Law Firms

In a busy legal practice operating in challenging business conditions, time is your most valuable asset. Finding the right insurance protection needn’t be time consuming or confusing.

Law firms face a unique set of risks and challenges, and can benefit from the services of a trusted risk management adviser.

Regardless of size and breadth of practice, all law firms operate in challenging and increasingly risky business conditions. The work of legal professionals involves a great deal of responsibility, and with it often comes a high degree of exposure.

What We Do

Our team is composed of specialists with legal industry experience, and expertise designing and implementing insurance coverage, including professional indemnity, for law firms. Whatever your firm practices, and however large or small it is, we can help you meet your risk management challenges. We provide the highest possible standard of service and maintain quality at every point of contact. We excel in identifying and helping your firm understand the specific risks of your practice, while working together toward a shared goal of mitigating exposure in a dynamic and adaptable manner.

Law firms around the world share some common risks, including professional indemnity, human resource challenges, cybersecurity, and property risk.

Across these enterprise risks, our key services include:

Advisory

We discuss your risks and the best insurance solutions to protect your firm, including key objectives and desired outcomes. We agree the insurer selection criteria to drive negotiations.

Data and Analytics

Our vast pool of global data on law firms (including claims) enables us to use an analytical approach to negotiating terms.

Negotiation and Placement

We negotiate directly with a wide range of insurers who underwrite solicitor’s professional indemnity insurance, and other covers, ensuring we are in a strong position to achieve your goals.

Day-to-Day Servicing

All our clients have a dedicated client team to provide support with day-to-day requirements and provide a full consultative service throughout the year.

Risk Management

We provide updates on topical issues. If there is an area of concern, we can work with you to deliver targeted training, selecting topics based upon our knowledge of the profession along with your firm’s requirements.

Claims Advocacy and Management

Our claims advocacy and management team consists of qualified lawyers and technical claims experts who provide advice and support regarding overall claims strategy and individual claims management.

Our expertise

The Legal Practices Group Solicitors Proposal Form

FAQs

Professional indemnity insurance is a form of liability cover, giving you protection in the event of claims by a third party for professional negligence. This will cover things such as design, advice and specifications, and differs from product liability in that it covers claims arising from the provision of professional services rather than the sale of physical products. As well as negligence, claims could include error, unintentional breach of intellectual property rights and loss of documents or data. It covers damages and the legal fees and costs incurred in the defence of a claim.

Professional indemnity cover should be purchased by anyone providing professional advice or services, from traditional professions such as lawyers and architects, to more recently emerged professions like IT and management consultants. Sometimes it will be a requirement to have professional indemnity insurance. This could be the case where you work in a regulated profession, or a minimum level of cover could be stipulated in a contract, for example joint contracts tribunal (JCT) construction contracts.

This depends on a number of factors, including the type of work you do, the risk that someone will take legal action against you, the potential size of a claim, and any requirements stipulated by a contract or professional body. Three times annual fee income is a good starting point, but also considers the worst case scenario and the likelihood of it happening.

You also need to think about how long you need cover for. Professional indemnity insurance is written on a 'claims made' basis, so while it is in force it will cover you for claims made during the policy period rather than just covering the services you provide in that period. As claims can occur long after you provide the service, you should keep cover in place for several years: typically six, although some contracts specify up to twelve.

It is essential to disclose all material information otherwise claims could be declined. Buyers must complete a proposal form, which becomes part of the policy contract. These forms are designed to capture all the relevant information but, if you feel an important part of your professional service has not been disclosed, speak to your insurer or broker. Whoever is completing the form should check with all senior executives that what is on the form is correct to their knowledge.

Consideration should also be given to retroactive cover. When you take out PI cover for the first time you may be able to buy retroactive cover to give protection for future claims that arise from professional services performed prior to the inception of your first policy. If organisations are established and have not bought cover before, they must consider existing exposures and whether they need retroactive cover back to when they started trading. There is also a claims disclosure clause that must be carefully observed. The company must disclose any potential claims, or circumstances that may give rise to a claim, to insurers within a specified timeframe. In some policies this is worded as 'immediately'. In other policies the notification requirement is 'as soon as is practicable', which allows the policyholder a far higher degree of latitude.

Getting it wrong can be hugely expensive. Failing to disclose material information could mean a claim is declined. Likewise, if you do not take out sufficient cover you could find yourself having to meet the additional costs. Organisations also need to think about the damage to their reputation when a claim is made. They need to establish a plan as to how to minimise the damage, and put in place protocols with the insurer to ensure claims are handled in a timely and efficient manner.

Our people

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Michael Morgan

Head of Global Profession, Marsh Specialty

  • United Kingdom

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Stephen Morton

Lawyers Practice Group, Marsh Specialty

  • United Kingdom

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Hilary Battison

Lawyers Practice Group, Marsh Specialty

  • United Kingdom

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Mike Perry

Head of UK Professions, Marsh Specialty

  • United Kingdom