When you hire an attorney, you are, in effect, placing your future in their hands. In return for placing such faith in someone, you expect them to repay your trust and do their best to represent your interests.
As with any profession, there will always be a few people who do not live up to the standards you and their profession expect. The result of dealing with one of them is that you may need to take action to make up for the harm they have done to you.
Attorneys have a duty toward their clients
No legal issue has a 100% sure outcome, so an attorney’s failure to win a case doesn’t necessarily equal malpractice. It’s a different story, however, if an attorney fails because they were negligent in performing their duties. That can happen due to several “fatal flaws” an attorney may have, like:
- Lack of organization: An attorney who gets behind on their work or does not keep an accurate track of dates could lead you to miss crucial deadlines.
- Lack of research: Certain tasks, such as purchasing property or starting a business, require detailed investigation to ensure you are free to go ahead. If an attorney you hire to do the work fails to spot title issues or fails to spot an existing trademark, it could result in legal problems for you.
- Lack of understanding: Laws are complex and can change with time. If your legal team does not keep up to date with changes, and double-check issues they are unsure of, they could jeopardize your success. You should not have to pay for their mistakes.
Having your attorney let you down can feel like the worst kind of betrayal. The effects of their actions or inactions could affect you for years to come. Therefore, it is crucial to understand your options to hold them responsible if you suspect legal malpractice.