Lawyers are always expected to do what’s best for their clients. They can’t ever have self-serving motives. Because of this, it’s critical that a lawyer who has a conflict of interest steps down from a case before irreparable harm is done to the client.
A conflict of interests isn’t always easy to spot, but it can be very serious if it affects the outcome of a case. That’s the important point in a legal malpractice lawsuit. You have to be able to show that your case’s outcome would have been different if the lawyer didn’t act in the manner they did.
When is there a conflict of interest for a lawyer?
A conflict of interest can arise if the other party or their lawyer has a personal relationship with your attorney. This doesn’t mean that they simply know each other. It means that they’re related in some sort of way or that they’re dating. Any lawyer who has that type of relationship with the other side of the matter shouldn’t take on the case.
It’s also possible that there could be a conflict of interest at the firm level. This is much more complex because the lawyer involved might not have directly been involved in the case in question. The fact that they worked at the firm before leaving it for their current firm could be a conflict of interest in some cases.
Any individual who thinks their lawyer had a conflict of interest should speak up about the matter. It’s critical that all attorneys act in the best interests of their clients. When this doesn’t happen, the client may face negative repercussions. A legal malpractice claim may rectify those situations, so be sure to review your options.