When a lawyer makes a mistake, the client usually suffers some sort of harm. Whether the attorney acted negligently or breached their fiduciary duties, the client usually pays for the consequences. The harm might be indirect, but it is harm nonetheless. When a lawyer’s negligence, actions, or legal advice causes you to lose out on legal action, you may have a legal malpractice claim. There are several types of damages in legal malpractice lawsuits.
What Damages are Available in Legal Malpractice Cases?
There several types of damages that harmed clients may be eligible for. Some of the most frequently sought forms of damages in legal malpractice claims include:
● Direct Losses. For instance, if your lawyer missed a filing deadline, and now it will cost you an additional fee, you can seek the cost of the fee as part of your damages.
● Lost Wages. If your lawyer has mistreated you through their negligence, and it caused you to miss work, you may be entitled to lost wages. Occasionally, individuals have to take time off work to correct or mitigate their lawyer’s error. This could involve spending time resolving the issue, filing a legal malpractice lawsuit, or working with a new lawyer.
● Lost Earning Potential. Your lawyer’s negligence or actions might directly affect your earning ability. You may be entitled to damages up to the amount that you would have earned had your lawyer not acted negligently.
● Emotional Distress. Your lawyer could mess up in a way that can upset you. Not only did the lawyer’s malpractice violate your trust, but additional factors might exist that make the situation emotionally distressing.
● Damages for Medical Expenses and Physical Pain. There could be a scenario in which your lawyer’s misconduct causes you to suffer physical pain that requires medical treatment. For instance, if the shock of learning of your lawyer’s misconduct caused you to suffer a heart attack, you could possibly recoup your medical expenses.
Legal malpractice claims are not eligible for punitive damages. Additionally, an injured client cannot recover attorney’s fees in a legal malpractice suit for the claim itself. An injured client can, however, seek attorney’s fees as far as those fees apply to correcting or rectifying the situation generated for the client arising from the previous attorney’s misconduct.
A Poor An Unfavorable Outcome is Not the Same as Legal Malpractice
There is a difference between an unfavorable outcome and legal malpractice. In an unfavorable outcome, the lawyer did what they were supposed to, but the result was not what the client hoped for. This happens sometimes. For instance, an adoption lawyer could file everything correctly, but an adoption can still fall through. When the bad result or unfavorable outcome is not due to the lawyer’s negligence or misconduct, then it may not be legal malpractice.
Get the Damages You Deserve with an Illinois Legal Malpractice Lawyer
When you have a legal malpractice claim against your former attorney, it is important to consider every applicable damage that can be sought in your case. This ensures you get the maximum recovery that you deserve. We can help with your legal malpractice claims. Contact us today to discuss the damages in legal malpractice lawsuits.