Author Archives: Brian Biggie

“Trust me, I’m a lawyer”

Attorneys are people too. In the midst of negotiating/litigating on behalf of clients, attorneys also manage their own day-to-day lives. Attorneys sign leases, enter into contracts, negotiate with vendors and otherwise engage in discussions that are personal in nature. It may be tempting for attorneys to seek leverage by boasting their title as "esquire" or to disclose the attorney's affiliation with a particular law firm. But, to do so may trigger legal and ethical implications.

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Avoiding Individual Liability for Corporate Acts

Incorporating a professional practice can help to avoid individual liability when a professional is acting within the course and scope of his employment. For instance, certain states provide statutory immunity to design professionals such as architects and engineers who are acting in a corporate capacity. However, individual immunity from claims may be waived if the professional makes a representation, even inadvertently, in contracts or design plans that could be construed as accepting individual accountability for negligent acts.

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No Merit for Outsiders

Many states have enacted some version of an “affidavit of merit” (AOM) requirement for professional malpractice claims. We've blogged in the past about the significance of affidavit of merit requirements, including the potential advantages from a defense perspective when a plaintiff fails to comply with the applicable state statute. Professionals involved in malpractice suits will want to take note of a recent decision by a New Jersey appeals court, which addressed the state’s affidavit of merit statute and limited affidavits of merit to the same professional field at issue.

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Cyber Lessons from Jennifer Lawrence

As you've no doubt heard, hackers recently accessed dozens of female celebrities’ personal cloud-based storage accounts, releasing hundreds of nude photographs and videos onto the web. Many of the photographs were taken by cell phones, which automatically backed up the files to popular cloud services, such as iCloud and Dropbox. Some suspect that the hackers then employed targeted attacks in which “brute force” programs were used to randomly guess weak passwords for a given username until it found a match. Once inside the celebrities’ cloud accounts, the hackers could access all manner of personal information. This is how many criminals operate today and all professionals should pay attention.

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Don’t Steal Your Competitor’s Website Content

Search engine optimization provides a marketing edge. Would-be clients may be more apt to contact those professionals at the top of the online list. So, some professionals spend considerable resources to maintain a priority position in search results. There are marketing tricks to achieve priority status, and tools to employ. But, professionals must not go too far. Take for example the New Jersey attorneys who allegedly stole a competitor’s website content to generate more hits on their website.

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The Latest Professional Liability Decisions – Goldberg Segalla’s Professional Liability Monthly Now Available

Please click here for the latest edition of  Professional Liability Monthly. Goldberg Segalla’s Professional Liability Monthly provides timely analysis of court decisions from across the country concerning professional liability. Cases are organized by topic, and where available, hyperlinks to the full decisions are included. In addition, we highlight the latest news impacting the professional liability community. If you would like to receive future editions of Professional Liability Monthly directly by email, please contact Brian Biggie at[email protected].…

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Professional Liability Monthly – March Edition is Now Available

Case analysis in this edition of Professional Liability Monthly include:

  • Court Refuses Design Professional’s Bid to Avoid Liability Reliant on Future Inspection or Approvals
  • A Plaintiff’s Complaint Alleging Defamation and Violations of Connecticut’s Unfair Trade Practices Act Is Stricken Under the Absolute Litigation Privilege
  • Pennsylvania Enacts Benevolent-Gesture Bill Into Law
  • Evidence of Informed Consent Inadmissible in Medical Malpractice Case
  • Case of First Impression: Plaintiffs Lack Standing to Bring Malicious Prosecution/Vexatious Litigation Actions Against Attorneys and Attorneys’ Clients
  • Court Finds Theory of Apparent Agency Applicable

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Cases for Professional Liability Monthly – March 2014 Edition

The below cases correspond with the March edition of Professional Liability Monthly and the analysis of each case. Click here to access to the newsletter. Cases are provided courtesy of LexisNexis. Brady v. Urbas Granger Constr. Co. v. G.C. Fire Prot. Sys. Meyers, Harrison & Pia, LLC v. Riella Ntumbanzondo v. Bang Chau Scalise v. Cummings & Lockwood, LLC Schlump v. Pabst Wojeck v. Latimer Point Condo. Ass’n,

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Are Law Firm Advertisements Covered?

All insurance policies are not created equal. Some policies contain exclusions that many professional may not expect. Take for example a recent decision that evaluated whether a law firm’s advertising practices were covered under a D&O policy. In Rob Levine & Associates, Ltd. v. Travelers Casualty, a Rhode Island federal court considered whether conduct relating to Internet and television advertisements was considered “professional services.”

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Special Edition: Professional Liability Monthly Compendium 2013

Click here for this special edition of the Professional Liability Monthly Compendium 2013. We have compiled all the Featured Articles from the past year along with the year’s most popular blog posts.. For your convenience, we have linked each author’s name in the newsletter to their online biographies in the event you would like more information regarding the article or post. We encourage you to share the publication with your colleagues. If others in your organization are interested in receiving the publication, please contact…

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