Markel puts lawsuits from ex-CATCo CEO’s Belisle & Fredricks behind it

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Markel Corporation has reached the point where it can put the two lawsuits from the ex-CEO’s of its Markel CATCo Investment Management unit behind it, having agreed terms to settle or close the cases.

Markel CATCo logoThe insurance and reinsurance firm has reached agreements to settle both complains of wrongful dismissal and withholding of incentive payments, with the Belisle case going to a binding arbitration, while Fredricks case was settled between the two parties.

Anthony Belisle, the former CEO of retrocessional reinsurance investment manager Markel CATCo Investment Management and Alissa Fredricks, the former CEO of its Bermuda operations, had both gone to court claiming wrongful dismissal from Markel CATCo.

Markel CATCo’s owner, insurance and reinsurance firm Markel Corporation, had dismissed the pair after an internal review had discovered what it termed a violation of a company policy relating to an undisclosed personal relationship between Belisle and Fredricks.

Following the discovery it was announced that the pair had left Markel CATCo immediately and new management oversight was put in place by Markel Corporation.

Court cases ensued, with both Belisle and Fredricks claiming wrongful dismissal and saying that unlawful actions, including irregular searches of their mobile phones and personal communications, plus changes to company employment policies, had resulted in their dismissal from the firm, loss of bonuses valued at $77 million and caused reputational damage as well as emotional distress.

The lawsuits saw the pair claiming back such bonus payments and other benefits that they state were due to them.

Now, Markel is putting these cases behind it, having reached an agreement under binding arbitration with Belisle and an out of court agreement with Fredricks that led to her voluntary dismissal of the case. Details of the terms of closure are unavailable.

Closing these lawsuits down is another step in enabling Markel to move on from the difficult situation that began to emerge following the previously announced notification of governmental inquiries into Markel CATCo loss reserving practices in late 2017 and early 2018.

By coming to mutually satisfactory agreements and shuttering the lawsuits, Markel can at least put part of this saga behind it.

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