Attorney Malpractice

News & Analysis as of

The Lawyers' Lawyer Newsletter - Recent Developments in Risk Management - November 2016

Aiding and Abetting the Unauthorized Practice of Law — Conducting a Due Diligence Background Check for Incoming Lawyers and Lateral Hires - The Case: Kimberly Kitchen began working at BMZ Law PC part-time in 2005. She...more

Buyer beware

An important judgment handed down by the High Court considered the liability of both solicitors and estate agents in circumstances where the seller of a property turned out to be an imposter. ...more

Receiver for payday lenders sued by CFPB files malpractice lawsuit

The court-appointed receiver for a group of interrelated companies sued by the CFPB in September 2014 for engaging in allegedly unlawful online payday lending activities has filed a malpractice lawsuit against the law firm...more

State ex rel. Heartland Title Services, Inc. v. The Honorable Kevin D. Harrell

— S.W.3d —, 2016 WL 6090816 (Mo. banc October 18, 2016) In a matter of first impression, the Missouri Supreme Court recently clarified that Missouri’s venue statute must be read to allow venue (referring to the locale...more

Mandatory PI insurance for lawyers - minimum requirements approved

By decree no. 22 September 2016, published in the official gazette on 11 October 2016, the minimum requirements of the mandatory PI insurance for lawyers have been approved. The main minimum requirements are summarized below....more

Trial Court's Error In Underlying Case Was Superseding Cause Of Plaintiffs' Claimed Damages

Whether the trial court erred in the underlying litigation is always an important part of the proximate (or "but for") causation analysis. Stanfield v. Neubaum, 2016 WL 3536865 (Tex. June 24, 2016) is yet another case that...more

A Fool For a Client?

If you think you can fix that mistake, think again. As lawyers, taking matters into our own hands is dangerous and ill-advised. We are all familiar with Abe Lincoln's maxim: “The lawyer who represents himself has a fool...more

Who’s the “Real Client”? Attorney-Client Privilege Between Firm In-House Counsel And Other Firm Lawyers

While attorneys provide legal advice to their clients, they are sometimes the recipients of such advice from their own counsel, including in-house firm counsel. Agreeing with recent decisions by the highest courts of Georgia...more

Ninth Circuit Allows Dispute To Proceed In Court After Arbitration Dismissed For Failure To Pay Deposit

In mid-June, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion which holds that where an arbitration proceeding is dismissed because one side is unable to pay their share of the arbitration, the case may...more

Supreme Court of Nevada Holds That Legal Malpractice Claim Was Impermissibly Assigned

Tower Homes, LLC v. Heaton, ___ P.3d ___, 2016 WL 4273578 (Nev. 2016) - Brief Summary - The Supreme Court of Nevada held that a bankruptcy trustee's stipulation and court's order permitting creditors to pursue the...more

Illinois Court Holds That $6.5 Million Malpractice Claim Barred By Statute of Repose

Terra Foundation for American Art, et al. v. DLA Piper LLP (US), 2016 IL App (1st) 153285 - Brief Summary - Plaintiffs filed a legal malpractice action against defendant law firm that plaintiffs had retained in...more

Did You Search Your Jurors’ Social Media? There Are Rules

If you represented a large corporation or a wealthy individual, wouldn’t you want to know if your prospective jurors were campaigning for Bernie Sanders on Facebook? Or how about criminal prosecutors who might want to know if...more

The Lawyers' Lawyer Newsletter - Recent Developments in Risk Management - August 2016

Joint Clients — Confidentiality — Right to See Clients' File - New York State Bar Association Committee on Professional Ethics Opinion 1070 (10/9/15) - Risk Management Issue: In a joint client representation, if one...more

Is Refusal To Pay Fees A Way Out Of Arbitration?

The 9th Circuit recently allowed a claimant to proceed in court after her arbitration had been terminated due to her  failure to pay half the arbitration fees. Tillman v. Tillman, __ F.3d __, 2016 WL 3343785 (9th Cir. June...more

Plaintiff Who Could Not Afford to Pay for Arbitration Was Allowed to Pursue Her Malpractice Action in Court

Tillman adv. Rheingold Firm, No. 13-56624, 2016 BL 190432 (9th Cir. June 15, 2016) - Brief Summary - A former client who had agreed to arbitrate disputes with her lawyers, but ultimately could not afford to pay the...more

Make sure your emails don't turn into evidence

Sometimes the first notice of a legal malpractice claim is a demand or a complaint. However, attorneys or law firms often become aware of a claim through threats from the client during the course of a representation or...more

Don't wait for the new year to close old files

Most attorneys and law practices generally understand which clients are no longer clients and which matters should be closed. Although closing files is not complicated, it typically only happens if there is a concentrated...more

ALERT: New York Appellate Court Recognizes In-Firm Privilege

July 7, 2016 David P. Atkins On June 30, 2016, the New York State Appellate Division for the First Department (Manhattan) issued a significant decision on the scope of the so-called in-firm attorney-client privilege....more

The Punishing Effect of Rule 11

Federal courts correct bad litigation behavior, eventually. People take being sued personally, and lawsuits can take an emotional toll on defendants, whether as an individual or as a representative of an employer. Anger...more

Illinois Appellate Court Holds That Legal Malpractice Claim Was Barred by Six-Year Statute of Repose, and Collateral Estoppel...

Prospect Development, LLC, et al v. Donald Kreger and Schiff Hardin, 2016 IL App (1st) 150433 - Brief Summary - Plaintiff sued a lawyer and his law firm for alleged legal malpractice arising out of the collapse of a...more

What Attorneys Can Learn from History’s Largest Data Breach

On April 3, 2016, the public learned that millions of client documents from the Panamanian law firm and corporate services provider Mossack Fonseca & Co. (MF) had made their way to an international organization, the...more

Alert: Law Firms May Have Duty To Warn Clients of Possible Insurance Coverage

A recent decision by a New York State Appellate Court has again reminded law firm risk managers of a possible law firm obligation to clients, especially those recently served with a lawsuit. The Court held that defense...more

Saffer Fee Shifting and Fee Disgorgement - Who is at Risk?

Twenty years ago, in Saffer v. Willoughby, the New Jersey Supreme Court embarked on a new path for New Jersey jurisprudence by allowing a successful plaintiff in a legal malpractice action to recover as consequential damages...more

Texas Supreme Court Holds that Individual Beneficiary Had Standing to Bring a Legal Malpractice Claim Involving a Loan From an...

On May 27, 2016, the Texas Supreme Court held that an individual beneficiary of a self-directed retirement account managed by a corporate trustee had standing to bring legal malpractice claims against a law firm based on...more

New Jersey Expands Fee-Shifting in Legal Malpractice Actions to Include Non-clients

On April 26, 2016, a sharply divided New Jersey Supreme Court held that attorneys may be liable for counsel fees if they are found to have intentionally breached their fiduciary duty to non-clients. In the matter of Innes v....more

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