Professional Liability

Professionals today are increasingly at risk for claims of liability for negligence, breach of contract and regulatory violations. Barton Gilman attorneys are there to help them contest these allegations. Our professional liability practice regularly represents medical professionals, accountants, appraisers, attorneys, directors and officers, insurance brokers and real estate brokers and agencies in a wide variety of complex professional liability claims.

Our approach to counseling business professionals enables us to provide sophisticated legal advice to our clients. We quickly assess our clients’ business operations, and provide tailored risk management advice regarding their businesses and professions with an eye toward litigation avoidance in the future. We pay keen attention to details. Each client’s situation is unique and we have the depth of experience to adapt and shape our advice accordingly.

Should litigation be unavoidable, Barton Gilman attorneys are skilled and savvy litigators. We have years of courtroom success under our belts in cases involving professional liability.

Accountant Liability

Barton Gilman handles a wide variety of professional liability cases involving accountants and financial professionals. Our active practice representing accountants is aligned with the increase in the number and complexity of challenges they face in an era of heightened regulatory scrutiny. We also provide counsel to accountants who have been served with subpoenas to appear before grand juries. We have successfully defended clients against claims arising from:

  • Audits, reviews and compilations
  • Tax preparation services
  • Forensic fraud investigations
  • Shareholder disputes
  • Trustee obligations
  • Disputes involving wealth management services
  • Business advisory services
  • Breach of fiduciary duty
  • Fraud
  • Breach of contract allegations

We have a long track record of successful representations of accountants. Some notable successes include:

  • Persuading a Massachusetts Business Litigation Session judge to dismiss a consumer protection claim against an accounting firm early in the case before discovery had taken place
  • Dismissal of conspiracy and other claims against an accounting firm related to its corporate client’s shareholder dispute
  • Dismissal of claim against auditor alleging a failure to detect fraud
  • Dismissal of a negligence and breach of contract claims against an accountant for tax preparation services and advice
  • Summary judgment dismissing various claims against an accounting firm related to its forensic investigation of fraud
  • Dismissal of claims against an accountant appointed as receiver in a case alleging negligent administration of the financial assets of a marital estate
  • Dismissal of an investment advisor client from a nationwide class action involving allegations of late trading in mutual funds

Medical Professional Liability

Medical professional liability defense has long been a backbone of Barton Gilman’s trial practice. Our lawyers have a distinguished track record of successfully defending virtually all types of medical professional liability cases, many of which have involved potentially huge liability for catastrophic injuries. Our string of victories has established us as a preeminent force in this practice area in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and other states.

We have obtained notable jury verdicts finding no liability for essentially every type of medical professional in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and other states. We believe our success in this area is due, in part, to the effective work we put in at the outset of cases. We recognize the importance of early and thorough case evaluation. Barton Gilman attorneys can tap into a wide network of distinguished experts throughout the medical profession to provide timely analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of each claim.

Barton Gilman attorneys also represent medical professionals and medical institutions facing investigations by state licensing and regulatory authorities, including the Boards of Registration in Medicine and Nursing, the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline, and the Department of Health. We also advise physicians, dentists and hospitals regarding medical device and pharmaceutical product liability claims.

Real Estate and Insurance Brokers Liability

Using a combination of our specialized knowledge in real estate, condominium and land use law, Barton Gilman attorneys help clients reach their business objectives through litigation and trial, as well through alternative dispute resolution (ADR). We routinely represent real estate agents, agencies, appraisers, condominium trustees and trusts in professional liability and D&O claims, as well as before state agencies in board matters.

Our real estate and land use lawyers represent clients throughout Massachusetts, Rhode Island and other states. When the client’s best interest is served through the trial and appellate courts, our litigation team provides vigorous representation. We use that same approach when we seek alternative means of dispute resolution as well, including representing clients at mediation and arbitration. We are extremely proud of our success in helping identify creative, intelligent options short of trial that bring favorable results for our clients.
Barton Gilman’s real estate and land use litigators handle:

  • Negligent appraisal claims
  • Real estate broker agent claims
  • Commercial leasing
  • Condominium law
  • Easements and agreements for land purchase and sale
  • Insurance coverage issues
  • Environmental claims
  • Real estate partition disputes
  • Real estate professional boards of licensure complaints

Our successful representations of real estate clients include:

  • Persuading a jury following a two-week trial to return a verdict in favor of our client in a $1 million commercial lease dispute
  • Obtaining a verdict in Massachusetts Superior Court on behalf of a realtor rejecting a claim alleging breach of contract to purchase real estate
  • Securing a Massachusetts Superior Court verdict for a real estate broker dismissing a lawsuit alleging negligent misrepresentation, fraud and deceit related to the sale of a single-family residence with prior water damage
  • Persuading a jury in Worcester District Court to dismiss a negligence claim against a buyer’s broker related to allegations of failure to disclose information regarding a proposed subdivision construction near the seller’s property
  • Obtaining summary judgment in favor two Rhode Island condominium associations in a case concerning the rights of a unit owner to expand onto common areas
  • Obtaining a defense verdict on behalf of a homeowners’ association where a condominium owner alleged violations of the Master Deed, Massachusetts statutory law on condominiums (M.G.L. c. 183A), and breach of fiduciary duty
  • Persuading state boards of licensure for real estate appraisers to issue findings of no unprofessional conduct
  • Negotiating for a home inspector a favorable low-cost settlement of a case involving allegations of a negligent home inspection
  • Obtaining a de minimus settlement for a real estate broker involving a housing discrimination case

Directors and Officers Liability

Barton Gilman represents directors and officers, including trustees of condominium associations in a variety of cases involving allegations of breaches of fiduciary duty, fraud, breach of contract and discriminatory application of bylaws, rules and regulations. We are knowledgeable of the interplay of bylaws and statutes governing directors and officers, particularly in Massachusetts and Rhode Island and routinely provide risk avoidance advice to our clients regarding statutory compliance.

Attorney Liability

Barton Gilman represents others in the legal profession who are finding themselves increasingly the target of liability claims resulting from a client’s disappointment in the outcome of their legal matter. We defend attorneys who are sued for malpractice, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, ethical violations and other potential claims.

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