You place a lot of trust into an attorney when you turn to them for help. If your lawyer underperforms or doesn’t meet your expectations, you could lose faith in them. However, if the case did not go according to plan, it does not automatically mean legal malpractice occurred.
Before taking action against your lawyer, it is imperative that you have evidence to support your claim. Asking yourself these three questions may help you decide if pursuing a malpractice claim is worth it.
Were your lawyers’ actions negligent?
Before judging whether the lawyer was negligent, a valid attorney-client relationship must be established. If this duty exists, you must show evidence that your attorney breached their commitment to you.
If your lawyer made a small mistake, it does not mean you have a malpractice case on your hands. Your attorney’s actions must violate the code of professional conduct, or the duty they owe you. If your lawyer acted according to the America Bar Association’s (ABA) standards, malpractice could be difficult.
Did you suffer a financial loss as a result of their negligence?
Monetary damages must have occurred for a legal malpractice claim to exist, even if you have concrete evidence that your lawyer was negligent. The court could require you to prove that the outcome of your case would have been more favorable if your lawyer followed the ABA guidelines.
Did substantial damage occur?
Taking a legal malpractice case to court can be a financial burden. Ensuring that the potential payout is significant enough to warrant legal action is crucial. If you only suffered minor monetary damage from the negligence of your previous attorney, it might not be worth your time or money to take further legal action.
Working with a legal malpractice lawyer can help you determine if you should file a claim. Filing your claim as soon as possible could be beneficial as there is a two-year statute of limitations. Your attorney can help you bring your case in front of a judge on your behalf and prove that your attorney breached their duty of care.