For Immediate Release                                                                                                        January 3, 2019

The Patterson Law Firm announced today that it had petitioned the Illinois Supreme Court Rules Committee to require all practicing Illinois lawyers to carry minimum levels of malpractice insurance. 

“Such a rule was adopted in Idaho and a similar provision exists in Oregon,” said Tom Patterson, the Manager of the Firm, “and if we are going to require a driver of an automobile to carry insurance while he or she travels to the grocery store, it only makes sense to have lawyers who hold their clients’ lives, liberty, or property in their hands to be similarly responsible.”

A Whitepaper submitted by the Firm points out that malpractice insurance benefits the lawyers, too, by safeguarding their personal assets from loss due to their negligence, but some lawyers reported to the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission that they forego insurance because their assets are already shielded from judgments from aggrieved clients.  The Firm says that this doesn’t serve the public interest.

Jefferey Ogden Katz, the Firm’s chair of its legal malpractice litigation and counseling practice, noted that no client should be left without a remedy when his or her lawyer has breached the standard of care. “I get requests every week from someone who says that their lawyer committed malpractice.  If the lawyer lacks insurance, however, I generally advise them not to file litigation even if the lawyer’s action has harmed them.”

The letter and the Whitepaper were submitted to the Illinois Supreme Court Rules Committee.

 
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