Breach of contract and legal malpractice

When California residents work with an attorney on a case, sometimes they may realize that their contract was breached. It is important to understand what exactly a breach of contract is, as this can help people determine if legal malpractice has occurred.

According to FindLaw, a breach of contract occurs if someone does not accomplish all of the obligations laid out in the contract. This violation can also take place if someone does not perform any of these obligations. While many people may want to begin a lawsuit as soon as they realize their attorney did not fulfill the terms of their contract, this step may not always be necessary. Some people may able to work with a mediator to resolve the problem.  

There are usually two types of contract breaches. The University of New Mexico says that these are minor breaches and material breaches. If an attorney commits a minor breach of contract, this means that he or she achieved a favorable outcome for his or her client but still broke part of the contract. This attorney may not have performed all of the research he or she said would be necessary or may not have submitted certain pieces of evidence which a client considered key to the case. If someone commits a material breach of contract, then the client received an unfavorable outcome because the attorney did not take all of the steps agreed on in the contract. An attorney may have failed to submit evidence, for example, and lost the case because this evidence was not considered.

Some people may think that any breach of contract is legal malpractice. This may not always be the case, though. When people say that a contract has been breached, there are several factors that need to be taken into account. People need to consider whether the contract was modified at any point, as this might mean the attorney did not need to perform a certain duty. Additionally, it is important to consider the result of the contract breach.