Sue a Lawyer and Win
You hired an attorney because you needed legal advice. But what happens if the legal expert you hired is actually bringing you more legal trouble than you already have? Should you sue your lawyer for malpractice?
In this article, we’ll guide you through the hurdles you will face and the steps you can take to sue a lawyer. We’ll also introduce you to DoNotPay and how you can sue anyone at the convenience of your home.
What Can Lawyers Be Sued For?
A lawyer cannot be held liable simply because he/she did not win your case. For your lawsuit to hold in court, you must show the lawyer mishandled the case in one of the following ways:
|Negligence||You must prove that the lawyer failed to uphold the reasonable standard of care. Examples include:
|Breach of Fiduciary Duty||You must prove that the lawyer did not serve the client a duty of good faith as a result of a conflict of interest. For example, an attorney has invested in an insurance company and may not recommend filing bankruptcy, although this is the best solution, as it will result in the attorney losing his investment in the said company.|
|Fraud||You must prove that the lawyer violated Section 5(a) of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act. For example, omitting or concealing information that forces the client to take actions that resulted in a loss.|
|Negligent Misrepresentation||If you are not a client of the attorney and you relied on his/her misrepresentation, you may still hold the lawyer liable. For example, an airline company needs to secure a loan from the bank and has asked the lawyer to issue an opinion letter that has false information. When the bank discovers the falsified information after approving the loan, it may sue the lawyer.|
What is Attorney Malpractice?
In any lawsuit, there is always a winner and a loser. Therefore, malpractice is not about the outcome of the lawsuit but more about your lawyer committing mistakes that another lawyer would not have made. To sue for attorney malpractice, you need to prove that your lawyer did not employ the care, skill, or diligence that other lawyers would do. As a result, you lost the case and/or suffered financial losses.
Examples of Legal Malpractice
Suing a lawyer for malpractice will require fact-based evidence and will depend on each case’s specific events. It is important to consider the fact that lawyers make decisions depending on what they know at the time. However, there are some common mistakes that lawyers make that may constitute legal malpractice such as:
- Incorrect billing
- Missing deadlines
- Failure to correspond with the client
- Negotiating on a lawsuit without the client’s knowledge or permission
- Provision of incorrect legal counsel
- Misplacing the client’s finances or property
- Writing legal documents that failed to uphold the client’s rights
- Missing the statute of limitations
- Accepting representation although there is a conflict of interest
Steps to Suing Attorneys
If the lawyer misrepresented you, hasn’t been completely honest, or displayed incompetence, you may have a case against him/her in small claims court. Here are the steps on how to sue a lawyer:
- Sever the ties with the attorney. However, make sure to check the contract between the two of you to ensure you are not committing a breach.
- Hire another lawyer (or not). If you plan to take the case to a regular court, then you will need a different lawyer to represent you. But if you plan to file a complaint in small claims, then you don’t need a lawyer.
- Establish a strong paper trail of evidence. Collect every piece of documentation that you have. These include contracts, emails, messages, meeting minutes, bank records, and even audio recordings of phone calls. Substantiate evidence that your former lawyer mishandled your funds, settled the case without your consent for lesser damages, or billed you incorrectly.
- Disclose lies that your former lawyer may have said to you. For example, if the lawyer promised to represent you personally and you end up dealing with a paralegal or a junior lawyer, make sure you have proof of this.
How to Sue A Lawyer with DoNotPay
When you decide to sue a lawyer, filing a complaint in small claims court may be the best recourse. It doesn’t require the services of a lawyer, thus, helping keep your expenses to a minimum. DoNotPay can help streamline the entire complaint filing process for you. All you have to do is:
- Log in to DoNotPay and select the Sue Now Product
- Enter the dollar amount you are owed
- Select whether you want a demand letter or court filing forms
- Describe the reason for the lawsuit and submit any applicable details, including photo proof
That’s it! DoNotPay will then generate a demand letter or court filing forms for you. We’ll also mail a copy of your demand letter to the individual or business you are suing!
Who Else Has DoNotPay Helped Sue?
DoNotPay has a track record of helping people sue big corporations or their next-door neighbors. Our process is simple and easy which makes it suitable if you prefer hassle-free suing in small claims court. Some of the companies include: