Special Committee on Lawyer Malpractice Insurance

David D. Hudgins, Chair

ALPS RRG (Attorneys Liability Protection Society Inc., A Risk Retention Group) is the VSB’s endorsed professional liability insurance carrier.  The Special Committee on Lawyer Malpractice Insurance (LMIC) continued its overview of ALPS’s risk management endeavors during FY2015.  

In FY2015, the LMIC met four times:  September 4, 2014, November 18, 2014, February 18, 2015, and May 7, 2015.  At each of those meetings, the LMIC received a report from Chris Newbold, Executive Vice President regarding ALPS overall results and ALPS results in Virginia.  In the first quarter of 2015, ALPS had assets of $103,516,033 million with policyholder surplus of $36,379,902.  The Virginia book had $3.7 million of gross written premium and net written premium of $2.5 million.  Virginia’s net combined ratio for the first quarter was 39.21%, compared to ALPS 91.09%.  Insured law firms were 599 and insured attorneys stood at 1,358.  Claims frequency was 1.55% in Virginia compared to 3.18% for the first quarter for ALPS overall.

ALPS contributed 3 percent of its Virginia gross written premium in calendar year 2015, or $278,615, to support a variety of ALPS risk management activities.  As of the end of the first quarter of 2015, expenses amount to $45,646.89.  Revenue stands at $66,684.29.  The risk management budget supported the following programs:

  • On–Demand Programing:  Currently, 17 programs exist in the Virginia on-demand library.   They range in length from 45 minutes to three hours.   New on-demand programs are added throughout the year. Charges for the on-demand seminars are as follows:  programs for one hour $35 for insureds, $65 for non-insureds; two hour programs $45 for insured, $75 for non-insured; and three hour programs $60 for insureds, and $90 for non-insured.   Course listing can be viewed at: http://alps.inreachce.com/Search?category=a84aa593-3439-46f7-b433-6dff8acfd1f8

Quarterly Result: In Q1, there were 53 VA registrants for on-demand programs, with 49 ALPS insureds and 4 non-insured. 

  • Webinars Conducted:  On February 11, 2015, ALPS conducted a live webinar:  Should I? Best Practices for Client Selection.  The session was advertised for 1 hour of credit and was presented by Mark Bassingthwaighte. The CLE had 51 VA registrants.  Of those, 44 were ALPS insureds ($35 per attendee) and 7 were non-ALPS insureds ($65 per attendee).  On March 24th, ALPS did its first live non-accredited, policy-based webinar: The Risk of Bargain Shopping:  Not All Malpractice Policies are Created Equal. The session was not offered for credit because of length and topic.  The course had 107 VA registrants. Of those, 62 were ALPS insureds ($65 per attendee), and 45 were non-insureds ($95 per). 

Quarterly Result: In Q1, there were 158 VA registrants for webinars, with 106 ALPS insureds and 52 non-insured.

  • Other webinars scheduled: 
    • April 29th & May 6th – Getting Started Solo (2-part series)
    • June 10th – Cyber Liability
    • June 29th – Conflict Checks
  • Fall CLE  Tour:

Logistical and content planning for the 2015 tour is on track.  All venues are booked. Vignette filming is completed and the videos are in hand. 

The 2015 tour schedule is as follows:

14-Sep

        Charlottesville

15-Sep

        Manassas

16-Sep

        Fairfax

17-Sep

        Alexandria

12-Oct

       Roanoke

13-Oct

       Danville

14-Oct

       Richmond

15-Oct

       Hampton

16-Oct

       Chesapeake

  • Local Programs and Events:  

Two local bar risk management presentations took place in Q1, one for the Roanoke City Bar (3/26/2015 with Phil Anderson) and the other for the Frederick Winchester County Bar (3/27/2015 with Bill Porter.  Total attendance between the two events was approximately 55 attorneys.  Recall ALPS offers risk management programming at no cost to local bars as a way of disseminating valuable risk management education through local bar distribution channels.  The program for each event was Top Ten Malpractice Traps. 

Spring Grants Cycle/Local Bars Risk Management Grant Program:  the program had $16,000 at its disposal.  Proposals came in from four organizations, requesting $10,500.  A Prince William County Bar program was funded, as was a program for the Virginia Creditors’ Bar, involving $4,500.  Two proposals from the Roanoke Bar Association were declined, neither of which involved risk management.  $11,500 remains in the grant fund.  There will be another grant cycle in the Fall of 2015.   

Updated: Jul 13, 2015