The Sandberg Phoenix professional liability team has extensive experience representing accountants, attorneys, architects and engineers, insurance agents and brokers, real estate brokers and a wide range of other professionals. These attorneys believe the best way to avoid a professional liability case is to learn from the past, and they write extensively about previous cases, current issues and relevant topics relating to a very important subject in the Professional Liability Blog.

Rescue Me: Company Not Liable for Worker Injured in “Hot Bin” Explosion

In the recent case of Jentz v. ConAgra Foods, Inc., the Seventh Circuit held a property owner cannot be liable to a contractor invited on the property to redress an unsafe condition when the feared event occurs and causes injury. Jentz concerned an April 27, 2010 explosion at ConAgra’s grain bin in Chester, Illinois. ConAgra…

Sophisticated Clients Still Need Explanations

Attorneys’ clients come in as many varieties as people do – from any origin or background. They also come from any occupation. Sometimes a client’s occupation will not have any impact on the attorney’s communication with the client, such as when an attorney represents a teacher in a divorce (i.e., the attorney would not communicate…

Lewellen v. Franklin: Missouri Supreme Court Holds Statutory Cap on Punitive Damages Unconstitutional

On September 9, 2014, the Missouri Supreme Court unanimously struck down the State’s punitive damage cap in Lewellen v. Franklin, 2014 WL 4425202 (Mo. banc Sept. 9, 2014). The plaintiff in Lewellen was a 77-year-old widow with less than $1,000 of monthly income who contracted to purchase a vehicle with National Auto Sales North’s (“National”)…

Architectural Collaboration (or Not)

No doubt architecture is a difficult field, with much often at risk when things go wrong. In law, if an attorney’s work doesn’t hold up, things only metaphorically collapse. I would no more presume to offer an architect technical advice in his or her field than I would offer it to a surgeon. On the…

Righting the Ship and Stating the Obvious: Good Samaritan Act Applies to Volunteers; No Immunity for Health Care Providers Even If Patient Is Not Billed for Services

Medical personnel providing emergency care, but not billing patient for such care, are not immune from liability under Illinois’ Good Samaritan Act. A Code Blue was called for an intensive care unit patient who had labored breathing and swallowing pain. Hospital’s emergency room physician responded to the Code Blue and attempted to intubate the patient….

CEOs Beware!

On a list of jobs likely to engender little sympathy in the United States today, chief executive officer (CEO) perhaps is up there with trial lawyers and Internal Revenue Service auditors in the category of “most reviled.”  Nonetheless, this blog entry offers a primer for CEOs on how to more effectively watch their backs and…

Borrowing Money from a Client Equals Disaster for Missouri Attorney

The realities of running a business can sometimes interfere with the practice of law. When a lawyer needs funding to keep his or her practice afloat, a tempting source of financing might be a wealthy client with whom the lawyer has developed a relationship over the course of many years and transactions. Borrowing money from…

Getting It (Nearly) All Wrong

Occasionally, you will read about a legal case that is a comedy of errors. In such cases you’re reminded of cartoons where a character has a bucket fall on his head, then trips and steps on a rake, which immediately leaps up and hits him in the face, before stumbling two more steps into a…

A Law Partner’s Alleged Dishonesty, and the Aftermath for Firm Members

Attorneys and other professionals, while aware of the rules of professional conduct, are also aware not all of their colleagues uphold the trust their clients place in them.  Commonly, lawyers form and create partnerships, which present the opportunity for mutual gains but also expose attorneys who uphold the ideals of the profession to the potential…

Policy’s Directive Not to Admit Liability Conflicted with Attorney’s Ethical Obligation to Disclose Mistake to Client

An attorney admitted making a mistake in drafting a client’s will.  In a letter sent to all beneficiaries of a trust, the attorney acknowledged several beneficiaries received less money than they otherwise would have received if the client’s wishes were carried out as intended ($919,900 versus $1,783,800).¹ The attorney had a professional liability insurance policy…

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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.
This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. © 2014 Sandberg Phoenix & von Gontard P.C. All Rights Reserved.

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