When working with a qualified legal professional, everyone should expect to receive reliable, trustworthy counsel and representation. Unfortunately, even the lawyers fighting for you can cause you harm through improper counsel and negligent legal care. If you believe your case suffered as the result of your attorney’s competence or performance, work with a Charleston, SC, legal malpractice lawyer to learn what your options are.
Everyone should be able to trust the legal system to help them rather than hinder them. At the Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, we understand the responsibility that comes with our clients trusting us to provide exceptional representation. We have helped clients in and around Charleston with malpractice claims against other attorneys for more than 20 years. Our team understands how to identify areas of legal negligence and can help you recover losses however possible.
If you believe you’ve suffered a loss due to intentional misconduct or negligent legal service, we are ready to leverage our extensive experience to help you receive the full extent of what you are owed. During an initial consultation, we can assess the details of your case, providing you with an idea of what outcome you could have expected had the negligence not occurred. This can form the basis of your malpractice case.
Malpractice involves a failure to meet the standards of a given profession when providing services or rendering care. Legal malpractice refers to the failure of a lawyer or attorney to uphold their duty of care to their clients. This failure refers to something beyond simply losing a case or providing poor services. Legal malpractice occurs when an attorney acts differently than another competent lawyer reasonably could have in the same circumstances.
When an attorney in Charleston, SC, fails to meet the level of standards befitting a legal professional, and you suffer loss as a result, they may be guilty of malpractice. In most cases, this occurs as the result of negligence. However, in some cases, a lawyer may have been acting with intentional malice. While both cases are a form of legal malpractice, intent matters as malicious acts are treated with greater legal severity and could result in harsher consequences.
In cases of negligence, a lawyer may have:
In cases of malicious intent, a lawyer may have deliberately:
Legal malpractice, just like other forms, involves the presence of three essential elements: duty, breach, and damages. To prove that an attorney acted with negligence, you and your legal malpractice lawyer will need to demonstrate the following:
Your legal malpractice lawyer can help establish each of these three elements in your case, demonstrating how the legal professional breached their duty and evaluating the damages you suffered as a result.
The fundamental point being argued in legal malpractice is the loss you experience as the direct result of a lawyer’s negligence. Those losses must be a direct result of the specific malpractice to be eligible for compensation in a case. You cannot, for instance, recover damages for a loss that you would have inevitably incurred regardless of the malpractice. In a successful malpractice case, you may be able to recover:
An experienced legal malpractice attorney, like those at the Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, can help you understand what types of compensation you may expect from your potential claim during a case evaluation and consultation.
A: In South Carolina, you are legally allowed to bring a claim against your lawyer if they have acted with negligence while providing you with legal services. Legal negligence occurs when an attorney owes you a duty of care, has breached that duty in some way, and has caused you harm as a result. If the lawyer was representing you and failed to provide a level of representation that another lawyer would have reasonably done, they may be considered negligent.
A: South Carolina law considers legal malpractice any failure by an attorney to render professional services to the degree that another attorney would have reasonably done under the circumstances. Malpractice can include action or inaction that reflects a lawyer’s skill, knowledge, or work ethic and diligence to provide appropriate representation or services. Further, to be considered malpractice, the negligence should have caused you damages in some way.
A: The statute of limitations on bringing up attorney malpractice claims in South Carolina is three years. During this time frame, you may file a claim against a negligent lawyer for malpractice if you suspect they did not meet their duty of care while representing you. It is vital that you pursue a claim as soon as you become aware of the negligence, as this will increase your chances for a successful claim.
A: How long a malpractice case can last will vary greatly depending on the complexity of the case, the schedule of the court, the progress of any settlement negotiations, and whether either party seeks an appeal. Generally, most malpractice cases can last at least a year, with some cases lasting several years. However, if you are able to settle out of court, this offers a much quicker resolution than taking your case all the way to trial.
When you’ve experienced loss and injustice, it can be even more difficult to attempt to pursue an additional legal case. However, it is important to hold all parties responsible for negligence, especially those in the legal profession who have an obligation to uphold justice and provide competent and careful counsel. The attorney team at Tatum Law Firm, PLLC, is ready to hold negligent lawyers accountable and help you recover the compensation you deserve.
With the right legal counsel, you can protect your rights and ensure a favorable outcome that rectifies the wrongs brought against you. To get started in this process with an initial consultation, contact our office today and begin your road to justice and recovery.