WHAT IS Legal Malpractice

Should I sue my lawyer?

If you have done any research about legal malpractice, you’re probably already aware of the fact that most law firms are very reluctant to a bring a legal malpractice lawsuit against another practicing lawyer, particularly when the lawyer practices in the same jurisdiction.  We recognize that it is never pleasant to sue a fellow lawyer, so we don’t take representing clients against lawyers lightly. The stress, difficulty and complications that result from an attorney’s malpractice or ethical violations can leave you with a feeling of distrust in the Law Firm and/or the Legal System.    We believe and expect that if our firm improperly handles a case for a client, we should make good on our mistake and try to make our client whole again.  Isn’t taking responsibility for your own actions and owning your mistakes part of being a responsible person?  

Legal malpractice cases sometimes include very small mistakes by your Attorney that can cost you a lot of money. Other legal malpractice cases can be difficult and complicated and can involve an attorney’s breach of their fiduciary, financial, or ethical obligations that are owed to the client. Although the State Bar has the power to discipline attorneys for ethical violations, we have the power and ability to pursue civil damages on your behalf if you have been wronged by Lawyers who have committed mistakes and/or ethical violations.

Most people only hire a lawyer once or twice in their entire lifetime and it’s because they are presented with a very difficult situation or problem.  When the lawyer screws up and compounds the problem, he or she should answer for their negligence just like any other professional.  As a result of our willingness to hold other lawyers accountable for their actions, we have, over the years, been called upon to represent numerous individuals and companies in Memphis and throughout Tennessee and across the Southeastern United States in pursing legal malpractice claims.  Our legal malpractice law firm has a very good success rate of making these negligent lawyers do the right thing.     

The practice of law can be very complex and mistakes can be made that have devastating consequences to good people.  A lawyer can also just lose a case through no fault of their own.  It happens.  Juries can make bad decisions and get it wrong for lots of reasons. Just because your lawyer did not get you a good result doesn’t necessarily or automatically mean that he or she committed legal malpractice.  In Tennessee, in order to successfully bring a claim for legal malpractice against a lawyer, you will have to prove that the lawyer’s actions (or inaction) fell below the required standard of practice for attorneys in Tennessee.  A client must generally prove a “breach of the standard of care” through expert testimony, i.e., another lawyer.  In other words, we will have to show that a reasonably prudent and competent lawyer would not have done what your lawyer did or would have done something that your lawyer failed to do and that these failures actually caused you damage.  These types of cases can be very complicated, frustrating and difficult.  In many of the cases we have handled, we have found that lawyers, like doctors, sometimes do not like to admit that they committed an error and will fight very hard to avoid taking full responsibility for their failures.  As a result, you need a tenacious and experienced lawyer to fight for you.  

Here are some of the most common Legal Malpractice issues:

Missing Statutes of Limitation – if your attorney failed to file your case on time, you can lose your claim entirely, costing you your entire recovery on your claim.

Missing Other Deadlines – if your attorney failed to meet other deadlines in a case, you may end up with a bad result and may be entitled to recover from your attorney.

Conflict of Interest – if your attorney improperly represents someone with whom you have a conflict, it may have an adverse impact your case that entitles you to recovery.

Ethics Violations or Intentional Wrongdoing – if your attorney commits a professional ethical violation, such as disclosing privileged and confidential information to an opposing party, you may be entitled to recovery.

Incompetence – if your attorney failed to provide you with the standard of care of practicing attorneys in Tennessee, you may be entitled to recovery if your attorney’s incompetence caused you harm.

If you have experienced any of these issues or others that hurt your case or caused your case to be thrown out of court, you might have a Legal Malpractice claim. Our malpractice lawyers prepare every case as if it were going to trial, and we are not afraid to go to trial. At Watson Burns, we hold negligent attorneys accountable when there is a “breach of the standard of care” for their actions. Our Legal Malpractice Law Firm has substantial experience with legal malpractice cases. Let us work for you to get the compensation you deserve.

If you think you have a legal malpractice claim, call us for a consultation with our malpractice lawyers in Memphis, Tennessee .  We will review your situation and give you an honest assessment of your potential case free of charge.  To see how we usually charge for handling legal malpractice cases, please visit the Legal Fees section of our site.