Lawyer Insurance

David D. Hudgins, Chair

ALPS Property & Casualty Insurance Company is the VSB’s endorsed professional liability insurance carrier.  The Special Committee on Lawyer Insurance (LIC) continued its overview of ALPS’s risk management endeavors and, for the first time, started its oversight of the VSB Members’ Insurance Center’s efforts to help VSB lawyers obtain and manage personal (health, life and disability) insurance.  

The LIC met 4 times in FY2018:

            September 28, 2017    Belle Haven Country Club, Fairfax, VA

            November 30, 2017    VSB office     

            February 15, 2018       Via teleconference      

            May 10, 2018              VSB office, Richmond, VA


VSB Members’ Insurance Center

The VSB Members’ Insurance Center, led by Bob Spicknall, continues to enroll small law firms, often with only one employee, in health insurance.  Since the fall of 2018, it established approximately 120 new groups totaling 226 insureds.  These people now benefit from group health insurance that costs far less than individual health insurance.  Bob reported in late April of 2018 that Virginia Senate Bill No. 672 had passed, which revises the definition of “small employer” for purposes of health insurance to include a self-employed person, effective July 1, 2018.  It is most likely that solo practitioners of all industries, who work 30 hours per week, will become eligible for group health insurance sometime this summer.  Bob cannot overstate the significance of this new law.  The VSB sole practitioner, or group of one, “association” ability was removed by the ACA in 2014.  Effective January 1, 2018 individual coverage became 30-35% more expensive than group coverage.  Many VSB members who do not employ anyone grew frustrated because they could not establish group coverage and had to settle for expensive individual coverage with limited options and limited provider networks.  Bob says it is now likely that these VSB sole practitioners will be eligible for group health insurance this summer. 

ALPS and Lawyer Malpractice Insurance

ALPS operates on a calendar-year basis.  As of December 31, 2017, There were 1,912 Virginia  firms insured by ALPS, out of a total of 7,041 firms, and 3,943 lawyers, out of a total of 15,970 lawyers insured by ALPS.  Gross written premium written in Virginia was $9,831,565; net written premium was $6,606,641.  Net combined ratio in Virginia as of 12/31/2017 was 119.42%; claims frequency was 3.67 in Virginia.  Net combined ratio for ALPS overall was 99.91% as of 12/31/2017 with a claims frequency of 3.66%.

On–Demand Programing

Currently, 15 programs exist in the Virginia on-demand library.   They range in length from 45min to three hours.   New on-demand programs have been 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:

Quarterly Result: In Q1 of 2018, ALPS had 90 VA registrants for on-demand programs, with 70 ALPS insureds and 20 non-insured.

YTD Result: YTD in 2018, ALPS had 90 VA registrants for on-demand programs, with 70 ALPS insureds and 20 non-insured.


Webinar Programming: In Q1 ALPS did two webinars. 


On February 28, 2018, ALPS presented How to Avoid Conflict of Interest Malpractice Missteps. This program was presented by Mark Bassingthwaite.  They had 34 registrants, with 32 insureds and 2 non-insured.


On March 22, 2018, ALPS did its first New Lawyer webinar of the year, The Devil Wears Green: Trust Accounting Basics for New Lawyers. This was presented by Jeannie Dahnk of Glover and Dahnk.  There were 30 registrants, with 11 insureds and 19 non-insured.

Quarterly Result: In Q1, ALPS had 64 VA registrants for Webinars, with 43 ALPS insureds and 19 non-insured. 

YTD Result: YTD, they had 64 VA registrants for Webinars, with 43 ALPS insureds and 19 non-insured. 


Webinars Scheduled: 

In Q2 ALPS will be doing four webinars:

  • Practice Management: Calendaring – April 25, 2018
  • New Lawyer Webinar #2 - The Introverted Lawyer: Authentically Empowered Advocacy – May 9, 2018
  • Say What? An ALPS Ethics and Professionalism Program – June 13, 2018
  • The Bar Report: An ALPS Ethics and Professionalism Program – June 27, 2018

The two June 2018 webinars are a live webinar format using two of the vignettes from the 2017 VA CLE Tour.

ALPS will also be doing a live replay of two previously recorded webinars, Malpractice Avoidance: Common Missteps Lawyers Make on April 18, 2018 and Malpractice Avoidance II: More Common Missteps Lawyers Make on May 23, 2018.  Mark Bassingthwaite will be on hand to answer questions at the end.


Fall CLE  Tour:

Planning for the 2018 Fall Tour is in full swing.  The schedule of events and locations is below.






Charlottesville AM

DoubleTree by Hilton


Fairfax AM

Waterford at Fair Oaks


Fairfax PM

Waterford at Fair Oaks





Virginia Beach PM

Virginia Beach Convention Center


Newport News AM

Marriott At City Center



Chesapeake AM

Chesapeake Conference Center


Roanoke AM

Holiday Inn Tanglewood


Alexandria PM

George Washington Masonic Memorial


Manassas AM

GMU Prince William Campus


Richmond AM

Richmond Convention Center


Richmond PM

Richmond Convention Center


The scripts are done and the vignettes have been filmed.  Jim McCauley and team are working on the answer set currently, and the materials will be finalized by July. Marketing will begin on June 26th.


2018 Risk Management Budget

The approved 2018 risk management budget is as follows:


ALPS 3% contribution:                                              $287,395

Non-ALPS attendee revenue from Fall Tour:            $17,845

Total revenue projection:                                           $305,240

Expenses:                                                                 $305,240

Revenue stands at $17,845 through March 31, 2018, and expenses are $83,429.84.



Updated: Jul 02, 2018