Excess coverage: What checks and balances are in place for trust accounts?
The following are some of the questions you may want to ask yourself to help assess whether or not you should secure additional insurance coverage limits.
When reviewing these questions and assessing your exposure, remember to factor in both potential defence costs and interest payments, as well as actual damages. Depending on how long it takes to discover an error and resolve the claim, and the impact of costs, the value of the claim could be inflated by 50 to 100 per cent, or more.
Consider the law practices of others, including those of your associates, co-tenants, and others with whom you may share space or resources. Also consider subcontracted or supervisory counsel, any previous or co-counsel on files, ‘of counsel’ and backup counsel for your practice, as well as those who are or have been otherwise affiliated with your practice or services.
- Do my present or former firms maintain large trust accounts or trust accounts with lots of activity?
- Have they had careful controls in place throughout governing the activities in these accounts? Are the trust accounts overseen by more than one lawyer? Are two signatures required for each
cheque or withdrawal?
Be alert to your insurance needs and take action to control your personal exposure. For more information on the LAWPRO Excess Insurance program, contact LAWPRO Customer Service at (416) 598-5899 or 1-800-410-1013 and request a no-obligation premium estimate for your firm. After reviewing the premium estimate you can now apply on-line at the secure section of our website (MY LAWPRO at www.lawpro.ca).