A lawyer has an obligation to ensure he/she pursues your rights when offering services. This becomes possible if the lawyer is competent, persistent, and willing to work for your case. However, it becomes very frustrating when a lawyer disappointed you-especially when you had done everything possible to ensure you hired the right lawyer. It’s even worse when your lawyer has lied to you that he/she is experienced, whereas he doesn’t understand the legal system. Sometimes it’s hard to know whether a lawyer is working on your case in the right way, especially if you’re a layman. You will be expecting to win only to find that your lawyer has screwed you up. The best part is that the authorities in charge of disciplining lawyers are always ready to protect the public interests. If your lawyer has proven to be incompetent by the way he/she is handling your case, you need to take legal action. The fact is that you have a right to attorney competence. The right action against him/her can be taken if you file a legal malpractice claim.
Signs That Your Lawyer Is Incompetent
If your lawyer is incompetent, this means that he/she will make your case worse instead of better. Most likely, you may even suffer more damages than what you were to claim for. In such a case, you can only sue your lawyer for malpractice. However, before you decide that your case can amount to legal malpractice, you need to check for signs that may lead to malpractice. There are many signs to look out for to determine whether your lawyer is incompetent. Some of them include:
- Lack of preparedness when handling your case: For your lawyer to offer you competent representation, he/ she must prepare adequately. The preparation should be reasonable for the legal representation at hand. The lawyer will do this because of legal knowledge and skills gained by expertise in a particular field. Nonetheless, being an expert in a specific case doesn’t mean that a lawyer should not prepare for your case. A lawyer who claims to be competent enough to handle a particular case when it’s otherwise will still show up. For instance, if your lawyer made it to file your lawsuit promptly, but forgot to file a timely notice of appeal if the claim was unreasonably denied, this shows some level of incompetence
- You are not made aware of the court processes concerning your case: Your lawyer should be in a position to give you tips on how to prepare for your court appearance. He/she must make you feel comfortable by enlightening you on what you need to do or not do during your court proceedings. He/she can do this by helping you understand the process and procedures involved.
- Never on time: If your lawyer seems to be in a hurry all the time, this could be a dangerous situation. One of the factors that make a judge fell pisses is a lawyer who doesn’t keep time. This could mean your case could be biased. This is unprofessional behavior, which is a sign of incompetence.
- Your lawyer seems not to understand law terminologies well and follows the wrong procedure: Can this happen? Yes, in some instances, and even judges or jurors have been known to correct lawyers during court proceedings. A lawyer who is reprimanded by a jury or a judge may be questionable. If this happens, you know outright that your case is in jeopardy and you are on your road to losing your case.
These are but a few signs to watch for. Remember, you can always terminate your relationship and hire another lawyer. Before hiring another lawyer, you should consider the legal malpractice attorney contingency. A good malpractice lawyer will allow you to negotiate the contingency fees. This will give you flexibility. Remember that you may be short of funds since you had some up-front fees you had paid on your case to keep it moving. Lawyers have the responsibility of handling the public well and maintaining the integrity of the legal profession. If this doesn’t happen, disciplinary offenses from the state board will ensure they abide by the rules.
Getting Help From A Legal Malpractice Lawyer
It’s worth noting that incompetence can even happen to lawyers with a significant amount of experience.
This shows that it can be extremely hard to prove malpractice in such a case. Therefore one would only make it through by having a legal malpractice lawyer. Sometimes, these lawyers don’t know that they don’t know unless they fail, and someone else points out the ignorance. Not everyone will respond well to criticism and will ensure to fight you back to save themselves. Therefore, it would be better to have a legal malpractice lawyer by your side. He/she can help you take the necessary legal steps to ensure justice and protect your rights.