Elsa J. Schmidt

Elsa J. Schmidt
Special Counsel

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Elsa J. Schmidt
Special Counsel

Outside of KSLN, Elsa’s interests include travel planning, piano, yoga nidra, live music, and French cuisine. She loves to cook elaborate dinners for large groups of family and friends, or just to be at home in the woods with her husband, Tom, and their cat, Gozer.



Ms. Schmidt’s practice involves New York insurance coverage law and coverage litigation in state and federal courts, including first-party, third-party, occurrence-based, and claims-made coverages, with a focus on CGL coverage for construction-related bodily injury and property damage claims, environmental liability coverage, and issues involving risk transfer and priority of coverage among multiple policies.  Prior to joining KSLN in 2010, Elsa concentrated her practice on complex environmental and corporate litigation under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) and its state analogues in New York and New Jersey, and related claims arising under the Bankruptcy Code and the New York Debtor and Creditor Law. While her office is located at KSLN’s Buffalo headquarters, Ms. Schmidt primarily practices in the New York metropolitan area.



  • B.A., Philosophy, State University of New York at Potsdam
  • B.M., Music Theory/History, State University of New York at Potsdam, Crane School of Music.
  • J.D., State University of New York, University at Buffalo Law School



  • New York SuperLawyers: Rising Stars, 2016-2017
  • Speaker, New York State Bar Association 2012 Law School for Insurance Professionals, “Update: Developments Regarding Notice, Disclaimers, Right to Independent Counsel, and Direct Actions.”
  • Coauthor, “Natural Resource Damages (NRD) Litigation under CERCLA,”
    Bar Association of Erie County, Environmental Law Committee
    CLE Seminar, 2009



  • Past President, Board of Trustees, Community Music School of Buffalo



  • New York State
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court, Northern District of New York
  • United States District Court, Southern District of New York
  • United States District Court, Western District of New York