When you hire a lawyer, you’ll be doing so with the faith that they will act in the most competent and professional way. The work that they are doing on your behalf will undoubtedly have a huge impact on your life. It may be the difference between whether or not you face jail time, or whether you are able to gain the compensation that you deserve after an accident.
Lawyers have fiduciary duties toward their clients. This means that if they fall short of their duties, they can be held legally accountable. If you believe that an attorney you hired failed to deliver on the duties that they owed you, it’s possible to take action to file for damages on the grounds of legal malpractice. The following is an overview of the most common types of legal malpractice.
Conflict of interest
Your attorney has the fiduciary duty to act in your best interests. This means that they must avoid any possible instances of conflicting interests. Large legal firms can often face issues regarding conflict of interest since they are more likely to represent both parties in a case.
There should always be a written agreement in place before working with an attorney. It is the responsibility of the attorney to present their future client with a written fee agreement to be signed. This agreement should clearly address whether the case will include a contingency fee. If you believe that your attorney acted in a fraudulent way with regard to billing and fee transparency, look into your legal options, since you may be able to gain back damages.
As the client, you should be kept up to date by your attorney, and always be fully informed before any action is taken. If your attorney settles a case without your explicit permission, or if you are pushed to make a decision without having the full information presented to you, it’s possible that you are a victim of legal malpractice.
Don’t let your attorney take advantage of you. It’s your legal right to be represented by a competent and trustworthy attorney. Therefore, if you believe that your attorney fell short of their fiduciary duties, you should hold them liable.