Can I sue my lawyer? It’s a basic question, but a good one. Some people worry that it’s not possible to sue a lawyer. It is. If your lawyer commits malpractice, you can sue for any damages it causes you.
Do I need a lawyer to sue my lawyer? It’s a good idea to find an experienced legal malpractice lawyer to go after the first lawyer. We know that sounds like a lot of lawyers, but legal malpractice cases are complex and a niche area of law. You simply have a better chance at succeeding if you hire someone who has done it before.
What counts as legal malpractice? It’s professional negligence. If your lawyer failed to act as they should when handling your case, then it can constitute malpractice. An expert will testify as to what your lawyer should have done. It generally has to be more than a mistake, and if your lawyer made a judgment call that turned out to be wrong, that also might not be enough.
How much money can I get? The amount you can recover in a legal malpractice lawsuit depends on your provable damages. This is the financial harm that you suffered as a result of the malpractice. In a failed real estate deal, for example, you can probably put your loss into a dollar amount. This is where some potential legal malpractice cases get weeded out – if you don’t have monetary damages, you probably don’t have a case.
Am I likely to win? There’s one other major part of a legal malpractice case, in addition to proving negligence and showing your monetary damages. You also have to prove that if your lawyer had done what they should have done, you would have won the case. So if you are in a car accident and sue the other driver for $30,000 but your lawyer blows the deadline and you get nothing, you‘ll have to prove that you would have won the car accident case if your lawyer hadn’t missed the deadline. It’s essentially two cases in one.
You don’t have to decide on your own whether you have a legal malpractice case worth pursuing. Most legal malpractice attorneys in Illinois will give you a free initial consultation, where you can ask questions and get their opinion on whether you have a good case.
If you would like our help in finding a lawyer or just have questions, fill out the box to the right or call us at (800) 517-1614.