Succession Planning & Practice Transitions

Succession Planning

A basic succession plan involves having written instructions designating another competent lawyer to temporarily assume the responsibilities of your practice and notify clients in the event that you become disabled or die. Comment [5] to Rule 1.3 (Diligence) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct instructs sole practitioners to have a contingency plan in place as follows:

To prevent neglect of client matters in the event of a sole practitioner’s death or disability, the duty of diligence may require that each sole practitioner prepare a plan, in conformity with applicable rules, that designates another competent lawyer to review client files, notify each client of the lawyer’s death or disability, and determine whether there is a need for immediate protective action. See Illinois Supreme Court Rule 776, Appointment of Receiver in Certain Cases.

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