Can you sue your lawyer for legal malpractice? We hire a lawyer for several reasons, including – protecting legal rights or filing claims against injury caused, etc.
But what if the lawyer you hired exhibits negligence in representing your case? What if the lawyer makes things even worse instead of resolving them? In such a case, your lawyer is liable to compensate for the negligence caused to you, but if the former disagrees with the same, you are eligible to file a claim.
There could be endless reasons for you to claim compensation from your lawyer, some of the reasons being- missed deadlines, failure to comply with court orders, and filing the wrong papers in front of the jury. These reasons could help you build a strong case against your lawyer.
Filling a lawsuit against a lawyer is always challenging. Even a basic fundamental decision like – “In which court should you sue your lawyer” is critical. The best idea is to hire a legal malpractice lawyer and file a claim against negligence caused.
When can you Sue your Lawyer for Legal Malpractice?
If you believe your lawyer’s actions violate the code of professional responsibility, then, in this case, you are eligible to file a lawsuit claiming legal malpractice. Here are some of the common complaints against lawyers:
Act of Negligence
The most common complaint involves negligence or delays in representing your case. This negligence may result in losing a case or the right to bring an issue to trial.
If your lawyer projects a pattern of failing to respond or take legal action for months, you have the right to sue him in court for an act of negligence.
Sometimes, lawyers misinterpret their actions toward clients. For example, in the initial stage of your case, you might discover your lawyer or attorney has told you, “He has filed a lawsuit,” but no action has been taken. Misrepresenting details can be complete proof of a cover-up of negligence.
Mishandling of Finances
If you have given the responsibility of handling some of your finances to a lawyer, he must not use those finances elsewhere. But if your lawyer has been reluctant lately and dodged your questions regarding that money, chances are he misused those finances.
In this case, you can file a case with a legal malpractice claim against your lawyer.
Conflict in Interests
Your lawyer is supposed to be on your side, solving legal bottlenecks in your case. If you know that your lawyer is representing the responsible party and disclosing your confidential details, you can use your lawyer immediately.
Hidden Fees or Charges
Any complaint related to overcharging for the services is registered as an ethical violation. When a lawyer takes an undue advantage and overcharges for the services he agrees to perform, it’s considered a complete violation of ethics.
Which element of malpractice is hardest to prove?
Causation is among the difficult elements of legal malpractice, which is hard to prove.
If a person gets injured due to a lawyer’s breach of duty, it’s due to legal malpractice or negligence. The person claiming legal malpractice has to demonstrate the lawyer’s negligence; you need to prove “wrongdoing was the reason behind losing your case.” Simply put, you must convince the panel of judges, jury, and arbitrator that you should prevail in the underlying legal matter.
What is the highest malpractice settlement?
A trucking company was at fault, and the negligence caused the lawyer to settle the case by paying $1 million to the victim as a legal malpractice settlement. Until now, this settlement is amongst the highest-paid remuneration.
In this case, the driver and other passengers got injured in a car accident. They had four years to file a case against suspects. But due to the lawyer’s negligence, the victim crossed the deadline and lost his case, which is a massive error for any lawyer.
Legal cases are time sensitive, and all the documents and proofs must be submitted promptly or within a given period. If, in case, your lawyer fails to do so; it is considered a massive error or lack on his part, making the former liable for compensation.
What is the statute of limitations for legal malpractice in Florida?
Florida law “Florida Statutes § 95.11 (4)(a))” states – cases involving professional malpractice and legal malpractice claims should be filed within two years. These two years are counted from when you learned about the ongoing malpractice.
A 2-year statute of limitations generally governs all negligent cases filed against the attorney or lawyer. But if the claim involves a breach of contract, then the issue may involve a 5-year statute of limitation in Florida. As each case is unique, the best idea is to consult a legal malpractice attorney as soon as possible.
What are the four elements required for a claim of malpractice?
Four elements must be covered while filing a lawsuit against your lawyer or attorney. Which includes –
Duty of care: Whether the lawyer at fault owed the plaintiff a legal duty of care is the first element in finding negligence. In some circumstances, the relationship between the defendant and the plaintiff gives rise to a legal obligation. A duty of care is necessary to exercise the same degree of reasonable care that another person in a comparable position would exercise.
Breach in charge: If your lawyer has some duties towards you that they fail to fulfill, it will be considered a breach of conduct/duty. Likewise, if a lawyer’s behavior is negligent toward the victim, that case also, a breach of duty is established.
Causation: The third element of legal malpractice – causation happens when a lawyer’s breach of duty causes harm to his client. It is amongst the most challenging elements of legal malpractice to prove because you have to show your injuries are being incurred due to the lawyer’s negligence.
Detriment: Damage/Detriment is the fourth element of legal malpractice, where a plaintiff incurs injuries and settles the case with monetary compensation. This remuneration Including punitive damages, lost wages, medical expenses, and compensation for loss of quality of life.
According to this element, in most cases, lawyers argue with the victim – he has suffered minimum to no injuries, and the victim argues precisely the opposite.
So, the victim must establish the “detriment” element to file a compensation claim. Then, according to the impact of the injury, a personal injury lawyer will negotiate a reasonable settlement for the victim.
Contact the Coleman Law Group
The injuries caused due to your lawyer’s negligence can be extensive. In addition, financial difficulties can arise due to mounting medical expenses and time away from work.
Contact the Coleman Law Group if you have witnessed legal malpractice. To achieve the best outcome possible, our skilled personal injury attorneys are prepared to invest actively in your case. We are aware that every client is different and deserves to be treated as such.