There is a technical side to court proceedings that the average person doesn’t fully understand. Although you may have seen television shows depicting dramatic trials, the reality of the modern courtroom is often far more sedate than what people see in the media.
You shouldn’t expect your attorney to stomp around, shout or do something intended to shock the judge or jury. However, you should be able to count on them speaking up for you when the circumstances require their advocacy.
For example, prosecutors may sometimes attempt to introduce inappropriate evidence or may engage in questionable tactics while questioning someone. If your lawyer doesn’t speak up during the trial, they could leave you at a significant disadvantage and directly contribute to your conviction. If your attorney should have spoken up on your behalf and did not, you may have grounds for a legal malpractice claim.
Staying silent when prosecutors violate court rules is a significant mistake
The evidence that the state wants to introduce can directly impact how the jury or judge perceives you as a defendant. Sometimes, the state has evidence that it did not disclose during the discovery process, which means that they cannot introduce it to the courts until your attorney has an opportunity to look over everything. Other times, statements made by a witness or expert could be problematic.
Defense attorneys know that they need to speak up and object to the introduction of certain kinds of evidence to protect their clients. If they fail to do so either because they didn’t pay attention in court or they didn’t recognize the issue as it occurred, their failure might constitute inadequate representation or an error in judgment. In either case, failing to object to damaging evidence when an objection is possible could be a professional failure.
Do other attorneys believe an objection was necessary?
Proving that your attorney provided you with inadequate representation or committed a grave error in judgment requires evidence. You can establish that other lawyers in the same field would view that behavior as inappropriate or negligent. If other professionals believe your attorney’s inaction was a mistake, then the courts could very well agree.
Bringing a legal malpractice claim against the lawyer who didn’t speak up for you in your trial can hold them accountable and reduce your long-term losses because of their failure.