At RumbergerKirk, we have a clear understanding of the depth and importance of everything at stake when suit is brought against practicing professionals. Such claims are brought alleging failure to perform on the part of, financial loss caused by, and error or omission in the service or product sold. We represent individuals as well as the carriers who underwrite their professional liability policies. We also represent clients in licensing and disciplinary matters before administrative agencies and regulatory boards.
We provide counsel to professionals in a variety of industries:
- Lawyers and other legal professionals
- Insurance agents and brokers
- Real estate agents and brokers
- Home inspectors
- Property appraisers
- Title agents
- Doctors and nurses
- Mental health practitioners
- Boards of directors and corporate officers
We represent lawyers and law firms against legal malpractice claims arising from the provision of legal services in litigation and other settings. We defend claims that arise from the representation of parties in civil lawsuits, the negotiation of contracts, the structuring of tax shelters, the filing of bankruptcy claims, the handling of securities transactions, and the preparation of ante-nuptial agreements. We also serve as general counsel for debt collection law firms and we often represent insurance defense attorneys in malpractice cases brought by clients or by their insurance companies.
We have a clear understanding of the depth and importance of all that is at stake when suit is brought against practicing professionals, and we handle these claims vigorously, thoughtfully, efficiently, and in a manner that appropriately preserves our clients’ and their clients’ confidential information.
We represent hospitals, long-term care facilities, medical professional associations, and individual healthcare providers such as doctors, nurses, physical and mental health therapists, and other medical practitioners. We understand the unique operational issues facing healthcare providers, as well as the insurance, regulatory, and litigious climates in which medical professionals must provide patient care. We have a thorough understanding of the applied science of medical diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of illness or injury. Over the years, we have developed specific strategies designed to expose meritless claims and maximize the chances of a successful malpractice defense, including:
- An aggressive approach in the mandatory malpractice presuit investigation.
- The use of specialized and highly accomplished medical experts.
- The creative employment of other or uncommon legal limitations on malpractice claims such as those found in “Good Samaritan” statutes, medical consent laws, birth-related neurological injury compensation acts, and special statutes of limitations or damage caps.
We represent private and public institutions and individuals before agencies like the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings, Florida Board of Medicine, Florida Department of Health, Department of Financial Services and Florida Commission on Ethics in the following areas:
- Disciplinary proceedings
- Statutory and Regulatory
- Rule challenge proceedings
- Compliance audits
- Administrative appeals and reconsiderations
- Administrative reversals
We provide representation at every stage of the bar discipline process. Our attorneys are well-versed in the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, the Alabama Rules of Professional Conduct, the Alabama Rules of Disciplinary Procedure, and the Rules Governing Admission to the Practice of Law in Georgia.
- Respond to inquiries/complaints
- Representation before grievance committees
- Represent attorneys before Referees
- Allegations of the Unlicensed Practice of Law
- Provide ethics opinions on proposed conduct
- Provide expert testimony on questions of legal ethics
Our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to guide clients through every stage of the bar admission process and attorney disciplinary process in Florida, Georgia and Alabama.
We assist clients in providing the detailed answers and explanations expected by the Board of Bar Examiners and bar discipline counsel. Having the assistance of an experienced attorney at this stage often helps clients avoid the mistakes and omissions which may lead to further proceedings before the board or bar. Our attorneys prepare clients for the often grueling and nerve-wracking experience of appearing before a panel of the board or before a referee in bar discipline hearings. Representative services include:
- Review bar application and other documents to ensure the accuracy and completeness
- Prepare clients for every possible question which may arise during a hearing before the board or the bar
- Assist clients to provide concise, accurate, and truthful answers
- Help clients pursue admission to the bar after the filing of Specifications
- Zealous representation to protect our clients’ privilege to practice law
- Represented a title agent in claim involving alleged failure to disclose encroachment on property. Obtained partial summary judgment and case settled.
- Defended title insurance agents and abstractors against claims of negligence, misrepresentation and fraud related to title abstracts performed and title commitments/policies issued.
Represented a construction manager against claims of negligence; violation of Florida Statute 553 and 558.
- Represented an architect before the Department of Business and Professional Regulation and have represented a few realtors in licensing matters.
- Represented a worldwide architectural design firm in a personal injury suit brought against an international airport and the architect for the faulty design of a ladies restroom.
- Represented an architecture firm in a suit brought by a franchise. Plaintiffs alleged that the architecture firm breached the contracts by failing to provide proper design services as agreed, failing to perform services for project permitting as agreed, failing to accomplish services during construction as agreed, and failing to perform timely as agreed. Plaintiffs also allege claims for negligence asserting that architecture firm breached its duties owed to Plaintiffs by “negligently failing to properly and timely provide its architectural services.”
Represented a design company in a suit brought by a developer for breach of contract. The contract was for landscape plans, irrigation plans, and hardscape and lighting plans. Plaintiff claimed the Defendant breached the contract by “failing to produce the improvements in accordance with the terms and conditions of the agreement.” The alleged failures included the deterioration and collapsing of a bridge and entry road improvements.
- Defended a civil engineer against claims of negligence, breach of contract and breach warranty related to the design of a road in a residential subdivisions.
- Obtained appellate opinion in favor of engineer regarding warranty liability for design of subdivision road.
- Represented an engineering firm in a suit brought by an elderly woman for inadequate lighting in a parking lot area of a retirement development. The suit also named the developer, the electrical engineer and construction company and the general contractor.
- Represented an engineering firm in conjunction with a case involving the construction of a hanger at Orlando International Airport. The arbitration proceeding involved five parties including the owner of the project, the engineering firm, general contractor, subcontractor and the architect.
Represented real estate appraisers against claims of negligence, breach of contract, claims of fraud and misrepresentations.
Successfully defended residential home inspector against claims of negligence, misrepresentation and suppression related to home inspection which failed to reveal serious foundation problems.
Represented Insurance Services Office (ISO) against allegations of negligence in the inspections of commercial and rental buildings, which were carried out by inspectors who were either ISO employees, or had been hired by ISO to perform such activities.
- Obtained two defense verdicts in legal malpractice cases. One involving the sale of a business and another that involved the failure to timely file a claim against an estate.
- Represented a prominent criminal defense attorney accused of numerous ethical lapses, including charging excessive fees, missing deadlines, failure to communicate with client, and failure to supervise subordinate attorneys. Case was resolved by referral to The Florida Bar’s diversion program.
- Represented an attorney accused of a conflict of interest for filing an action on behalf of former wife of attorney’s former client against the former client. The former client claimed that our client had confidential information acquired during the representation which was being used against the former client. Case was resolved by the issuance of a letter of admonishment (not a form of discipline) against the attorney.
- Obtained summary judgment in a federal court action asserting violations of the federal and state Debt Collection Practices Act. Case involved allegations against a law firm and its debt collection activities with respect to foreclosure actions.
- Won an appeal in federal district court involving sanctions entered by a federal bankruptcy court against a lawyer. The bankruptcy court was sanctioning the attorney for activities taken with respect to his representation of a creditor in a bankruptcy proceeding.
Represented a commercial broker who brokered the sale of travel agency and was subsequently sued claiming reliance on their statement. Obtained summary judgment on the claims and went to trial on counter claims and won a jury verdict.
Represented brokers and agents in FINRA (previously NASD) arbitrations and lawsuits. The cases have involved numerous products including, annuities, securities, and limited partnerships. Likewise, the litigated issues have included blue sky laws, selling away, securities fraud, suitability, common law claims such as negligence/fraud and rule violations under the regulatory rules.
- Obtained numerous favorable settlements defending accounting malpractice cases through the in pari delicto doctrine. In these cases, the corporation sued the auditors for failure to detect the fraud of its management.
- Served as Florida counsel representing a Big Four accounting firm in which investors brought suit alleging that they were advised improperly and now faced tax penalties as a result of the tax strategies they purchased.