When you find yourself in need of legal counsel in Florida, you might automatically assume that the lawyer you talk to carries the appropriate type and level of malpractice insurance. While it would be nice to believe this is true, it is in your best interest to do some checking as there can be situations where policy coverage may not be clear.
As explained by the American Bar Association, if a particular attorney acts as an arbitrator or a mediator, their initial malpractice policy might or might not provide coverage for their services rendered as an arbitrator or mediator. Similarly, if a lawyer is providing legal services free of charge - called pro bono in the legal world - you should ask to confirm if malpractice insurance is carried for this work.
Another important thing to understand is when a lawyer's malpractice insurance policy went into effect and what dates it provides coverage for. For example, most policies include what they refer to as the retro date. This allows an attorney to obtain a new policy but have it cover issues that happened before the policy was create. Ideally, a lawyer should have a policy with a retro date going back to when they first began to practice law.
If you would like to learn more about some of the questions you might want to ask an attorney to ascertain their level of malpractice coverage before you choose to work with them, please feel free to visit the legal error insurance coverage page of our Florida legal malpractice website.