Bette M. Orr, Partner

Bette Orr’s practice is centered on representing corporate policyholders and asbestos trusts in in mass tort and insurance disputes involving asbestos, silica and environmental contamination. The practice focuses on multiparty negotiation and alternative dispute resolution (ADR). In addition to her representation of such clients in disputes with insurance companies, Bette also advises corporate policyholders in obtaining insurance assets that have been transferred in large-scale corporate restructuring and in determining respective obligations for liabilities among various corporate affiliates. 

Among other clients, she has also been effective in securing insurance proceeds to meet the obligations of bankrupt entities and resulting asbestos trusts. Such matters require an understanding of the interaction between environmental issues, asbestos issues, and plan issues related to insurance assets.

Bette has significant experience negotiating matters involving insolvent insurers.  She has settled complex disputes on behalf of corporate policyholders, asbestos trusts and other entities entitled to coverage against insurers in the U.S. and U.K., through the negotiation of specific payments from the insolvents to her clients.

In addition to representing clients who have claims against insolvent insurers, Bette also serves on creditors’ committees overseeing the distribution of the insolvent insurer’s assets.  In this context, she represents the interest of policyholder creditors in ensuring that the assets of these insolvent insurers are distributed fairly and promptly.

Bette’s pro bono works includes representing clients who have been affected by natural disasters, such as Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Katrina.

Bette is also a principal at Reneo Consulting LLC.

Representative Matters:

  • Represented a multinational auto parts manufacturer in determining the amount available to meet the obligation of the bankrupt estate.
  • Represented a corporation in negotiations involving an insolvent insurer and three other large corporations that were all claiming rights to the same insurance. Bette negotiated among the corporations as well as the insurers.


  • 1989 — J.D., Yale Law School
    • Articles Editor, Yale Law and Policy Review, 1988-89
  • 1974 — B.A., Dunbarton College

Bar Memberships

  • District of Columbia
  • Cherokee Nation

Special Honors

  • Best Lawyers in America, Insurance Law, 2018-2019