Legal Profession Services

Featured Publication:

Attys Shouldn't Overlook Obligations To Potential Clients

Sarah Sweeney and Thomas Wilkinson authored an Expert Analysis article in Law360 discussing how The American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility recently issued Formal Opinion 492 and what this means for prospective clients.

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When lawyers and law firms find themselves in the client seat, Cozen O’Connor’s Legal Profession Practice Group, led by reputable and skillful attorneys with invaluable experience in the legal intricacies of law firms and lawyering, provides a one-stop shop to meet their needs. Whether defending a complex legal malpractice suit, navigating a murky ethical obligation, drafting governance documents for a fledgling law firm, or anything in between, our team of experienced attorneys stands ready to assist with the unique and often sensitive issues in-house counsel, outside lawyers, and law firms face.

Our general areas of focus include:

  • legal ethics and professional responsibility conflicts
  • the business of law
  • legal fee challenges
  • risk management
  • cybersecurity
  • legal malpractice defense
  • mediations and arbitrations

Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility Conflicts

Ethics questions can be intricately nuanced and fraught with uncertainty, from age-old ethical questions, to the ethical use of artificial intelligence, to addressing issues related to the burgeoning cannabis industry. Our experienced team of lawyers provides advice and counsel to lawyers and law firms in connection with the full spectrum of ethical issues. We also represent attorneys in disciplinary matters and oppose disqualification motions and/or third-party subpoenas. Additionally, because issues involving conflicts of interest can stymie even the most sophisticated lawyers and law firms, our team includes attorneys whose practice is dedicated to analyzing and helping to resolve conflicts.

The Business of Law

We help our clients navigate the business of law, so that they are free to focus on practicing law for their own clients. Our Legal Profession team includes transactional lawyers who provide practical, timely, and prudent counsel on the full spectrum of transactional issues our clients might face, from the solo practitioner looking to hang her first shingle, to a multinational firm looking to complete a substantial merger, to a firm in the throes of dissolution.

Legal Fee Challenges

Challenges to a lawyer’s fee are increasingly common and often involve a number of issues, primarily involving the duties of professionals, the reasonableness of underlying attorneys’ fees, and the actions of underlying counsel in representing its client. Our attorneys analyze fee disputes, the attendant fee reasonableness issues, and available options to secure resolutions in our clients’ favor. We base our strategies on each matter’s unique facts and on Model Rule 1.5 factors governing the fees and transactions inherent to client-lawyer relationships. As proven trial lawyers who have spent years refining our litigation prowess, we are more than prepared to take a fee dispute to court when necessary.

Risk Management

Lawyers and law firms are beset with risk on many fronts. Whether you need help navigating the quagmire that insurance coverage can present, handling a sensitive situation with a firm lawyer that places the firm at risk, or anything in between, Cozen O’Connor can help.

Cybersecurity

As frequent targets of hackers, it is crucial for law firms to ensure that their cybersecurity is airtight. To meet this need, Cozen O’Connor offers cybersecurity consulting services through our affiliate, Cozen O’Connor Cybersecurity Services, LLC (COSEC).

Legal Malpractice Defense

Our team has decades of experience defending legal malpractice claims of all kinds. And unlike legal malpractice boutiques, we have direct access to the collective substantive knowledge of a full-service law firm. We understand that successfully defending a malpractice claim requires mastery of the law of malpractice and substantive understanding of the law governing the predicate matter. We bring both to the table for our clients.

Mediations and Arbitrations

Our experienced team of lawyers includes seasoned attorneys who serve as arbitrators and mediators across the country. We made our name as a trial firm with litigators trained to see both sides of any argument, and we bring this skill to bear in our role as mediators and arbitrators. Similarly, our transactional attorneys are second to none. When these lawyers take on the role of third-party neutral, they bring unparalleled substantive knowledge to bear on the resolutions they broker. Our team is respected for their impartiality, ability to get to the core of the matter quickly, and substantive mastery of the matters before them.

Our Legal Profession Practice Group understands and respects the stakes involved when lawyers need lawyers, and we handle each matter with the sensitivity and finesse required when a lawyer’s or law firm’s reputation and/or ability to practice and prosper is on the line.

 

Publications

Attys Shouldn't Overlook Obligations To Potential Clients

August 18, 2020

Sarah Sweeney and Thomas Wilkinson authored an Expert Analysis article in Law360 discussing how The American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility recently issued Formal Opinion 492 and what this means for prospective clients.

Guidance Issued on Lawyers' Duties Regarding Clients' Criminal Behavior [The Legal Intelligencer]

June 17, 2020

Thomas Wilkinson and Douglas Fox contributed an article to The Legal Intelligencer discussing The American Bar Association’s Model Rule of Professional Conduct 1.2(d) (model rule).

5 Ways To Reduce Post-Pandemic Legal Malpractice Exposure

May 27, 2020

John Johnson contributed an article to Law360 discussing five ways to revisit your risk management strategies to avoid unnecessary exposure and reduce claims against your firm.

Fee Division Between Discharged Counsel and New Counsel in Contingent Fee Cases [The Legal Intelligencer]

April 20, 2020

Sarah Sweeney and Thomas Wilkinson published an article to the Legal Intelligencer discussing when a client terminates, without cause, its legal representation in a contingent fee matter and subsequently retains new counsel from a different firm, the Rules of Professional Conduct related to the division and disbursement of fees impose certain requirements on the successor attorney.

Ethical Issues with Remote Work During COVID-19 [Alert]

March 30, 2020

Bill Gericke and Deb Winokur discuss lawyers and law firm's ethical obligations when working remotely and outsourcing work.

Ethical Implications When Acting as Local Counsel [Delaware Business Court Insider]

March 11, 2020

Thomas Wilkinson and William Gericke contributed an article to Delaware Business Court Insider discussing important details when acting as local counsel.

In The News

Lawyer Sues Penn. Ethics Authorities Over Anti-Bias Rule (1)

August 07, 2020

Tom Wilkinson was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article which discusses how a Pennsylvania lawyer is suing state disciplinary authorities, saying an anti-bias ethics rule scheduled to go into effect in December violates his free speech rights.

ABA Opinion Defends Anti-Harassment Rule Criticized as Too Broad

July 15, 2020

Thomas Wilkinson was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article discussing how the American Bar Association is defending a model anti-harassment ethics rule that’s come under criticism as an overbroad regulation of attorneys’ speech.

Pa. High Court Issues New Discipline Rule Against 'Bias or Prejudice' in the Practice of Law

June 11, 2020

Thomas Wilkinson was featured in The Legal Intelligencer discussing the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's adoption of a new disciplinary rule saying attorneys can face discipline if, during the practice of law, they “knowingly manifest bias or prejudice, or engage in harassment or discrimination, as those terms are defined in applicable federal, state or local statutes or ordinances.”

Tom Wilkinson Named a Pennsylvania Trailblazer by The Legal Intelligencer

November 21, 2019

Tom Wilkinson, a leader of Cozen O’Connor’s Legal Profession Practice Group, was named a Pennsylvania Trailblazer by The Legal Intelligencer in the field of legal ethics and professional responsibility.

Cozen O’Connor Recognized As a Best Law Firm in 24 Practice Areas Nationwide, 106 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2019

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations and peer review from leading attorneys in their field.

64 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Named Pennsylvania Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

May 21, 2019

Super Lawyers has selected 64 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to the 2019 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers and Rising Stars lists.

Contacts

Brian P. Flaherty

Member

bflaherty@cozen.com

(215) 665-4647

Thomas G. Wilkinson, Jr.

Member

twilkinson@cozen.com

(215) 665-3737

People

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