We explore and analyze current issues and relevant topics to help accountants, attorneys, architects and engineers, insurance agents and real estate brokers avoid a professional liability case.
Whose Side Are You On? Washington Supreme Court Finds Firm That Previously Defended Insurer Can Represent Policyholder in Bad Faith Suit Against Insurer
The Washington Supreme Court held a law firm who had previously represented an insurance company in defending bad faith suits was not disqualified from representing plaintiff policyholders in a bad faith suit involving a fire loss against the same insurer. The Court held the representations were not “substantially related” because they were not factually related and the insurer did not show a “substantial risk” the law firm obtained “confidential factual information” which would “materially advance” the policyholders’ case.
The realities of running a business can sometimes interfere with the practice of law. When a lawyer needs funding to keep his or her practice afloat, a tempting source of financing might be a wealthy client with whom the lawyer has developed a relationship over the course of many years and transactions. Borrowing money from a client, however, is rife with ethical and legal ramifications.
Occasionally, you will read about a legal case that is a comedy of errors. In such cases you’re reminded of cartoons where a character has a bucket fall on his head, then trips and steps on a rake, which immediately leaps up and hits him in the face, before stumbling two more steps into a window and then blindly stepping out of the way of an anvil about to fall on his head.