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Lazare Kaplan International, Inc.

NEW YORK, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Lazare Kaplan International Inc. (Amex: LKI) (the "Company") announced today that, in connection with its efforts to resolve the material uncertainties preventing it from timely filing its periodic reports under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 ("Exchange Act"), the Company filed claims under certain of its insurance policies (the "Insurance Policies"). Discussions of such material uncertainties have been previously disclosed by the Company on its Forms 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on September 1, 2009, September 16, 2009, October 8, 2009 and October 21, 2009.

On January 2, 2010, in connection with such claims, the Company and certain insurers of the Company and underwriters (collectively, the "Underwriters") of the Insurance Policies, entered into an Agreement for Interim Payment (the "Agreement"). Pursuant to the Agreement, the Underwriters agree to pay to the Company, prior to conclusion of their claim investigation, (a) an interim payment of $28 million pursuant to claims made by the Company under the Insurance Policies, and (b) the Company's "sue and labor" costs and expenses. Except with respect to any rights of subrogation, the Underwriters waive and release any right to recover the interim payment, directly or indirectly by any means, from the Company either by way of offset, setoff, recoupment, counterclaim or otherwise. In return, the Company waives all rights at law, equity or otherwise to pursue claims for consequential, extra-contractual or tort-like claims against the Underwriters in their capacity as having subscribed to the Insurance Policies, and agrees to pursue only such indemnity under the Insurance Policies that provably exceeds the interim payment. The Company is continuing to discuss with the Underwriters claims that it believes provably exceed such interim payment. Pursuant to the Agreement, the Underwriters have committed to reach a decision by May 3, 2010 as to whether the Company has coverage under the Insurance Policies with respect to the claims and, if so, the amount of payment for the same.
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