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March 22, 2022

ABA plans in-person lawyer malpractice conference in Austin, Texas, April 6-8

CHICAGO, March 22, 2022 — A three-day legal conference in Austin, Texas, next month hosted by the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Lawyers’ Professional Liability, will explore a variety of ethical and professionalism issues, including the disruption the past two years in the legal profession and its impact on legal liability, malpractice and insurance professionals.

What:               Spring 2022 National Legal Malpractice Conference

When:              Wednesday–Friday, April 6–8

Where:             Austin Marriott Downtown
                             304 E. Cesar Chavez St.
                             Austin, Texas 78701

The opening plenary session, “Civility and Other Ethical Issues in Changing Times,” will be from 8:45–9:45 a.m. CDT on Thursday, April 7 and feature a conversation with three federal judges from different parts of the country. Judges Denny Chin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, New York; Lee H. Rosenthal, chief judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas in Houston; and Sidney Thomas, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, Billings, Montana, will discuss civility, professionalism, working with people of differing views and related legal ethics topics.

Other noteworthy programs include (all times are CDT):

  • “Ransomware Gangs v. Law Firms” — This program focuses on ransomware attacks against law firms and how their insurance may or may not respond. Panelists will also explore the ever-changing methods of ransomware gangs, recovering from attacks and the interaction between the private sector and the federal government.
    Thursday, 10–11 a.m.

  • “From Pinstripes to Orange Jumpsuits: Lawyers’ Criminal Liability” — Lawyers of different backgrounds and firm size have increasingly found themselves in prosecutors’ crosshairs for allegedly aiding and abetting clients’ misconduct and for a range of other business crimes. This panel with deep experience in criminal defense and the law of lawyering will examine the criminal law regime that imperils lawyers today and discuss methods for avoiding the catastrophic risks for lawyers that lurk in criminal law.
    Thursday, 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m.
  • “Settle and Sue: Does this Popular Strategy Fly or Not? Latest from the Front Lines” — The idea of a client suing after settling seems a “second bite,” “sour grapes” and just plain inconsistent with traditional practices. It has also made some courts skeptical of these claims. Nonetheless, they remain, perhaps even more popular than ever. This panel examines what constitutes a “settle and sue” scenario, what passes muster, what are the effective strategies to combat an opportunistic former client and the case law on both sides of the courtroom. 
    Thursday, 3–4:15 p.m.
  • “The Changing Litigation Landscape: Trials and Hearings in 2022 and Beyond” — The past two years have changed how people live, think and communicate, and that change has been both rapid and unexpected. This session will discuss the state of trial and jury research, how juror attitudes have changed and insights for most effectively communicating with judges and juries in today’s evolving times.
    Friday, 9–10:15 a.m.

The full agenda of the meeting is here and a list of speakers is here.

All sessions are open to the media, but reporters are required to register in advance by 5 p.m. EDT Thursday, March 31, and all attendees must provide proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID test within 72 hours of the start of the meeting. For media credentialing and to receive further COVID-related instructions, contact Bill Choyke at [email protected].

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.