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What steps can help you reduce the risk of legal malpractice?

On Behalf of | Apr 19, 2023 | Professional Malpractice

Attorneys must uphold a “standard of care” in every aspect of their job. Put simply, this means they must prioritize clients’ best interests, act in good faith and be able to represent their clients to the best of their abilities. However, there are cases when this does not happen.

In California, some common types of legal malpractice may include missed deadlines, failure to assert a concrete defense, taking a client’s request for granted and many others. It is the lawyers’ job to fulfill their duties to the best of their abilities. However, is there a way you can advocate for yourself and avoid the risk of malpractice? Here are some practical tips you can try:

1. Research

Looming legal matters can leave you stressed and uncertain about the future. Even so, taking some time to do research may help you immensely in the long run. There are two critical parts to this step. You should research:

  • Your case: Do your research about your case so you can meet eye-to-eye with your legal representative. Do you understand the relevant details of the case?
  • Legal guidance: Once you have a brief understanding of your legal matter, take time to consider your options for counsel. Research attorneys online to review their years of experience, their knowledge in the specific area of law and how they will be able to support you.

Your research does not have to be restricted to online sources. You may also consult trusted friends or relatives who have worked with experienced attorneys.

2. Ask questions

From the get-go, ask all the questions you need to clarify with your lawyer. It may help to start a list of questions that arose during your research.

A reliable attorney will be more than willing to give you helpful and valid answers. They will try to explain complex statutes and other legal issues to ensure that you know your rights and how you can claim the justice you deserve.

3. Be transparent

If you have doubts, you need to be open about this to your lawyer or lawyers. Being transparent also means giving them the complete picture of your case as much as possible so they can best represent you in court and build a valid defense. It would be best to express your expectations so you and your lawyer can work towards the most viable outcome.

Whereas well-intentioned lawyers go above and beyond their call of duty, it is still in your best interest to be keen on the progress of your case, legal proceedings, and documentation. A good attorney should keep you informed, so you can remain aware of the circumstances and protect yourself.