IMPORTANT:

LAWYER MALPRACTICE INSURANCE INFORMATION
EFFECTIVE October 1, 2004

           The Illinois Supreme Court recently amended its lawyer registration rule. As part of the annual registration process, lawyers must disclose whether they have malpractice insurance and, if so, the dates of coverage for the policy.   

           Amended Rule 756, effective October 1, 2004, provides as follows:

(e) Disclosure of Malpractice Insurance. As part of registering under this rule, each lawyer shall disclose whether the lawyer has malpractice insurance on the date of the registration, and if so, shall disclose the dates of coverage for the policy. The Administrator may conduct random audits to assure the accuracy of information reported. Each lawyer shall maintain, for a period of seven years from the date the coverage is reported, documentation showing the name of the insurer, the policy number, the amount of coverage and the term of the policy, and shall produce such documentation upon the Administratorís request.  

The 2006 Registration Form will be mailed to every lawyer this upcoming October.  The 2006 Form will include a section where lawyers will be required to answer whether they have malpractice insurance as of the date they submit their registration and, if so, the beginning and ending dates of the policy. The malpractice insurance information must be filed by December 31, 2005.   

            LAWYERS SHOULD NOT SEND INFORMATION ABOUT THEIR MALPRACTICE INSURANCE BEFORE RECEIVING THE 2006 REGISTRATION FORM.  When they get the form, lawyers should send no information beyond what can be provided on the form itself. Under the amended Rule, lawyers must retain for seven years documentation showing the name of the insurer, the policy number, the amount of coverage and the term of the policy.  However, that documentation need be produced only if a specific request is made by the ARDC as part of a future audit of the information reported on the registration form.   

            The ARDC will display on its Web site information as to whether or not a lawyer reported having malpractice insurance at the time of the registration.  No other insurance information will appear, but inquirers will be advised to ask the lawyer if they wish to know more about the malpractice coverage the lawyer carries.