A conflict of interest exists for an attorney “if there is a substantial risk that the lawyer’s representation of the client would be materially and adversely affected by the lawyer’s own interests or by the lawyer’s duties to another current client, a former client, or a third person.” Understanding how to spot potential conflicts can help reduce the chance that you’ll face a professional complaint or malpractice lawsuit.
As a new attorney or a small practitioner, you may wonder if the protection of professional liability insurance is worth the price. Even if you’re only practicing law part time, are only taking small cases, or are working for a small startup business, your best bet is to carry E&O insurance.
Topics: Lawyers Professional Liability
Having an errors and omissions insurance policy from the very moment you begin practicing law is the best way to protect yourself against professional liability issues throughout your career. Not all policies are the same, however. Before you purchase a policy, ask the following questions.
Not all mistakes that lawyers make rise to the level of “legal malpractice.” In fact, proving legal malpractice is no easy task.
If your malpractice insurance rates are rising even though you haven’t had a claim, several common factors may be involved.
Errors and omissions (E&O) insurance policies cover professionals, including lawyers, for their losses or liabilities if they make a mistake or commit malpractice. Although it can be uncomfortable to think about needing this kind of protection, E&O insurance is a vital part of your overall professional plan.
Starting your own firm is a big step in your legal career. With all the start-up costs and decisions, there may be an impulse to defer purchases that you consider non-essential. Professional liability insurance shouldn't be one of those.
Lawyers can expect to face at least one professional complaint during their careers. When it happens to you, keep your cool. The fact is that vast majority of professional complaints are dismissed.
In hiring you as their attorney, your clients put a great deal of trust in you. They may trust you to protect their assets, their safety, their civil rights, or their liberty. As a result, you have a great responsibility to each of them.
If you’re already covered by legal malpractice insurance, you’re on the right track. Having professional liability insurance in place from the very beginning of your legal practice provides valuable protection for your reputation, your livelihood, and your assets.