It happens to every lawyer in private practice: The attorney is retained by a client and puts time and effort into handling a matter, only to have the client fail to pay the attorney’s fees. In tough economic times, this scenario seems to occur more frequently.
A few years ago, the only considerations might have been the amount owed and whether it was worth the time and effort to file a suit for fees. Today, the analysis goes beyond the time and aggravation. Filing a suit for fees may impact the firm's professional liability insurance coverage, and potentially increase future premiums, even if the attorney succeeds in obtaining a judgment. The easiest way to avoid professional liability insurance pitfalls is to never file a suit for fees. That answer, however, is not always practical.