100 years + of collective legal malpractice experience

What do I need to know before suing a negligent attorney?

by | Jan 25, 2020 | Legal Malpractice |

When you hire an attorney, you expect them to represent your case with fairness, honesty and integrity. But like any other profession, lawyers are also susceptible to mistakes. Whether their missteps were intentional or not, an attorney’s negligence can cost their clients time and money.

If that’s the case, you may consider taking your former attorney to court. While legal malpractice cases can be challenging to win, it is entirely possible and sometimes necessary to pursue these claims.

When do I have grounds to sue my attorney?

While most legal malpractice suits are brought forth due to negligence, others stem from breach of contract or breach of fiduciary duty.

Clients can also sue if the lawyer breaks their confidentiality agreements. Attorneys are required by law to keep the communications between them and their clients private. However, there are certain circumstances where attorneys can legally breach these agreements.

Is it legal malpractice if my lawyer fails to file my paperwork?

Yes. In most cases, this move is considered a form of negligence. To demonstrate that your attorney acted against your best wishes, you must prove that:

  • Their negligence resulted in significant personal harm.
  • Their negligence resulted in significant financial damage.
  • They failed to provide skillful and competent representation.
  • They breached their duty of care by making a substantial mistake.

Can I sue if my lawyer predicted an inaccurate settlement?

A lawyer’s guess of what their client could win in their case does mean they unfairly represented them. However, attorneys must be able to demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the cases they cover and give the most accurate estimates they can. If a lawyer consistently falls below this standard throughout your case, they could be liable for their lack of experience.

You deserve professional and accurate representation

People put trust in their lawyers to give them fair and just legal representation. Luckily, if they fail to meet the legal duty of care they promised to provide you, you have the right to fire them or take them to court.