Jennings, Haug & Cunningham is pleased to announce that the firm has added Jennifer Erickson as a partner and Shawdy Banihashemi as an associate, expanding the firm’s insurance defense practice.
Ms. Erickson has more than 20 years of experience representing personal and commercial line insurance carriers in coverage, first party and bad faith matters, as well as representation of insureds in third party tort matters. Through the years, she has gained vast experience representing insurance companies, private businesses and municipalities in a wide range of tort defense litigation.
Her approach involves a unique emphasis on education. Ms. Erickson regularly provides training and education to supervisors and claims adjusters of major insurance companies. Recently, she founded Claims University, which tailors curriculum of training modules focusing on issues facing claims handlers to help them do their jobs better. Ms. Erickson serves as the lead instructor of Claims University and is a frequent CLE presenter for various State Bar organizations.
Ms. Erickson began her legal career as an in-house litigation attorney for a large insurance company. Prior to becoming a lawyer, she provided benefit consulting services to business owners and assisted clients with their life, dental and disability insurance policy needs. She earned her law degree in 1993 from Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law and received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Delaware in 1986.
Ms. Banihashemi’s practice includes general insurance defense litigation and coverage work. She developed her insurance defense experience by handling tort defense litigation and performing pre-trial litigation for complex general liability and construction defect cases. Ms. Banihashemi also has substantial criminal defense experience. She worked as a public defender handling a wide variety of criminal matters, ranging from simple infractions to serious felony charges. As a result of her experience in both the civil and criminal arenas, Ms. Banihashemi possesses a wide range of skills as a trial attorney.
In addition to her active legal practice, Ms. Banihashemi is active in the Arizona State Bar and is an adjunct professor at Arizona Summit Law School. She received her law degree in 2006 from University of Baltimore School of Law and graduated from the University of Maryland with cum laude distinction in 2003.