When risk managers audit a law practice for legal malpractice risk, they look first to see if every file contains an executed engagement letter, retainer letter or fee contract. These documents are some of the most reliable indicators of whether a law practice has systems in place to effectively reduce the risks of malpractice claims in a modern-day law practice.

Simply stated, every open matter at a law firm should have either an executed engagement or retainer letter or fee contract. This includes new matters for existing clients or additional clients for existing matters.

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