How to Find a Top Legal Malpractice Lawyer
If you have been mistreated by your former attorney and are seeking justice, you need a top legal malpractice lawyer on your side. Suing your former attorney for malpractice can be an overwhelming and stressful situation, but you never have to go through this time alone. With experienced representation from a top legal malpractice attorney, you can hold your former lawyer accountable.
At Sears Crawford, we sue lawyers because we hold attorney’s accountable to their clients. Ross Sears has successfully helped hundreds of clients who were victims of legal malpractice find justice.
Here are some key factors to consider when you are searching for the top legal malpractice lawyer.
1. Do You Have a Case?
Before you decide to sue your former attorney, it’s important to know what is considered malpractice for an attorney? Legal malpractice is when an attorney acts/fails to act in a manner that a prudent attorney would act under similar circumstances, AND that act or failure to act omission (failure to act) results in damages to the client.
Common examples of legal malpractice cases include:
- Negligence: Your attorney did or failed to do something a reasonable attorney would not do. For example, they filed the wrong papers, did not comply with court orders, missed a deadline, or made other unintentional errors a prudent attorney would not make in similar circumstances.
- Breach of fiduciary duty: This type of case requires us to prove that your attorney acted in a way that was NOT in your best interest, or in a way that put the lawyer’s interests ahead of the client. For example, your attorney settled the case without your approval, because he was afraid to, or not qualified to proceed to trial, abandoned your case, charged an unconscionable fee, or misused funds. For more information, visit our article “Can I sue my lawyer for breach of fiduciary duty?”
- Breach of contract: When you enter into an attorney-client relationship with your attorney, it can be verbal or in writing, and it forms a legally binding contract. Breach of contract refers to when your attorney fails to comply with the terms of the contract, which can result in damages to the client.
- Conflict of interest: If your attorney places another party’s interests, or their own interests ahead of the client, without fully disclosing the conflict, then they have breached their fiduciary duty to you. This can arise when an attorney goes into business with a client and/or has financial interests that are different or contrary to the client’s interests.
You cannot sue your lawyer for malpractice simply because you are unsatisfied with the outcome of your case. Legal malpractice claims should only be made if your attorney failed to fulfill their duties as your lawyer and as a result, you suffered a financial loss. If you believe you may have a case, you can contact Ross Sears to discuss your claims. The consultation is FREE.
2. Narrow Your Search
Many attorneys have an area of focus, such as family law, white-collar, personal injury, etc. A lawyer may claim they are capable of practicing in any area of law, but it is always best to find an attorney who specializes in legal malpractice if you decide to sue your prior attorney.
Finding lawyers that sue lawyers for malpractice on Google can be a tad overwhelming. Many unqualified attorneys advertise that they can handle certain cases, when in reality, they cannot or should not. Instead, try legal sites including FindLaw and Super Lawyers to narrow down the top legal malpractice lawyers in your city. These sites find attorneys who actually handle legal malpractice cases and have the experience and reputation to properly represent clients like you.
Once you find a few top attorneys, visit their website and look for their legal malpractice pages, blogs, and any other information you can find. The more details they have on the subject, the more likely they are to be experts in that field.
3. Look at Their Experience
When it comes to suing a lawyer for malpractice, it’s important to take note of your potential attorney’s past experience in this field of work. Have they successfully handled cases like yours in the past? Are there client testimonials you can read on their website? You should be able to tell from the attorney’s website what area(s) of law they specialize in.
“Super Lawyer” Ross Sears has 30 years of experience helping hundreds of clients in cases involving everything from missed deadlines, overbilling and unconscionable contingency fees, failure to disclose conflicts of interest, general negligence, insufficient settlements, and more. Ross Sears is also Board Certified in the area of Personal Injury Law (which includes the area of Legal Malpractice) by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Less than 5% of the attorneys in Texas are Board Certified.
4. Ask Questions during the initial consultation
Once you identify a few malpractice lawyers in Houston, set up a consultation with each of them and interview them.Here are some key questions to ask your potential future attorney:
- Have you worked on cases like mine in the past?
- What are your fees?
- What is your communication style?
- How many legal malpractice cases do you take on at one time?
- Who will work on my case?
- Do you/your firm carry Legal Malpractice Insurance? (NOTE: If the answer to this question is no, leave that lawyer’s office immediately and go to the next attorney). DO NOT EVER hire an attorney who does not carry malpractice insurance. EVER!
- Does your firm require that I waive my right to trial by jury (eg. Arbitration) if you commit malpractice on my case? (NOTE: If the answer to this question is no, leave that lawyer’s office immediately and go to the next attorney). Do NOT hire an attorney that puts their interest ahead of yours by requiring you to waive your right to trial by jury if you later have to sue them for malpractice.
Try to get a feel for their personality and be critical of their responses. At the end of the day, trust your intuition.
Looking for a top legal malpractice lawyer? Look no further than Sears Crawford.
At Sears Crawford, we are dedicated to representing clients anywhere, anytime, against any attorney. If you want a top legal malpractice lawyer who will treat you with the respect you deserve, let’s talk. Call 713-223-3333 to request a free consultation with our attorneys.
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