When Attorneys Miss Deadlines
It doesn't matter how good your case is if your attorney misses the Statute of Limitations or fails to comply with a judge's deadline. An attorney must be knowledgeable of the substantive law and must be aware of all legal deadlines that can affect the case. When an attorney misses a deadline, an entire case can collapse. Anyone whose lawsuit has suffered because of a missed deadline should contact a legal malpractice lawyer.
With our extensive experience in the field of legal malpractice, the lawyers of Schwartz & Ponterio, PLLC can assist anyone in the New York City area who has been wronged by a negligent or unethical attorney. We offer consultations to people in the 5 NYC boroughs, Long Island, White Plains, Suffolk County, Kings County, Nassau County, Queens County and Westchester County.
We handle missed deadline cases involving issues of:
- Statute of limitations: There is nothing anyone can do to extend the time allowed by the Statute of Limitations for filing a lawsuit. No matter how compelling or important a case may be, if a lawyer lets the statute of limitations lapse, the case is subject to dismissal. The lawyer, however, can be held liable for the amount that should have been won in litigation.
- Court-ordered deadlines within a lawsuit: As a case proceeds, the court will mandate deadlines for complying with discovery and other actions. If a lawyer does not comply in time, a case can be dismissed outright.
- Pre-lawsuit notices of claim: If you intend to sue a city or any type of governmental body, you must usually first fulfill notice of claim deadlines that are very short. If a lawyer misses the deadline, the client may very well be prevented from filing any lawsuit.
If your case has suffered because of any of these oversights, you can sue your former attorney for the damages you would have won in the first lawsuit. For example, if you had a valid personal injury case in which you would have won damages of $100,000, you can sue your attorney for $100,000.
Statute of Limitations in Legal Malpractice
Often people do not realize that they can file suit against their former lawyers until long after they have been mistreated. They may have been kept in the dark as to the nature of the problem or may have been too embittered by the legal process to even consider asking another lawyer.
You must act quickly if you believe you have been a victim of legal malpractice. As with all cases, lawsuits against attorneys are subject to statutes of limitations. You must file a legal malpractice case within 3 years of the incident. As with many areas of the law, it is not always clear how the 3-year period should be calculated and there may be a basis for filing a claim even after 3 years, depending on the circumstances. For example, if the lawyer continued to represent you after the malpractice occurred, the clock may not have begun to run until the representation ended. Time is of the essence and you should seek legal counsel immediately if you think your attorney has committed malpractice.
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