Deadline Set for Discovery Phase of Silverstein Case

December 18, 2001

The ongoing battle between Swiss Reinsurance Co. and Larry Silverstein will continue into the New Year.

According to a Reuters story, a New York federal judge has set a deadline of April 30 in relation to the discovery phase of Swiss Reinsurance Co.’s action that is hoping to limit payment to World Trade Center leaseholder Larry Silverstein for the Sept. 11 attacks to $3.55 billion Silverstein is seeking $7.1 billion.

Lawyers on both sides of the case had asked for different deadlines to bring a final solution to the case.

Silverstein’s lawyers had requested that the discovery stage deadline be set for late February and the case be determined by the middle of March, arguing that Silverstein needed to know as soon as possible how much income would be available to begin preparations to rebuild the WTC.

Swiss Re lawyers, meantime, commented that with all the money at stake and the many witnesses to be deposed, the discovery phase of the case should be six months, with a trial set for early 2003.

In setting the deadline he did, U.S. District Judge John Martin Jr. said while there was a lot of money involved, the facts of the case were pretty straightforward. Judge Martin said Swiss Re could motion to increase the deadline if it could demonstrate that more time is necessary.

The final outcome of the case will decide whether hijacked planes that hit the Twin Towers on Sept. 11 represented a single event for insurance purposes, or two.

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