Publications

Articles on Legal Malpractice

Fraudulent concealment keeps legal malpractice defendants on the hook

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2006
LawPulse
Page 578
A tortfeaser who fraudulently conceals a legal malpractice cause of action can be sued even after the statute of repose has run, the supreme court held last month. 

Illinois supremes: legal malpractice plaintiffs can’t recover lost punitives

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2006
LawPulse
Page 458
Successful legal malpractice plaintiffs may not recover punitive damages they would have once but for the defendant lawyers' malpractice, the high court ruled earlier this summer.

Legal malpractice claims are not valid unless plaintiff suffered actual monetary damages

December
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 622
On September 22, 2005, the Illinois Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Illinois Appellate Court, First District.

A jumbo legal malpractice case goes to the high court

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2005
LawPulse
Page 162
All eyes are on the Tri-G legal malpractice case, where the appellate court ruled for the plaintiff to the tune of $2.3 million.

Pure Heart, Commingled Funds

By Karen Erger
April
2005
Column
Page 210
Your funds and your clients' don't mix. Ever.

Avoiding the Cliff-Hanger Ending

By Karen Erger
February
2005
Column
Page 96
Beware: dissolving law firm can end up sans malpractice coverage.

Malpractice Risks for Corporate and Business Lawyers

By David R. Sinn
October
2004
Article
Page 522
A review of tricky conflicts issues and other malpractice landmines for corporate lawyers.

Rule 756 requires mandatory disclosure of malpractice coverage

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2004
LawPulse
Page 390
What the new rule means – and could portend – for Illinois lawyers.

The Alligator in the Toilet: 10 Loss-Prevention Myths Debunked

By Karen Erger
June
2004
Column
Page 319
You've heard about the albino alligators in the sewers of New York, right? And the Nigerian get-rich-quick scheme? And the lawyer who was too good to get sued?

Despite clear running of both the statute of limitations and statute of repose for attorney malpractice action, attorney was equitably estopped from raising issue of statute of repose

May
2004
Illinois Law Update
Page 242
On February 6, 2004, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fifth District, reversed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Madison County granting the defendant attorney's motion to dismiss on grounds of the statute of limitations and statute of repose, and remanded for further proceedings. 

Look Before You Leap: The Dangers of Directorship

By Karen Erger
April
2004
Column
Page 217
Many lawyers who are asked to serve on clients' boards of directors jump at the chance. But there's a dark side to this flattering proposal.

Increasing Your Civility Quotient

By Karen Erger
February
2004
Column
Page 103
Civility isn't just a nice thing; it is a hallmark of professionalism and a key component of malpractice prevention.

Practicin’ to the Oldies: 10 Ways to Avoid Malpractice

By Karen Erger
December
2003
Column
Page 635
These 10 malpractice-prevention golden oldies are just as true today as when we first heard 'em.

Learning to Think Like An Ethical Lawyer

By Karen Erger
October
2003
Column
Page 527
That's right, young lawyer; while you might feel you know little compared to your more senior colleagues, you're fully responsible for properly applying ethical rules.

Avoiding a Coverage Hangover

By Karen Erger
August
2003
Column
Page 415
Shopping for new malpractice insurance? Make sure you don't create a gap in your coverage if and when you switch insurers.

Client Communications 101: Learning to Listen

By Karen Erger
June
2003
Column
Page 313
Not listening to your clients leads to dissatisfaction and, too often, to claims.

Ten Loss-Prevention Tips for Support Staff

By Karen Erger
April
2003
Column
Page 207
Treat your paralegals, administrative assistants, secretaries and other staff with the respect that a valued coworker deserves. And urge them to read and follow these 10 tips, designed especially for the folks on the front lines.

Correspondence from Our Readers

March
2003
Column
Page 106
More on file retention.

The “Problem Lawyer”

By Karen Erger
February
2003
Column
Page 93
The damage that drug, alcohol, or otherwise impaired "problem lawyers" do to your firm lingers long after they leave. Here's how to nip problems in the bud, and maybe salvage a career in the bargain.

File Retention: Preventing Brownfields in Your Storage Room

By Karen Dilibert
December
2002
Column
Page 667
How can you avoid a massive, Superfund-style client-file cleanup down the road? Here are some pointers.

Six-year statute of repose for legal malpractice claims begins to toll after last act of representation

October
2002
Illinois Law Update
Page 512
On August 1, 2002, the Appellate Court of Illinois, Third District, affirmed the decision of the circuit court for the 14th Judicial District, Mercer County, and concluded that the six-year statute of repose for legal malpractice claims, 735 ILCS 5/13-214.3(c).

Ten Easy Things New Lawyers Can Do to Mess up Their Careers

By Karen J. Dilibert
October
2002
Column
Page 557
A career is a terrible thing to waste; but if you insist, here's how to do it.

Taking the Hell Out of LPL

By Karen J. Dilibert
August
2002
Column
Page 431
Do you really know what malpractice coverage you're getting under a "claims made and reported" policy? And what does "full prior acts" mean? Read on and make yourself a more informed consumer of lawyers' professional liability (LPL) insurance.

Ten Questions to Ask Before Taking a Legal-Malpractice Case

By David J. Fish
July
2002
Article
Page 369
Is it worth it to sue another lawyer? Ask these questions before you say ''yes.''

More Bread, Fewer Claims

By Karen J. Dilibert
June
2002
Column
Page 321
Want to increase your chances of collecting fees while sending clients away happy; or at least not fighting mad? Then read on.

Beneficiary’s malpractice action against deceased mother’s attorney for harm not suffered until after death of mother allowed when brought within two years of mother’s death

April
2002
Illinois Law Update
Page 176
On January 25, 2002, the Illinois Supreme Court affirmed the appellate court ruling that an exception to the statute of repose for attorney malpractice, 735 ILCS 5/13-214.3(d).

You Can’t Take It with You (and You Can’t Sell It, Either)

By Karen J. Dilibert
April
2002
Column
Page 213
Given that Illinois sole practitioners can't sell their practices, how can they prepare for death or retirement? This article discusses the problem and outlines a few steps solos can take on behalf of clients and family.

Getting Real-World Advice on Ethical Dilemmas

By Karen J. Dilibert
February
2002
Column
Page 99
Don't let your brainchildren be like the proverbial cobbler's shoeless kids; lawyer, protect your IP rights.

The Mysterious Case of the Missing Client

By Karen J. Dilibert
December
2001
Column
Page 663
That filing deadline looms and you can't find your client; now what do you do?

Mandatory lawyer financial responsibility proposed

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2001
LawPulse
Page 564
A special ISBA committee is recommending that lawyers be required to maintain malpractice insurance or some other form of compensation for malpractice victims.

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