What is Cyber Liability & Do I have It?

You know cybersecurity is important. We know you know cyber security is important. It feels like the whole world preaches the importance of cybersecurity because – well – it’s important. But although it’s vital for everyone, it’s even more so for law firms because they handle sensitive client information. We’ve provided articles on how to avoid phone scams, wire transfer fraud, phishing emails and other common technology-related crimes law firms often face. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention...

Ready for a Vacation? Tips for Lawyers Looking to Get Away

We learned all the hobbies, we baked all the breads, we watched all the Netflix – but even with all that, 16 months is a long time to be cooped up. As the world begins to reopen, we’re all eager shake off this cabin fever. For lawyers, however, being away from the office can be a little more complicated than other professions. Whether you’re planning an actual getaway or just taking some time off to unplug and relax, you’ll want...

Don’t Be Someone’s Big Catch: Tips to Avoid Phishing Scams

Scam emails have been around nearly as long as email itself, and unfortunately they’re not likely to go away any time soon – or maybe ever. WHAT EXACTLY IS PHISHING? There are a lot of scams, and phishing is just one type. Phishing is a technique to obtain information like login credentials, credit card numbers or other sensitive data by impersonating a trustworthy business or person. One very common example is a would-be scammer impersonating your financial institution contacting you about...

PHIL’S CORNER: Prior Acts – the 2nd Trigger of Coverage

We have made an effort to make sure policyholders have an understanding of a claims-made policy, on which professional liability is written. The easiest means to do so is to focus on the major differentiations from an occurrence-based policy. What is known as the “first trigger” of coverage in a claims-made form is that a policy must be in effect when the claim is first reported. This makes continuity of coverage critical. If coverage lapses, is discontinued at renewal or...

Court Bonds 101 (and How to Get One)

As most lawyers know, a court bond is a tool to ensure a party will fulfill their responsibilities as ordered by law. Probate attorneys, for example, must often post a bond on behalf of an executor, administrator or conservator of an estate. However, the need for a bond also arises in a wide variety of other matters, such as appeals, injunctions, TROs, replevin actions and more. HISTORY OF SURETY BONDS Although the seemingly modern concept of surety bonds has definitely increased...

Be Ready With a Disaster Plan

If the last year has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. Just in Oklahoma, the past several months have been a wild ride when it comes to weather-related phenomena. Ice storms, snowstorms, late-season tornadoes – we’ve seen it all over the last six months. Plus, our regular tornado season and our roller-coaster spring weather is just around the corner. Disasters aren’t limited to weather-related events, however. Fires, plumbing floods, even burglaries can happen at any time and can...

How LPL Works When You Leave Your Firm

When a lawyer leaves a firm we insure, we typically get questions about what to do with regard to the lawyers professional liability insurance (LPL). For the firm they’re leaving, it can be as simple as completing the supplemental application to remove the lawyer from the existing policy. For the lawyer leaving, however, it can be a little more complicated. Whether you’re changing firms, starting your own firm or getting ready for retirement, OAMIC can help you find the options...

6 Tips for Keeping Your Tech Skills Sharp (and Why You Should)

Lawyers know they have to stay on top of the latest changes in law. There’s a reason it’s ORPC Rule 1.1 – it’s just common sense. Similarly though, lawyers have both ethical and practical reasons to maintain at least a cursory knowledge of current technology. Comment 6 to Rule 1.1 was even amended to provide: [6] To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill, a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice … including the benefits and...

Claims and Errors Trends: What You Should Know

Below is information compiled from OAMIC’s claim data from 2009-2019 regarding common errors and claims. This information was originally prepared as part of the materials for the recent continuing education program Tales From the Trenches, but we've made it available here because everyone in Oklahoma’s legal community can benefit from knowing about claims in our state. FREQUENCY BY AREA OF PRACTICE Similar to national trends, claims from 2009-2019 were highest in plaintiff personal injury/property damage work. This, combined with collections and...

5 Tips for Writing for Nonlawyers

A lot of what lawyers write is for other lawyers – briefs, emails and letters all be intended for someone also in the practice of law. There are times, however, when what you write may be intended for nonlawyers. Whether composing social media posts, writing a blog post or even just creating or updating text on your firm website, below are tips to make your writing as layman friendly as possible. 1. Avoid acronyms and abbreviations. Imagine your physician explaining test...