Legal Malpractice Overview
Although unfortunate, attorney malpractice can occur at law firms of all sizes and in the full spectrum of legal practice areas. Whether the attorney wrongdoing that damaged your case was due to negligence, incompetence — or was deliberate sabotage — you have the right to legal recourse.
At Stanford, Ryan And Associates, APC we handle a broad range of legal malpractice cases, including those related to corporate law, probate and estate planning, tax law, litigation and conflict of interest. Our San Diego law firm is dedicated full time to assisting clients throughout California with significant legal malpractice cases.
What Is Legal Malpractice?
Legal malpractice refers to an attorney’s negligence; breach of fiduciary duty; or breach of contract that causes financial harm to a client or case. Examples include the following:
- Neglect — accepting cases that are outside the attorney’s normal practice areas, missing statute of limitations, failure to conduct sufficient discovery or designate witnesses, etc.
- Intentional wrongdoing — attorney fraud and mishandling of funds, overbilling, misuse of client trust accounts or client funds, theft, abandonment, etc.
- Drafting errors — substantial errors in contracts, agreements and other documentation
- Ethics and professional responsibility — failure to know the law or practice within the code of ethics
- Conflicts of interest— representing multiple parties
How Is Legal Malpractice Proven?
In order to prove there has been a breach of legal duty of care, you must show that the attorney’s actions are not just poor case preparation and strategy, but are instead errors that ethical, reasonable lawyers would not make. Also, a finding of legal malpractice requires proof regarding what would have happened if the attorney had not been negligent or fraudulent. This search for causation requires knowledgeable and skilled representation with experience in research and discovery as well as at trial.
With more than five decades of combined experience with attorney malpractice cases and litigation, our principal attorneys can provide a painstakingly thorough review of the facts in the original case. Our primary objectives will be to find the evidence necessary to prove legal malpractice, and then be strong advocates for your case at trial.