San Francisco
07 June 2017
Reporter: Mark Dugdale

California's John Finston joins Drinker Biddle


Former deputy commissioner and general counsel for the California Department of Insurance, John Finston, has joined Drinker Biddle & Reath as a partner in the firm’s San Francisco office.

In his role as deputy commissioner and general counsel, Finston supervised the 10 law bureaus advising the commissioner on litigation by and against the department.

He advised the commissioner on major insurance mergers, company insolvencies, guaranty association related matters, and numerous other corporate and insurance regulatory matters, and lead the department's efforts to address regulatory changes necessary to facilitate insurance market changes associated with the developing insurance technology sector.

Finston was also a prominent leader within the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), having chaired the NAIC reinsurance task force, the receivership task force and the qualified jurisdiction working group.

He was a leader in the modernisation of the Credit for Reinsurance Model Law and Regulation and was a key member of the team of state regulators that participated in the negotiation of the covered agreement between the EU and the US.

"John Finston is one of a select number of lawyers in California and in the country who combine deep knowledge of insurance regulatory issues with extensive transactional experience,” said Andrew Kassner, chairman and CEO of Drinker Biddle.

“His understanding of the rapidly changing insurance regulatory landscape and his leadership within the NAIC, not just within the California Department of Insurance, will be a great asset to our clients, and our nationally recognised insurance practice.”

Finston is the second partner to join the insurance regulatory and transactional team within Drinker Biddle’s corporate and securities group in California this year, following the addition of his former colleague Dan Brown in March. Theresa Fitzgerald, formerly of Dentons, has also joined the San Francisco office as counsel.

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