When you hire an attorney to handle a legal issue, you expect professional service and behavior. That is why it is so upsetting when your legal team makes a serious error or behaves negligently in some manner.
According to the American Bar Association, certain legal mistakes are more common than others. By taking steps to ensure the following, attorneys can support their clients reasonably.
Legal matters are often complex. As the client, you deserve a clear explanation of what to expect and your obligations. You also deserve frequent updates as the case progresses. Attorneys that communicate clearly gain their clients’ trust, but they also benefit from a stronger attorney-client relationship. When you know what to expect, you can make informed legal decisions.
Stick to their area of expertise
While many firms cover a wide range of practice areas, it is never a good idea to provide legal advice on an area where knowledge is lacking. Even a seemingly minor recommendation can result in a poor outcome for you if your attorney is not completely informed on the topic. If something is outside their range of expertise, lawyers should seek guidance from another legal professional with the correct knowledge.
Admit to mistakes
Legal mistakes can and do happen, and not all mistakes made by attorneys rise to the level of malpractice. However, when an attorney attempts to cover up a mistake, real problems can arise for the client. Upon learning of any errors, your lawyer should contact you immediately to develop solutions on how to remedy what occurred. They should also apprise you of the potential outcome or consequences of the mistake.
Legal malpractice is about more than just attorney liability. It can also have a serious negative effect on you, the client. Accordingly, all law firms should go above and beyond to provide the best counsel available.