Call Us Today For A Free Quote | 866.940.1101
Professionals Insuring Professionals
 

Attorney Malpractice Insurance PolicyA recent article from The Dentons, “You’re Facing a Malpractice Claim; Don’t Make it a Bad Situation Worse”, gives advice on what to do after the mistake has been made.  Every so often we have law firms that actually make things much worse.  Once an issue is known think and consult before you act making sure you do not react.  According to the Article things to remember:

1.       Not Every Mistake is Malpractice—Everyone makes mistakes.  An attorney’s duty to keep clients informed generally includes a duty to self-report material mistakes impacting the representation.  However, there is a fine line between reporting ‘just the facts’ and admitting legal malpractice. The former may help meet an ethical obligation, while the latter may lead to a malpractice claim.  Most Attorney Malpractice Insurance carriers have ‘Hot Lines’ set up to help an attorney with not only ethical obligations but how and what should be disclosed to the client.  The ‘Hot Line’ is generally free and confidential.  You may also want to consider getting your malpractice insurer involved before communicating the mistake to your client.

2.       A Claim May Not Lead to a Lawsuit—Just because a client is upset with your representation does not mean that a lawsuit will commence.  Again this is a good time to get on that ‘Hot Line’ to discuss what to do.

3.       Ignorance is not Bliss—Attorneys that ignore legal-malpractice claims go down a path that can be hard to recover from.  Not reporting to your carrier per the terms of the policy a potential or actual malpractice claim can lead to denial of the claim and worse.  The non-reporting of claims by attorneys give rise to stories of ‘what not to do’.  We actually had a firm wait until they lost the appeal of a mistake to notify the insurance carrier of the mistake.  A couple of years had passed between the mistake and the notification.  Guess what the claim was denied.

4.       Any Resolution May Require Insurer Consent—Most Attorney Malpractice policies do not allow the insured to negotiate a settlement without the insurer’s consent.  Attorneys that do likely will find that the insurer is not bound by the settlement agreement.  And the attorney could jeopardize malpractice coverage.

Finally keep in mind your malpractice policy renewal date.  If you are close to renewal someone in your organization is likely signing or has signed their name attesting to ‘no knowledge of claims’.  Not reporting a known issue at renewal can be viewed a material misrepresentation.  Remember the above referenced ‘Hot Line’ generally does not constitute notification of a claim to the carrier.  A materially misleading renewal application can cause coverage to be declined or a policy being rescinded.

Share |


No Comments


Post a Comment
Name
Required
E-Mail
Required (Not Displayed)
Comment
Required


All comments are moderated and stripped of HTML.
Submission Validation
Required
CAPTCHA
Change the CAPTCHA codeSpeak the CAPTCHA code
 
Enter the Validation Code from above.
NOTICE: This blog and website are made available by the publisher for educational and informational purposes only. It is not be used as a substitute for competent insurance, legal, or tax advice from a licensed professional in your state. By using this blog site you understand that there is no broker client relationship between you and the blog and website publisher.
Blog Archive


View Mobile Version
Quick Contact
Referrals
We love referrals! And thank you even more for your continued business.
Customer Service
Self policy service any time of the day, directly from our website.
Join Our Newsletter
Stay in touch with the latest events, news and offers we have.
From Our Blog From Our Customers
Read More Read More
Stay In Touch With Us Helpful Site Links Read the News
Sign up now to receive new and updates Stay up-to-date with the latest industry, community and agency news through our newscenter. We also provide handy hints on how to save on your insurance.

Read More
We have the expertise to find you the right coverage at the right price 
Powered by Insurance Website Builder