Finance Monthly - Legal Awards 2022

71 Finance Monthly Legal Awards 2022 USA About Wentzelee Botha Ms. Botha is a partner at Brown & Winters and focuses her practice on environmental law and environmental insurance law. Her environmental law practice includes environmental litigation and response to regulatory claims. Her environmental insurance law practice includes insurance archaeology, insurance recovery, and coverage litigation. With her firm, she has represented public entities for approximately 17 years, and her clients include several California ports and cities. Ms. Botha’s environmental law practice includes environmental cost recovery litigation against responsible parties under state and federal law involving components such as contaminated sediment from WWII-era shipyards, boatyards, marinas, landfills, and municipal storm drains. Her scientific background in marine sciences benefits her practice. With her team, she is vital in working with environmental consultants and experts in areas including environmental forensics for source determination of hazardous chemicals, best management practices, sediment and contaminant fate and transport, and geomorphology. In her environmental insurance practice, she successfully procures historical insurance through insurance archaeology for her clients. She obtains coverage under those or other historical policies for legal and administrative claims arising from legacy pollution. She also obtains coverage for other long-tail liabilities, including flooding and sedimentation under public entities’ historical policies. Her experience is extensive in coverage litigation in southern and northern California. She has been instrumental in settling many claims with insurers arising from multi-million-dollar liabilities on behalf of her clients. Her comprehensive expertise in these areas contributed to securing substantial insurance proceeds for the investigation and remediation of pollution at one of the United States’ largest ports. She participated in obtaining favorable trial and other court rulings involving coverage. Such rulings include coverage for regulatory claims where no suit is filed - a big win for policyholders. Others include Identifying a sudden and accidental event at port areas that satisfied the qualified pollution exclusion and where a regulatory agency’s informal communications could be equivalent to an official administrative order. Ms. Botha is admitted to practice in California and before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit, United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, and Southern and Northern District Courts of California. She is a 1999 graduate of California Western School of Law and obtained a B.Sc. undergraduate and B.Sc. Honors postgraduate degree from the University of Port Elizabeth, South Africa, in Biochemistry and Marine Biology. She is fluent in both Afrikaans and English. Firm Profile Brown & Winters is an environmental and environmental insurance law firm representing public entities, including ports, cities, counties, and school districts throughout California. The firm’s senior attorneys pioneered many of the solutions for the public entities in the investigation and remediation of contaminated sites under the oversight of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC), Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) and California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB). For their clients, the firm’s partners have addressed legacy contaminated harbor sediment, soil and groundwater, landfills, stormwater discharges, and dry cleaners for over 30 years. Brown & Winters’ approaches integrate the funding of environmental remediation projects with historical insurance obtained by the firm’s insurance archaeological efforts and expertise. Brown & Winters is a recognized leader in Brownfields Redevelopment and the recipient of several awards for contributing to the revitalization of blighted communities. It also participated in and contributed to drafting related environmental legislation. Partner Brown & Winters Wentzelee Botha Environmental Law Lawyer of the Year USA W: E: T: 760-633 4485, Ext. 106

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