Professional Liability

Exceptional service doesn’t just happen

Professional Liability

Professionals are responsible for protecting and improving their clients’ (or patients’) most vital interests – from their reputations to their health and well being, and from their finances and investments to their homes and businesses. Haight Brown & Bonesteel understands the complicated roles of professional service providers and has been a leader in the litigation and trial of malpractice claims against professionals for more than thirty five years. Our experience also includes appeals, arbitrations, pre-filing negotiations and administrative and grand jury proceedings and fee disputes.

We take the responsibilities of defending professional malpractice claims seriously and understand that the protection of our clients’ reputations is a crucial consideration. Our goal is to obtain the most favorable conclusion, as quickly and efficiently as possible, so that our clients can refocus attention on their current clients. We approach the defense of any professional in a responsive and collaborative manner, recognizing that our clients possess the necessary expertise to help shape the most effective strategies and tactics. Our experience working with both private firms and all major professional liability insurance underwriters enables us to facilitate the defense and achieve the prompt yet fair resolution of even the most complex and sophisticated cases.

The Professional Liability Practice Group is represented throughout the State of California. Its members have successfully resolved thousands of professional liability claims, including the successful defense of more than one hundred trials involving lawyers, accountants, design professionals, insurance agents and brokers, physicians, veterinarians and real estate brokers. We have been instrumental in developing and shaping this area of law. In 28 reported appellate decisions, the firm has been involved in creating law in areas ranging from the statute of limitations to causation, damages and trial practice. Our attorneys regularly counsel and represent professionals in connection with ethical and professional responsibility matters, including conflicts of interest, client terminations, fee disputes, regulatory agency complaints and partnership agreements and disputes.

In short, Haight is the leading firm with experienced attorneys enjoying long histories of substantive, “hands on” experience and expertise in the litigation and trial of malpractice claims against professionals throughout California.

The Haight Brown & Bonesteel Distinction

  • Practical Experience. The senior members of the Group have practiced exclusively in the professional liability field for more than 25 years and have trial experience in this area.
  • Client Service. Our clients come first. We know the intricacies of the legal, accounting, medical, insurance and real estate industries and stay abreast of each field in collaborative efforts with our clients. We also solicit comments from our clients to stay ahead of their changing needs so that we can constantly improve our level of service.
  • Collaboration with Other Firm Resources. We regularly team with other areas of the firm’s full-featured Risk Management and Insurance Law, Business Solutions and Appellate Law practice groups.

  • Attorney Malpractice
  • Accountants
  • Design Professionals
  • Insurance Brokers & Agents
  • Internet Privacy, Electronic Security and Information Technology
  • Medical & Veterinary Malpractice Claims
  • Real Estate Brokers & Agents
  • Escrow Agents

Our attorneys have successfully resolved, litigated or tried thousands of legal malpractice claims during the past thirty five years. From sole practitioners to the largest law firms, Haight has represented legal professionals in most legal specialties involving all types of underlying actions and transactions. That experience has led us to develop strong relationships with highly regarded experts in all areas of law, and a significant knowledge base in most practice areas. Always responsive to the sensitive and confidential nature of claims against legal professionals, we strive to avoid interfering with the needs of our clients. We recognize our clients’ reputations are critical and adjust our strategies and tactics accordingly. Our attorneys are experts at balancing the resolution of legal malpractice matters as quickly as possible, with the needs, demands and intensity of litigation and trial practice. This successful strategy has made us among the leaders in this field. Our extensive experience permits us to rapidly analyze and respond, seize the initiative, define the key issues and stay ahead of our adversaries. That same experience enables us to counsel clients regarding State Bar issues, conflicts of interest, fee disputes and other aspects of the “business” of the practice of law.

From tax matters to the most complex attestation or business advisory projects, Haight has represented accountants and accounting firms in the defense of malpractice claims arising from all manner of client representation, including audit, review and compilation engagements, personal, corporate and estate tax returns and audits, purchase and sale transactions, loan restructuring, leveraged buyouts, management advisory services and other transactions. We have also represented major accounting firms in the defense of claims which themselves arise from complex commercial litigation matters. This group’s attorneys understand the unique nature of the accountant’s role and relationship with clients, often counseling CPA’s and their firms regarding specialized engagement letters, confidentiality agreements, fee disputes and “disengagement” arrangements. We assist and represent accountants and accounting firms in responding to subpoenas requesting their clients’ files in marital dissolution matters, business litigation and trust and estate matters – often the “first line” of defense in heading off potential litigation.

Our attorneys have represented architects and engineers in a variety of claims, including commercial building and condominium construction defects, heating, ventilation, air conditioning design defects, and recreational facility design defects. Our attorneys have obtained victories in areas as diverse as the adequacy of construction design, the scope of contractual services and materials specification requirements, among the claims most frequently encountered by builders, architects and engineers. Additionally, we have expertise in matters involving site work plans and specifications, fire suppression systems, road design and contract and insurance coverage disputes.

Haight has represented insurance brokers and agents in a wide variety of actions arising from the almost infinite variety of insurance contracts and risk management tools which exist in the market today. Because “coverage” under a particular policy is often at the heart of any negligence claim against brokers and agents, our extensive experience in representing primary, excess and life insurance carriers, as well as claims management organizations, in negligence, fraud and bad faith actions, is invaluable to the defense of such matters.

Haight’s Professional Liability Practice Group attorneys have handled privacy litigation and counseling matters for clients since the advent of the widespread use of personal computers and the internet, including contract issues stemming from Information Technology software and hardware installations, “Y2K” matters, privacy and confidentiality issues arising from non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements, “Electronically Stored Information” discovery disputes and litigation asserting invasion of privacy, emotional distress and related claims arising from disclosures of personal and confidential data. Clients have included corporations, individuals, insurance companies and professional firms.

Our hands-on and personal approach to the representation of medical professionals instills confidence so that our clients can focus on their practice while we investigate and prepare the most strategic defense available. Years of experience combined with constant acquisition of knowledge of the ever changing landscape of the healthcare industry enables Haight’s attorneys to navigate claims efficiently.

Our attorneys are available to provide advice and counsel to healthcare providers in various aspects of the practice of medicine and provision of medical services. We are available for preventative measures and quality improvement efforts, including seminars and presentations to staff, and advice on medical office management (i.e.: HIPAA and ADA compliance). We can assist in pre-litigation investigation and early resolution of claims all the way through trial. Our attorneys aggressively manage every aspect of the case so that opportunities to obtain dismissal or summary adjudication of a matter are capitalized upon.

We proudly represent hospitals, clinics, medical groups, long term care facilities, physicians, midwives, nurses, therapists, acupuncturists, dentists, veterinary doctors and other healthcare providers.

Haight is proud to represent many of the top hospitals in California as well as some of the finest individual healthcare practitioners in the world. Our respect for the services that our clients provide our community shines through in our vigorous representation.

Haight has successfully represented veterinary hospitals and their professionals, recently obtaining a defense verdict in a case arising from claims of malpractice and fraud against an animal hospital and its attending veterinarians.

Our attorneys have represented national and local real estate brokers and agents in both commercial and residential matters involving claims of negligence, non-disclosure, fraud and breach of contract. We have also gained a well-deserved reputation in the areas of lending and mortgage fraud.

We have represented escrow agents in both commercial and residential matters involving claims of negligence, fraud and breach of contract. Our attorneys have, in conjunction with our representation of business, real estate and insurance professionals, gained considerable experience in all aspects of commercial transactions in which escrows play a major role.