This Div is a JS Trigger
Issue 27 | May 2014

LIANSWERS

This newsletter includes information to help lawyers reduce the likelihood of being sued for malpractice. The material presented is not intended to establish, report, or create the standard of care for lawyers. The articles do not represent a complete analysis of the topics presented, and readers should conduct their own appropriate legal research.
REMINDER: REPORT ALL CLAIMS WITHIN THE POLICY YEAR BY JUNE 30, 2014

To ensure that you preserve your policy coverage, you must report a claim (or potential claim) as soon as practicable after learning of a claim or becoming aware of circumstances that might constitute an occurrence or give rise to a claim, however unmeritorious. You must report that claim (or potential claim) within the policy period. This is a condition of your policy. The current policy period ends June 30, 2014. Therefore, if you are currently aware of a claim or a potential claim, even if you believe the claim or potential claim to be completely without merit, you must report by June 30.

Furthermore, you should report to your insurer when:

  • You discover a mistake which has or may have caused the client damage. This is true even if the client has no intention of advancing a claim against you at the time; the client may advance a claim in the future. Early claim reporting allows investigation and possible mitigation of the problem before it becomes worse or more costly.
  • You receive any threat or communication of intention to sue from a client or his or her lawyer. You should not second-guess the client’s intentions and wait for a clearer indication that the client is serious.
  • Your handling of a matter is criticized by a member of the judiciary or in a public document.
  • Another lawyer, on behalf of your former client, requests your file on a particular matter. This action should cause you to be cautious, especially if the former client’s lawyer does not give an explanation or expresses concerns about your handling of the matter.
  • A client expresses dissatisfaction with your handling of a particular matter and there is some indication the client believes he or she has suffered a loss or incurred damages.
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