When you hire an attorney, you essentially put your money and possibly even your life in that individual’s hands. You are putting a great deal of trust into such a person and you expect that attorney to act with due care and diligence when it comes to your case.
Unfortunately, lawyers make mistakes. Sometimes these mistakes are easily remedied, but other times they result from complete negligence or incompetence and can have tragic consequences.
If you suspect that you have been the victim of legal malpractice, you can fight for the compensation you deserve. To find out about some of the top causes of legal malpractice, read below.
Conflict of interest
An attorney can face a lawsuit if a conflict of interest existed with the client whether the attorney knew about it or not. For example, if you hired an attorney for business litigation and that attorney owned an interest in your primary Denver competitor, this would qualify as a conflict of interest.
Lack of consent
Your lawyer has a duty to keep you fully informed on the status of you case. This means that your attorney has to present you with all options and any risks involved. In addition, your attorney cannot make a decision on your behalf without obtaining your consent. For example, if you were involved in a car accident and your lawyer accepted a settlement from the other driver’s insurance company without first talking to you about the situation, you might have grounds to file a legal malpractice lawsuit.
Failure to properly investigate
Your attorney must make every effort to discover certain facts about your case through careful investigation. For example, if you were facing a criminal charge but the evidence disappeared during the time the police or lab technicians were processing it and your attorney failed to find that out, this could be legal grounds for a malpractice case.
Negligence in performance
In many cases, timing is everything. Sometimes, if a lawyer does not act within a reasonable amount of time, a client can suffer a loss. For example, if your case against a negligent driver hinges on witness testimony but your attorney took too long to make contact and those witnesses have all but vanished, this could cost you the compensation you needed for your injuries and other losses. Your attorney has a duty to take action in a reasonable timeframe and to follow up on any actions to ensure their progress.
If you have been the victim of legal malpractice, you may be able to file a claim for your losses and other damages. You should not have to suffer further because the legal representative that you trusted failed in his or her duty.