Professional Liability

PRACTICE AREA CONTACTS: Mariana D. Bravo, Paul J. Maloney, Kevin M. Murphy, and Dennis J. Quinn

Carr Maloney’s attorneys can count many decades of experience successfully representing individual attorneys, law firms, physicians, dentists, accountants, directors and officers, real estate agents, insurance brokers, clergy, public officials and entities and others in professional liability claims. We understand the significance of a malpractice claim and its impact on the professional. Our attorneys aggressively represent professionals while remaining sensitive to the discretion and confidentiality that these matters require. In addition to defending the professional once suit has been filed, we counsel clients on ways to avoid such litigation and the pitfalls that confront all professionals in today’s business climate.

Accountant Liability

Carr Maloney is very experienced in representing accountants in professional liability claims in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia. These cases have included allegations of fraud and negligence in the handling of corporate finances, tax-related improprieties, improper estate plan preparation and ERISA claims. In addition, we have extensive experience representing accountants in matters related to audits, reviews and compilations, as well as consulting service engagements.

In addition to defending accountants in malpractice actions, we counsel and represent accountants called to testify in other proceedings. For example, we regularly represent accountants who have been subpoenaed to testify at deposition in matters to which they are not parties, but where they have rendered professional advice to the parties. In addition, we have represented accountants called to testify before Congress, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Justice and various administrative agencies.

We stay abreast of all developments in the accounting field by maintaining current copies of relevant industry guidelines, such as GAAS, GAAP, SAS, and other AICPA Professional Standards. The firm periodically publishes a summary of case law developments in the mid-Atlantic region related to accountant malpractice claims. Contact us to obtain Carr Maloney’s Summary of Accountant Malpractice Case Law for the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia.

Attorney Malpractice

Carr Maloney attorneys have decades of experience representing attorneys and law firms. In addition to representing individual attorneys, we regularly represent firms of all sizes from small and mid-size up to large regional and national firms. Our legal malpractice group has successfully represented clients in a wide range of cases including matters involving securities, fee disputes, patent, copyright, corporate counseling, real estate transactions and closings, trust and estate matters, employment issues, telecommunications, white collar crime, FDCA, FSIA, family law, bankruptcy, underlying legal malpractice cases and personal injury matters.

Unfortunately, some legal malpractice actions are accompanied by ethics complaints to Bar Counsel. We have a great deal of experience defending practitioners in grievance actions filed with Bar Counsel. More importantly, we understand the sensitive nature and impact of these complaints on attorneys and their firms, as well as the inter-relation between legal malpractice actions and Bar proceedings. Understanding the level of our clients’ sophistication, our Members handle most of the substantive work in the majority of our legal malpractice cases. Our clients benefit from the firm’s expertise in several practice areas such as commercial transactions, business law, general liability, product liability, coverage, intellectual property, health care, ERISA and employment law. Our proficiency in these and other fields enables us to analyze difficult cases in a wide spectrum of substantive areas of law.

Construction Professionals

Carr Maloney has a long history of advising and representing various types of construction professionals, such as architects, engineers, construction managers, contractors and sub-contractors. Our cases have included claims for property damage, fire loss, flooding, contract disputes, delay damages and personal injuries on job sites. We have defended multi-million dollar disputes arising out of catastrophic fires, building collapses and plumbing ruptures. We are well versed in building codes, fire codes and architect and engineering standards and contracts.

Financial Services Professionals

Carr Maloney represents financial planners, business brokers, bankers and stock brokers. In recent years, the number of negligence and breach of contract claims against these professionals has risen dramatically. In similar fashion, churning and commission disputes have also been on the rise. Our decades of experience in professional liability defense and commercial litigation give us a competitive edge in defending our clients against these claims.

Health Care Professionals

The firm has successfully defended hundreds of physicians, dentists, nurses, nursing homes, pharmacists, and other health care professionals. Our attorneys have successfully tried countless medical and health care professional malpractice cases. It is because of our experience and skill in handling these delicate cases that doctors, carriers, health maintenance organizations and nursing home operators regularly retain us. These clients also regularly retain us because our firm has handled claims involving almost every conceivable branch of medicine. We have handled cases concerning neurology, psychiatry, pediatrics, infectious diseases, oncology, rheumatology, radiology, oral surgery, podiatry, orthopedics and cardiology, among many others. Our ability to handle these cases is enhanced by the specialized knowledge of our health care practice group.

Insurance Brokers and Agents

Insurance brokers and agents often face claims that they committed an error or omission while providing services. These “errors and omissions” claims frequently involve allegations that the brokers or agents failed to obtain certain coverage or fraudulently induced insureds to obtain unnecessary coverage. These cases may also include disputes over commissions. We are particularly well equipped to handle these claims because we are well versed in how brokers, agents and insurance markets operate. We also understand and appreciate the complex contractual relationships and unique statutory laws that are involved.

Public Officials and Entities

Over the years, our attorneys have defended states, counties, cities and municipalities in the mid-Atlantic region. We handle all types of claims, often using the specialized knowledge of our employment law, civil rights, complex litigation and appellate practice groups. Examples of the types of claims we handle are wrongful discrimination, hostile work environment, §1981, §1983, hostile work environment, wrongful discharge, assault, excessive force, among others. We are experienced in police cases, especially those involving excessive force claims, and are always conscious of different states’ Law Enforcement Officers Bills of Rights.

Real Estate Professionals

Carr Maloney has successfully defended title agents, escrow agents, title insurers, mortgage brokers and real estate agents against real estate professional liability claims. Many of the cases we handle involve alleged negligence, such as purported failure to disclose; other cases have been disputes over commissions or Truth-in-Lending. As lead counsel for a real estate broker, we obtained a defense verdict against claims of alleged conspiracy and fraudulent concealment in the sale of a business. This case was nationally reported because it focused on the unsettled legal question of to whom a listing, selling or cooperating broker owes a legal duty. We have successfully defended cases regarding alleged fraudulent (“flip”) mortgage schemes, insufficient title searches, improper payments and failure to comply with HUD-1 settlement statements.

Technology Professionals

In today’s technology-based world, technology consultants, designers and programmers have become susceptible to professional liability claims. Carr Maloney is uniquely situated to represent and counsel IT professionals in all areas of litigation and business. For example, we represent technology professionals in all matters relating to website design, website hosting, disputes regarding ownership of source codes and software related claims. Our technology clients benefit from the unique blend of our commercial litigation, intellectual property and professional malpractice experience.

For information regarding publications and seminars by Carr Maloney, see Articles and News & Resources.