Managing Your Practice

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Why Prioritize Wellness?

It should come as no surprise that wellness has become a front and center topic in recent years, particularly in the legal profession; but I have a wellness confession to make. In spite of being a risk manager for over 20 years and knowing how devastating various attorney impairments can be, I have been slow [...]

One Reason Why Reminders Never Hurt

I took a call worth sharing because the learning it provides serves as a good reminder about the perils that can arise from a failure to follow through. Here’s the short version of what transpired followed up by what I view as the key takeaways. A long-term client reached out to his attorney to ask [...]

How to Avoid Getting Hoodwinked by Phony Help Desk Contact Information

I have two points to make with this short post and I’m going to start with the one that’s easier to swallow: fake help desks. Here’s the long and short of it. Scammers are buying online ads to push phony technical or customer support help desk phone numbers to the top of search engine results. [...]

Why Effective Client Communication Is all About Details and Documentation

ABA MRPC Rule 1.4 Communication seems clear on its face. Attorneys are to keep clients reasonably informed about the status of their matters as well as to promptly comply with reasonable requests for information. Attorneys are to also explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit all clients to make informed decisions regarding [...]

How to Avoid Ever Thinking “Oh, I Shouldn’t Have Said That”

I recently asked several of our claims attorneys to identify the top habits they felt new lawyers should develop from day one. With one exception, the list they provided covered the habits I expected they would prioritize. And yet, the more I thought about that one exception, the more I realized how spot on they [...]

Burritos or Briefs – It’s About Preparation

What does making and freezing 30 breakfast burritos have in common with trial? Last weekend, as I found myself standing in the kitchen, elbows deep in scrambled eggs,  bacon, and tortillas, my mind wandered to a topic that I thought might be a fit for this blog — proper preparation and being ready for anything. [...]

ALPS In Brief – Episode 35: How to Assess Risk to Your Firm? Assess yourself!

ALPS Risk Manager Mark Bassingthwaighte sits down with Matt Sims, co-founder of Standpoint Decision Support Inc. to discuss risk assessment and some new technology that is helping lawyers maximize billable hours, save time, and reduce risks to their practice. Transcript:   MARK BASSINGTHWAIGHTE: Good morning. It is a beautiful day here in Big Sky Country. [...]

Thoughts on Avoiding Wire Transfer Scams

In the last couple of years, I have seen several instances where an attorney receives an email from a hacker pretending to be opposing counsel providing wiring instructions. Assuming the email is legitimate, the attorney authorizes the wire transfer. Usually within a few days, opposing counsel will ask where the money is and the fraud [...]

How Failing to Plan for One’s Retirement Can Become A De Facto Plan to Fail

In light of my 60th birthday celebration soon becoming a memory, my wife and I have been spending a fair amount of time of late reviewing our investments, finalizing our estate plan, and discussing various options should our life together ever take some unanticipated turns. We’re doing this because we recognize that a job loss, [...]