Can I Sue My Lawyer for Misrepresentation?
Can I sue my lawyer for misrepresentation? Your attorney is intended to be your advocate, helping you weather the storm within the justice system and shielding you from any unnecessary harm that may come your way. So when your attorney, the person entrusted with upholding the law and protecting your interests, harms your case, what can be done? Can you sue them for misrepresentation?
If your attorney deceived you for personal gain, misrepresented the facts, or otherwise violated their duty to you as a client, you may be able to sue them.
Suing a lawyer is complex and proving that your lawyer committed malpractice can be a difficult fight, but Ross Sears and the lawyers who sue lawyers at Sears Crawford have been handling legal malpractice cases in Texas for over three decades. If anyone is prepared to take your former attorney to trial, it’s him. Call Ross Sears today at (713) 223-3333 to begin building your case.
What is it called when a lawyer fails to represent you?
When a lawyer fails to represent you properly it is known as misrepresentation or legal malpractice. However, not all forms of deception by your attorney count as legal misrepresentation. Misrepresentation by your attorney occurs when they deliberately lie or conceal material information to induce you to make a decision that you would not otherwise make. The most common ways that lawyers misrepresent their clients include:
- Making false statements about the law
- Not disclosing material information about a case
- Using fraudulent documents or withholding evidence
There are a few types of misrepresentation that your lawyer can commit: fraudulent, negligent, and innocent.
- Fraudulent misrepresentation occurs when your attorney makes an intentionally false statement about a material fact with full knowledge that it is untrue. A common example of fraudulent misrepresentation is an attorney looking to collect a quick fee telling their client that their case is unwinnable at trial and encouraging them to take a settlement when the case is not “unwinnable.”
- Negligent misrepresentation can also be thought of as incompetence. Negligent misrepresentation occurs when an attorney makes inaccurate statements but is unaware that they are doing so, and this happens more often when attorneys take on cases outside of their expertise.
- Innocent misrepresentation occurs when an attorney makes a false statement without knowing that it is false and without expecting you to rely on their advice. Innocent misrepresentation may still be attorney negligence, and can, under certain circumstances, still be pursued for damages in court.
Can I sue my attorney for misrepresentation? If you made a decision based on misrepresentation or bad information from your attorney and it caused you to suffer losses, you may have grounds to sue them for legal malpractice. Talk to a trusted legal malpractice lawyer, like those at Sears Crawford, and ask them if you have a case.
What are examples of unethical attorney behavior?
Not all of the things an attorney can do are reasons to sue an attorney — you’ll only be able to sue an attorney if they committed legal malpractice.
Legal malpractice occurs when an attorney acts, or fails to act, in the same way that a reasonable and prudent attorney would under the same or similar circumstances, and that action or inaction harms their client. Some of the most common types of legal malpractice include the following:
- Negligence in the way of missed deadlines or sloppy work
- Failure to know or apply the law
- Failure to calendar or poor planning
- Overbilling or unconscionable fees (Continue reading: How to prove attorney overbilling)
- Failure to obtain client consent, usually by settling a suit that a client has agreed to settle
- Negligently misrepresenting the facts or the law or the risks in the case
What these unethical behaviors have in common is that they are all considered to generally fall under the umbrella of what is considered attorney malpractice. Not all annoying or unethical behaviors equal legal malpractice — for instance, you probably wouldn’t sue an attorney for taking too long to call you back. To know for certain, you should contact a trusted legal malpractice attorney and ask them if you have the grounds to sue your lawyer.
How long do you have to sue an attorney for malpractice?
The legal malpractice statute of limitations determines how long you have to sue your attorney for malpractice in Texas. It dictates that you generally have two years from the date of discovery of malpractice to sue your lawyer, after that you may be out of luck.
There are certain circumstances in which the statute of limitations may be extended to four years, including when an attorney has breached their fiduciary duty, but the only way to be sure is to contact a trusted legal malpractice attorney as soon as possible.
Statutes of limitations exist because memories fade and evidence disappears. Do not close the door to getting what you deserve by waiting around to take action. Call Ross Sears, the trusted legal malpractice attorney at Sears Crawford, today.
How to sue a lawyer for misrepresentation
To sue your lawyer for misrepresentation, you’ll need to first find a legal malpractice lawyer to confirm that you have a case. Your legal malpractice attorney will need to show the following things to prove legal misrepresentation:
- Your previous attorney made a false statement of fact
- They either knew that they were making a false statement or did so recklessly by not knowing whether or not it was true
- That statement of fact was meant to lead you to take a course of action
- You used the false statement of fact to take the action suggested
- As a result of this false statement and action you or your case were harmed
Your attorney will need to prove the above if you want to recover damages for the harm caused by your previous lawyer. While proving misrepresentation isn’t easy, it is possible with the help of an experienced legal malpractice attorney.
Continue reading: What to do if your lawyer is not helping you
Can I sue my lawyer for misrepresentation? With Sears Crawford, you can.
If you’re still wondering “Can I sue my lawyer for misrepresentation?” If your lawyer misrepresented material facts and caused you harm, the answer is likely yes!
The attorneys at Sears Crawford have seen it all over the years. Ross Sears has over 30 years of experience holding negligent lawyers responsible for their actions and upholding justice for his clients. If you or a loved one has been harmed by your lawyer’s misrepresentation, call Ross at Sears Crawford today at (713) 223-3333 or contact us online to begin the process of getting what you’re owed.
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