The Risks Associated with Hiring Temporary Attorneys

The Risks Associated with Hiring Temporary Attorneys

A decade ago, the concept of temporary attorneys was few and far between. However, due to our current economic climate, contracting temporary lawyers to perform intensive tasks originally completed by newer associates has become a norm.  Navigating this new development can be challenging and complex which is why it’s important to verify your Staffing Professional Liability Insurance policy is up to date and effective.  Here are a few key points to follow to help safeguard your agency and steer clear of sticky lawyer situations:

  1. Protecting the Client’s Information: both the hiring firm and the temporary lawyer must take the necessary steps to protect client information by preventing disclosure or misuse of confidential material. In other words, when the contract expires, the attorney is still legally obligated to maintain confidentiality.
  2. Attorney Conflict Liability (No Association)-According to the American Bar Association’s Section of Ethics, if the temporary attorney is only hired for one contract job with no past or ongoing association with the hiring company, has limited access to relevant case information, and has a definitive end date, then the conflict will most likely be handled by the temporary attorney. However, dependent upon the scope of the attorney’s relationship, the hiring firm could potentially assume responsibility.
  3. Attorney Conflict Liability (Association) – The same article states that if the temporary attorney works on multiple projects for the hiring firm, has access to the company’s email and electronic documents, and is listed on the company’s website, then the hiring company would be held liable for the attorney’s conflicts.
  4. Avoiding Ethical Traps- A simple screening of the temporary attorney to verify no conflicts of interests are present is advised. It’s also recommended that you don’t allow the temporary attorney to work from the main server, segregate information unrelated to his or her case, and keep other client’s information secured with a passcode.

World Wide Specialty Programs has developed a deep understanding of the unique risks associated with staffing over the course of their 50 years in the industry. We offer a variety of insurance solutions including Staffing Agency Insurance Policies to manage staffing risk exposure. For more information, contact one of our specialists today at (877) 256-0468.

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