Topic: Professional liability

You’ve Got the Wrong Idea About Our Relationship

The typical complaint against an architect starts with the plaintiff laying out his story of what happened, and then listing the laws that the conduct allegedly violated. Architects are familiar with many of them–malpractice, negligence, breach of contract, and the like. But sometimes the complaint alleges that the architect is a “fiduciary” and has breached…

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Professional Ethics: Balancing Obligations

The practice of architecture can be extremely rewarding. But like any profession, the practice of architecture must include attention to a host of various business and legal issues. For many architects, dealing with the myriad of requirements and the complexities they impose can be challenging, and there is a related subject that is often overlooked–ethics.…

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If You Build It, They Will Sue

Architects are increasingly exposed to potential future claims and lawsuits brought by homeowners and the homeowners’ associations years after a condominium project has been completed.  This can occur even when the project developer has overruled the architect’s design decisions or has a limited role in the construction phase of the project. The AIA Trust risk…

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Don’t Shoot Me, I’m Only the Architect

The risk report, Bulletproof Contract Administration: Managing Risk during Construction, addresses documentation procedures that can be advantageous in managing risk during the construction phase. Although considered cumbersome in this often complex phase of services, the suggestions put forth can serve as valuable defense documentation in the event a claims bullet is fired. Beginning with the…

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Hasta la Vista, Baby: Contractor Termination Lawsuits

When the terminator shows up, you must be ready. Termination of the contractor on a project almost always guarantees a lawsuit, and the architect is often among the casualties. The risk report, Contractor Termination Lawsuits: The Architect’s Risks and How to Manage Them, addresses why the architect is often sued when a project goes wrong,…

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Live Long and Prosper

The risk report, BIM Me Up, Scotty: Navigating Risk in Digital Practice, is your chance to get the inside on preemptive risk management for your digital travels. It is an opportunity to gain insight for managing your practice so that you can put up your deflector shields to guard against incursions from the litigious Borgs…

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I’m Responsible for Them?

One of the most important defenses in any professional liability lawsuit is that an architect is not responsible for losses of a person who has no contract with the architect such as a general contractor or sub-contractor on a project. The legal term is that the architect and the third party do not share “privity…

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Designing for the Future: Avoiding Intellectual Property Claims

From 2009 through 2018, almost all intellectual property claims against design professionals in the Victor and CNA program involved copyright issues. Intellectual property, perhaps the most valuable asset for design professionals, includes trademarks, patents, and copyrights. While intellectual property claims in the program were minimal, design professionals should be aware of these risks arising from…

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Professional Liability

Should You Assume a Duty to Defend?

What should you do when your client wants you to assume a duty to defend the client in any claim brought against him or her relating to your professional services? And how do you avoid this unduly burdensome risk? Agreeing to defend another party, generally, an owner or developer against a covered third-party claim, means…

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Business Coverage Professional Liability

Risk Management Webinars

Risk management education is key to managing a successful firm—and utilizing risk management webinars on critical topics is an indispensable approach. The longevity of an organization doesn’t happen by chance. It is the result of careful planning that includes proactive risk management. Client loss prevention and risk management services are an integral part of the…

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