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2021 was a banner year for LAWPRO outreach and CPD programs. LAWPRO engaged in approximately 110 presentations – setting a new record and increasing outreach efforts to solo and small firms and to foreign trained lawyers. Outreach efforts reached lawyers, law clerks and law students.

LAWPRO’s practicePRO program is the well known risk management, claims prevention and law practice management initiative for Ontario lawyers. Its CPDs, precedents, checklists and other resources help insureds take proactive steps to avoid a claim and grow successful and thriving law practices.

Resources providing practical tips, reducing lawyer risks, and keeping the LAWPRO community connected

In 2021, practicePRO continued to provide timely resources to insureds. Popular articles included those summarizing significant changes to the Rules of Civil Procedure, tips for calculating the post COVID-suspension limitation periods, adapting to Ontario’s new contingency fee regime and the top 10 changes to the Planning Act. The practicePRO program added to its Practice Tips Sheets with a new cyber resource, as well as an article on tips to prevent wire fraud. Recognizing the gaps created by lack of in-person meetings, and to encourage lawyers to seek guidance when in doubt, LAWPRO released an Ontario mentoring programs guide, which quickly became a popular resource.

Free video CPD programming:

In 2021, LAWPRO released six new videos. These programs can be viewed for both the LAWPRO Risk Management Credit and Law Society of Ontario professionalism hours. The programs address key pandemic issues facing lawyers and firms, including managing mental health through COVID-19, managing teams remotely, facilitating access to justice in practice, and preventing wire frauds from happening. Thousands of insureds and their staff viewed these programs in 2021.

Avoiding the wire fraud nightmare – what you need to know to protect yourself and your clients

Finding out that money you sent from trust has gone missing is a lawyer’s worst nightmare. Watch our program to learn about the latest wire scams against law firms and their clients and how you can implement steps in your practice to help prevent these and other cyber dangers.

practicePRO claims prevention success stories:

practicePRO’s claims prevention efforts brought peace of mind to insureds, diverted potential claims, and saved time and money.

1. Call Before You Click: In late 2021, LAWPRO’s wire prevention initiative, “Call Before You Click” educated lawyers and law firm staff about new wire fraud efforts targeting law firms. This initiative immediately prevented a nearly $500,000 wire fraud attempt, saving LAWPRO file investigation, defence and potential indemnity costs.

2. Up front prevention saves downstream costs: practicePRO efforts saves potential claims costs and helps insureds avoid having to report a claim to LAWPRO in
several instances:
a) In one case, an insured called out of concern that a party in a litigation matter was going to bring a motion to strike the action for delay, which could add time, cost, and require LAWPRO to defend.
b) In another instance, our early intervention helped ensure that a real estate transaction could close safely without requiring claims to be opened or repair counsel retained.

Most used popular practicePRO resources are listed here for easy free download