Lawyeringlaw.com Tip of the Month

Tip for February 2010

Avoid Liability for Malpractice by Former Partners

After dissolving your partnership with other lawyers, be sure to remove all indicia of the former partnership.  Under the theory of "partnership by estoppel" or "apparent partnership," if you continue to hold yourself out ass a partnership after the partnership has been dissolved, you may find yourself liable for any later malpractice of your former partners.

Stop using stationery bearing the letterhead of the former firm.  Change the office sign to indicate that you are no longer affiliated with the former partners.  Instruct the receptionist to stop using the name of the former firm.  Tell clients of the dissolution of the partnership.  File substitutions of counsel in cases in which the former partnership had entered its appearance, and make sure your former partners do the same.