rights and denial of coverage letters. Ms. Werwas has also worked with clients in both prosecuting and defending declaratory judgment actions relating to insurance coverage.
Mollie is a frequent speaker and presenter. She has been invited to speak on topics including effective social media investigations, legal perspectives on long term care documentation, policies and procedures, and electronic medical records, cyber liability insurance, coverage under lost-policies, evidence preservation and spoliation, and risk management for child-serving organizations. Ms. Werwas has authored articles for the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel on issues relating to the duty to defend and coverage in construction defect claims, and for the Defense Research Institute (DRI) on lost policies and the defense of nursing homes in response to COVID-19.
Ms. Werwas is also active in organizations that promote the advancement of women in the law. She serves as Board Member for the Chicago Chapter of the Coalition of Women’s Initiatives in Law, an organization that brings together women in law firms, government, and companies of all sizes to advance their professional development and networking needs. She is also an active member of the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois, and the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys’ Women of the ADTA Committee.
- Southern Illinois University School of Law, J.D., 2006, summa cum laude
- Southern Illinois University, B.A., 2003, English, summa cum laude
Admitted to Practice
- United States District Court, Central District of Illinois, 2010
- United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 2006
- Illinois, 2006
- Coalition of Women’s Initiatives in the Law
- International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC)
- Defense Research Institute (DRI)
- Association of Defense Trial Attorneys (ADTA)
- Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel
- Women’s Bar Association of Illinois
- Tafoya-Cruz v. Temperance Beer Company, LLC, 2020 IL App (1st) 190606, 2020 IL App (1Tafoya-Cruz v. Temperance Beer Company, LLC, 2020 IL App (1st) 190606) 190606, 2020 IL App (1Tafoya-Cruz v. Temperance Beer Company, LLC, 2020 IL App (1st) 190606, 2020 IL App (1Tafoya-Cruz v. Temperance Beer Company, LLC, 2020 IL App (1st) 190606) 190606) 190606.
- Center Partners, Ltd. v. Growth Head GP, LLC, 2012 IL 113107 (Ill. 2012).
- Defending Nursing Homes Against Covid-19 Lawsuits, by Mollie E. Werwas, DRI, May 2021
- Evaluating Coverage When Policies Are Lost, by Mollie E. Werwas and Jeanne M. Zeiger, DRI, May 2021
- From Envirodyne and Beyond: The Use of Extrinsic Evidence to Defeat and Create a Duty to Defend in Illinois, by Mollie E. Nolan Werwas, Daniel J. Berkowitz, John D. Hackett, Jaime L. Hull, and Seth D. Lamden, IDC Quarterly, Vol. 25, No. 3, Third Quarter 2015.
- Exclusion of the Occurrence? Examining the Illinois Courts’ Interpretation of “Coverage” in Construction Defect Cases. Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel Quarterly, Vol. 23, No. 4, January, 2014.
- Search for Original Expression: Fan Fiction and the Fair Use Defense, Southern Illinois University Law Journal, Spring 2006, 30 S. Ill. U. L.J. 533.
- A Difference of Opinion: Reconciling the Court’s Decision in Tennessee v. Lane, 541 U.S. 509 (2004), Southern Illinois University Law Journal, Winter 2006, 30 S. Ill. U. L.J. 357.