So, you have lost what you thought was a winnable case. You think the blame squarely lies with your attorney, who you think was negligent in handling your case. Now, all you need to do is file a legal malpractice suit against your lawyer, sue him for damages, and receive a settlement, right? Unfortunately, it is not as easy as it sounds.
Understanding the Concept of Legal Malpractice
If everyone who ever lost a case sued their legal counselor and actually received a settlement, there would be no more lawyers left in the country.
When it comes to legal malpractice, the key thing you need to remember is that attorneys are not responsible for the verdict delivered by the court. They are supposed to represent you in a court of law and defend your interests to the best of their abilities. Beyond that, it is entirely up to the jury and the judge to deliver a fair verdict.
Sometimes, you might lose a case despite your attorney doing his or her best to win it. Such cases do not come under the domain of legal malpractice. To be able to file a legal malpractice suit against your lawyer and actually win it, you need to establish the following elements.
- You hired the legal counselor and authorized him or her to represent you in a court of law, on account of which they were obligated to provide you with competent representation.
- The lawyer failed in his or her duty to provide you with skillful representation – either due to negligence or willful misconduct.
- You were harmed by the legal professional’s negligence and breach of duty.
- The harm you suffered resulted in a financial loss.
Examples of Legal Malpractice
If a legal professional takes on your case even though he or she is not qualified enough to do so, it is a clear case of legal malpractice. If he or she does not communicate with you properly or avoids you intentionally (not returning your calls, texts, and emails), it too could be considered legal malpractice.
Other examples include drafting legal documents and agreements with substantial errors, failing to adhere to deadlines, misappropriating your funds, failing to collect and present evidence in your favor, and representing clients with adverse interests.
You have to understand that even in such instances, you cannot expect to sue your lawyer and receive damages. To be able to do so, you have to prove that you were harmed as a direct consequence of your legal counselor’s actions.
To be able to receive damages, you have to prove one of two things. First – you could have won the case and collected damages if your legal professional had not acted in a negligent manner. Second – your lawyer’s actions harmed you – either physically or mentally – as a result of which you suffered financial losses. If you could prove either of these points, you might be entitled to receive damages.
Choosing the Right Legal Malpractice Attorney
Legal malpractice is a very complex issue and only a highly trained attorney with the necessary expertise could handle it properly. At Makarem Law, we have a number of highly skilled and experienced legal malpractice attorneys who can represent you and help you receive the damages you are legally entitled. So, if you have been a victim of legal malpractice, call us right away on 310-312-0299 or email us at [email protected].
Makarem & Associates has a long list of successes because we know this field well. Call us today! The first meeting is free. Let us hear your story.