Know the Risks: Being On Your Client’s Board of Directors

Know the Risks: Being On Your Client’s Board of Directors It can be very gratifying, both personally and monetarily, to be asked to serve on a client’s board of directors. It is also easy to understand why a client might make the request. The attorney may have worked closely with the company’s founders to create the business and will likely have a solid grasp of the company’s aims, the marketplace challenges it faces and its associations with industry partners, vendors,...

Looking at Oklahoma’s Most Common Bar Complaints

The Oklahoma Bar Association publishes Professional Responsibility Commission Annual Report (PDF). It includes disciplinary actions taken by the commission as well as grievances filed by members of the public. As interesting as the first one is, we’ll be exploring the latter. Although a claim of malpractice is very different than a bar grievance, and one doesn’t always correlate to the other, they do share some important traits. First, an unhappy client doesn’t necessarily mean you did anything wrong. However, the...

Claims and Errors Trends: What You Should Know

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 Practice Area Similar to national trends, claims from 2009-2019 were highest in plaintiff personal injury/property damage...

Statute of Limitations and the Oklahoma Governmental Tort Claims Act

Statute of Limitations and the Oklahoma Governmental Tort Claims Act Every year, it seems we have at least one claim that is the failure to provide timely notice under the Oklahoma Governmental Tort Claims Act, 51 O.S. §151 et seq. Usually, we see this problem in the context of a claim against a medical provider, such as an ambulance service or even a hospital. By the time plaintiff’s counsel finds out the defendant is considered a political subdivision under the...

Claims: Not If but When

The thought of a legal malpractice claim is stressful and unnerving. The truth is, however, lawyers should expect two to three claims in their careers, according to the American Bar Association. It’s not usually a matter of “if” it will happen – but “when.” Even if the claim doesn’t have any merit whatsoever, it still requires attention. The sooner we know about a claim, potential claim or incident, the better off you are. Reporting early allows us to immediately begin our claims process, and often enables us to...

RECENT CLAIMS: Wire Transfer Scams

RECENT CLAIMS: Wire Transfer Scams Lately, we’ve had a series of insureds who have called us because they have fallen victim to a wire transfer scam. Read below to learn about the most common scenario we see, what you should look for to prevent becoming a victim, and coverage information. Scenario Attorneys are an easy target for wire transfer scams because they often wire money to or on behalf of their clients. These scams are sophisticated and all those we’ve seen at...

The 4 Most Common Types of Legal Malpractice Errors

The 4 Most Common Types of Legal Malpractice Errors Lawyers make unintentional errors every day – in hard and easy cases, in trials and transactions, in large and small firms, and across many areas of practice. Deadlines, long hours, demands from clients and more contribute to this, and even the most meticulous lawyer is bound to make a mistake at least once in his or her legal career. These law firm errors are not all equal, and can span across...

PHIL’S CORNER: When to Report a Claim

PHIL'S CORNER: When to Report a Claim Phil's Corner is a special column from OAMIC's President & CEO Phil Fraim that is sent in our e-newsletter each month. Has it ever crossed your mind whether you should report a matter that could potentially be the basis of a claim?  You may question the timing and whether there is even a need to report it to OAMIC, since it is uncertain if anything will actually come out of the issue. If you have...

3 Areas of Practice with High-Cost Malpractice Suits

3 Areas of Practice with High-Cost Malpractice Suits Legal malpractice lawsuits are both time consuming and costly for all law firms, but the average costs of malpractice suits can and often do vary based upon the area of law. While some areas of practice experience a high frequency of malpractice lawsuits, others have experienced much higher severity in terms of costs for defense and settlement. The average cost of defense and settlement for a legal malpractice lawsuit in Oklahoma is approximately...