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The Devil is in the Details

The Devil is in the Details: Navigating Policy Limit Demands to Avoid Malpractice Exposure It’s late Friday afternoon before a holiday, and you decide to leave early to get a head start on the long weekend. The office mail delivery is behind schedule and arrives after you leave. In your mail is a lengthy settlement demand letter in a personal injury case for which you have recently been retained by an insurance company to represent its insured. The letter arrived by certified mail. It demands payment of the full $500,000 limit of liability of your client’s insurance policy, in exchange for a release. The letter specifies that the demand will remain open for ten days. Buried on page fifteen of the letter is a requirement that all communications regarding the demand be in writing. You take a much-needed extra day off and return to the office on Tuesday. The demand letter is waiting for you on your desk. You have only done a preliminary analysis of the claim but, based on your initial review, you believe the case likely warrants an early policy limits settlement. The plaintiff’s injuries are clearly significant (as reflected in the partial medical records enclosed with ...
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Client Intake and Proper Client Selection

Are You Ready to Commit to Client Intake and Proper Client Selection? Client intake should never be dismissed as an unimportant but necessary task when taking on a new client. Creating a thorough client intake process is essential in order to establish a strong foundation for an attorney-client relationship – whether the relationship lasts for weeks or years. By investing the necessary time and effort at the outset, attorneys may save time, money and even help to avoid legal malpractice claims. When used appropriately, the client intake process may reveal a stark reality that a prospective client should not become a current client. View the full article from CNA to learn more… Continue Reading… ...
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The Remote-Ready Law Firm: Managing Long-Distance Relationships

The Remote-Ready Law Firm: Managing Long-Distance Relationships Good lawyers have their best suit at the ready, but may just as often don slippers and sweatpants. Seventy-two percent of lawyers telecommute at least some of the time according to the American Bar Association’s latest Profile of the Legal Profession. As legal technology grows more accessible and digital natives become the dominant group in the American workforce, one should only expect this percentage to rise. Co-working spaces, cloud computing and virtual receptionists have allowed some law firms to ditch their offices entirely. Most lawyers, however, seek a middle ground: a practice capable of functioning remotely when convenient or necessary, but still anchored to a physical office. The benefits of creating a remote-capable business are well worth the investment, enabling a firm to maximize productivity when traveling, attract top-level talent, and maintain functionality during a crisis. Minimizing Paper If the firm does not currently have a system for doing so, digitizing client files may be the most burdensome aspect of a remote-work upgrade. Even with a system already in place, ensuring that lawyers can work remotely may require more extensive or consistent document imaging practices. All physical documents that comprise a file should ...
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Best Practices for Law Firms During a Pandemic

Best Practices for Law Firms During a Pandemic The COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt all aspects of everyday life. As the virus spreads throughout the United States and around the globe, the number of those infected will rise, as will the death rate. Governments have issued quarantines and shelter-in-place orders in an effort to combat the pandemic, and, as a result, several businesses, including law firms, have closed offices temporarily and instituted work from home measures for lawyers and support staff. In this challenging environment with circumstances changing on a continuous basis, law firms must remember the fiduciary duties owed to clients and their ethical duties as defined by rules of professional conduct in the relevant jurisdiction. Law firms may limit their exposure to professional liability and other claims by identifying and responding to key issues that may arise during the crisis. Client Communications During these stressful times, clients may require more reassurance from their lawyers than usual, which may lead to an increased need for communication between lawyers and clients. In addition to promptly complying with reasonable requests for information, lawyers must keep clients reasonably informed about the status of their matters. If law firms have closed their physical ...
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Phishing Attacks Use Bar Complaints and HIPAA Audits as Bait

Phishing Attacks Use Bar Complaints and HIPAA Audits as Bait Attorneys have access to sensitive information and large sums of money, and although they are experts in many areas, they are seldom on the cutting edge of new technology. It should come as no surprise, then, that a growing number of email scams are targeting attorneys and other similar professionals. By mirroring an email from a state bar, legal organization, disciplinary board or government entity, these scams take a narrower focus that scatter-shot emails offering a free cruise or a one-in-a-lifetime deal with a Nigerian prince. This brand of phishing uses a victim’s trust (or sometimes fear) of an institution as a way of influencing that person to download a malicious attachment, click on a malicious link, or transmit sensitive information to a third party. While some phishing emails remain easy to detect, others have begun displaying an incredible attention to detail. “Spoofing”, a phishing tactic that involves the technical manipulation of the email header or IP address so that it appears to have been sent from a trusted source, is especially difficult to counteract. The two examples below illustrate the targeted nature of newer phishing attacks and the level ...
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