A lawyer is considered to have committed legal malpractice when he or she was negligent, breached a contract, or breached their fiduciary duty.
Negligence: Attorney misses or fails to meet a deadline, fails to file a court document properly, fails to appear in court etc.
Breach of Contract: Attorney fails to follow the guidelines outlined in the attorney-client contract.
Breach of Fiduciary Duty: The attorney acts in the interests of the client while disregarding his or her best interests.
What is Needed to Prove Legal Malpractice?
For a plaintiff to establish a claim for legal malpractice, he or she must plead and prove the following:
1. The existence of an attorney-client relationship (duty)
2. A breach of duty arising out of the attorney-client relationship
3. That the breach was the proximate cause of the damages claimed in the complaint
4. Damages, including the fact that the loss of the underlying case was a proximate result of the attorney’s claimed negligence
Legal malpractice does not always include attorney mistakes, but clients are entitled to adequate representation. Call us at 312.223.1699 if you think you may be a victim of legal malpractice and would like to speak with an experienced attorney in Wheaton.