When you’re trusting a lawyer to handle a legal case, you expect them to put time and effort into preparing it. You’d also think they would act professionally, which includes showing up to appointments on time, communicating with you, and staying organized. Lawyers that are negligent risk the outcome of your case, which extends to affecting your wellbeing and future. But you can hold them accountable with a Philadelphia legal malpractice lawyer from Shrager & Sachs.
If you’ve concluded that you need to sue your attorney, we can help you. We have experience with legal negligence cases and we understand how complex these situations can be. Our team is comprised of skilled, compassionate professionals who believe in standing up for innocent people who were wronged by negligent individuals or groups.
What Is Legal Malpractice?
Legal malpractice occurs when an attorney acts negligently or incompetently while handling a client’s case. Their actions could be accidental or on purpose, but for malpractice to occur, the client must have suffered as a result.
Examples of Legal Errors
The American Bar Association released this list of the common reasons individuals decide to bring a legal malpractice lawsuit forward:
- Failure to Know or Apply the Law. It’s an attorney’s job to know the current laws and how to apply them. Failure to do this could jeopardize a client’s case.
- Planning Error. This is when the counsel has all the facts and still makes an error when it comes to strategizing or proceeding.
- Inadequate Investigation. Certain facts and evidence will be presented that have been discovered in an investigation, but the evidence in question was never actually found.
- Failure to Follow Client’s Instructions. An attorney either knowingly or unknowingly goes against the client’s instructions for their claim.
- Failure to Calendar Properly. A lawyer needs to stay on top of deadlines and time limits. Forgetting to do so could make their client miss important dates.
- Procrastination. Inaction causes a client’s case to be delayed and they can suffer losses.
- Failure to Obtain Client Consent. Clients need to be informed of risks and alternative methods before proceeding because they may prefer a different route. When they don’t know about risks, clients are making an uninformed decision and therefore can’t give consent.
- Conflict of Interest. A lawyer can be held accountable for having a conflicting interest, whether or not they’re aware of it.
- Fraud. Fraudulent actions could cost the client their time and money without having any results.
If any of these sound familiar to you or if you believe a different legal error was made at your expense, you can consult one of our legal malpractice lawyers in Philadelphia.
Proving Legal Malpractice
You need a few key elements for your claim to be valid. Your claim should show the following points:
- The Existence of an Attorney-Client Relationship. When an attorney agrees to offer you their legal services and you accept them, there’s usually a contract or written agreement to show this.
- The Attorney Acted Negligently. You need to show that your representative failed to act as others in their position would have.
- Their Actions Caused Your Damages. Then you have to prove that if your lawyer hadn’t been negligent, your case would have been successful.
When your current lawyer presents evidence that proves these points, you have a better chance of getting a favorable settlement that will help you financially recover from your experience.
What Are the Signs of a Negligent Lawyer?
Having a negative legal experience may make you wary of other attorneys in the future. There are a few indicators of whether or not this person will give you the representation you deserve. They can also signify that they may act in a way that puts your case at risk.
- Disorganization. A messy office or piles of cases with seemingly no organizational system can show you that you can’t depend on this person to keep your important documents in order.
- Tardiness. You need to have representation that respects your time. Lateness for appointments or court dates wastes your time and may affect your case.
- Lack of Communication. You should be able to ask questions and be up to date with your case. Lawyers that skirt calls and ignore emails aren’t reliable.
- Rudeness. Personal injury cases can be delicate situations. If your lawyer constantly cuts you off, talks down to you, or makes improper remarks during your meetings, know that you can find better legal counsel.
Noticing any of these warning signs means that it’s time to look elsewhere. In Philadelphia, Shrager & Sachs sets the standard for treating clients with respect and dignity while handling their cases. We’re prompt in communication to keep our clients on the same page and always prepared for court dates and appointments.
Let a Philadelphia Legal Malpractice Lawyer Help You
If you’ve suffered financial losses because of an incompetent lawyer, we’re here to help. We’ve been protecting Philadelphia citizens’ rights for years and will continue to fight for yours. You deserve to know that there are trustworthy lawyers who will go above and beyond for their clients. Give us a call today to schedule a consultation and we can review your case.