Most legal malpractice insurers reported comparable claims frequency in 2022 compared with 2021, but severity increased, says a survey.
Specialty broker Ames & Gough said Thursday in its 13th annual survey that of 10 of the leading insurers that write lawyers professional liability insurance surveyed, six said 2022 claims frequency was similar to 2021’s, while two saw an increase, and two a decrease.
However, legal malpractice claims severity increased, the survey found. “Insurers have been faced with a dual-track dynamic to claims payouts – paying on claims that have been slow to develop over the past 8-10 years as well as claims that have been paying substantial settlements within a year or less of the time of notice,” the report says.
“Social inflation is also contributing to the risk in large claim payouts,” it says.
Among other survey findings, it said trust and estate claims continue to be the leading practice area for malpractice claims.