A definitive answer to a query asking whether California attorneys are ever removed as bull’s-eye targets for state regulators is short and certain.
And it is this: No, never.
In fact, licensed California lawyers are arguably among the most scrutinized and micro-managed occupational groups in the country. They are subject to rigorous testing/licensing duties and ongoing training requirements, and under the ever-watchful eyes of state regulatory officials concerning myriad compliance matters.
And then there is discipline, which is a writ-large concern for every California attorney, even the most competent and conscientious practitioner.
A recent announcement by the State Bar of California well evidences that, given its sole focus on industry malpractice and the perceived need to tighten up current laws addressing that topic.
The bar spotlights a recent study targeting attorney malpractice and attendant options that, if codified as law, could materially revise existing malpractice enactments. Regulators are currently reaching out to the California public for comment, and will begin considering received input from early next month.
One key regulatory focus urges reconsideration of current law mandating attorney disclosure of non-coverage. Existing legislation requires client notification only when representation exceeds four hours. A new recommendation solicits feedback on a change endorsing non-coverage notification in every instance.
And this paraded thought is even more material and, if adopted, certain to fundamentally alter work realities for California attorneys. The bar is seeking input on the idea of requiring malpractice coverage for every state lawyer (with limited exceptions applicable to government and in-house counsel) as a licensing condition.
California attorneys are routinely subject to withering regulatory scrutiny, with that oversight and close control only expanding over time. Questions or concerns regarding licensure and related matters can understandably arise for many practitioners, and can be directed to a proven license-defense law firm.