Landlord-tenant cases in Florida and across the country can lead to serious fallout, both for the people involved and for the lawyers who represent them. When people lose access to their homes, they may bear substantial costs and face difficulties finding a new place to live. This can make poor choices by legal counsel even more concerning. In one case, a Texas attorney has denied claims of legal malpractice filed by a former client who lost a landlord-tenant dispute.
The former client, a paralegal, is representing herself in the case. She claims that the lawyer who represented her was simultaneously involved romantically with opposing counsel representing the landlord, creating a conflict of interest. The lawyer denied the professional malpractice allegations, saying that his former client wanted to harass him and that the claims were false and frivolous. While many legal malpractice claims develop after serious criminal litigation or multi-million-dollar cases, this case emerges from small claims court. The former client claims that her lawyer failed to file important documents and attempted to coerce her into a settlement that would have left her without a place to live. She also claims that the lawyer spoke about his relationship with opposing counsel in order to convince her to take the settlement.
She also claims that he failed to represent her appropriately or perform discovery, saying that he did not read the lease. She says that the lawyer suddenly demanded more money in order to make certain arguments in court and requested a bench trial instead of a hearing before a jury, contrary to her wishes.
While people rely on their attorneys for professional guidance and assistance, some lawyers fail to live up to their professional responsibilities. A legal malpractice attorney may review a case and pursue compensation if a lawyer’s negligence led to a negative outcome.