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Does your firm need to consider Excess insurance?
Test your exposure by checking each statement that is true for you or your firm:
- I am unsure of the file practices, procedures, and communications, in-take procedures, documenting retainers, reviewing opinions, docket controls, diary systems, completeness of documentation and file retention of all tenants, associated law practices, co-counsel, back-up or previous counsel I have worked with.
- I am unsure whether the letterhead, office signage, reception and telephone, website, blog, advertisement, and promotional materials, as well as retainers and billing arrangements of my practice and others affiliated with me, consistently and clearly communicate the nature of the relationship of my practice to that of others.
- I regularly or sometimes practise in litigation, real estate, corporate, commercial, tax, securities or patents and trademarks law.
- My past and/or present partners, associates, employees or others for whom I may be held responsible, practise in the above areas.
- I am unsure whether work completed in claims-prone areas of practice has been entrusted to those with the right expertise or under appropriate supervision.
- Our firm maintains large trust accounts or trust accounts with a lot of activity.
- Our firm regularly or sometimes handles major financial transactions or represents clients where the stakes are high, such as class action suits, pensions, securities, tax or patents and trademarks.
- We have clients whose wealth has grown substantially since we did work for them.
- My colleagues and I rely on the same research or general or past opinion when we provide opinions to different clients.
- I do not know what insurance my former firm(s) have to ensure that they continue to maintain excess insurance that may cover me or advise me if they fail to do so.
Understanding your score:
7-10 points: Your exposure to claims that may exceed your primary coverage is very likely significant.
1-6 points: You have potential exposure to large or frequent claims. A careful assessment of your and your firm’s practice is appropriate. Call 1-800-410-1013 to get a more detailed assessment by one of our staff.
0 points: You are at a lower risk of having claims that will go beyond your primary limits. However, claims often arise from the least-expected quarters and Excess insurance could provide you with that peace of mind that comes with knowing you have sufficient liability insurance coverage in place. It is good practice to revisit these questions regularly.