The Texas Lawyer reports that the Grievance Oversight Committee, which is appointed by the Texas Supreme Court, recently recommended that the court adopt a rule requiring lawyers who do not carry legal malpractice insurance to disclose their lack of coverage to clients.
This has been a controversial issue for several years in Texas. Personally, I’ve had malpractice insurance since I began practice, so a decision either way won’t affect me. There are interesting arguments both for and against, and I’m sure there will be many voices heard in the next few weeks. Here is the beginning of the article:
In June 2008, the State Bar of Texas board of directors balked at taking a position on whether to require lawyers to disclose whether they have professional liability insurance coverage after a Bar task force that studied the issue voted 6-5 against recommending such a rule. The task force took that vote in May 2008.
But the State Bar may have to take another look at the issue. In its June 1 report to the Supreme Court, the oversight committee recommended that the high court direct the State Bar to implement a rule requiring a lawyer in private practice, when engaged by a client, to inform the client in writing if the lawyer does not have professional liability coverage with limits acceptable to the Bar — for instance, insurance in the amount of at least $100,000 per claim and $300,000 in the aggregate. The committee further recommended that, if an attorney’s insurance lapses or is terminated during the representation, he or she notify the client of that fact.