Legal Malpractice


Other attorneys make mistakes, the Michigan lawsuit office fixes them


  An attorney may owe a client monetary damages if the attorney negligently causes the client to suffer a loss. When an attorney’s negligence causes a client to lose a case or suffer a reduced value of a case, a legal malpractice lawsuit against the negligent attorney is the only cause of action for the client to pursue. Ineffective assistance of counsel is only an independent grounds for a new trial in criminal cases. 

   To be successful, a Michigan lawsuit attorney representing a plaintiff in a legal malpractice action must prove that an attorney-client relationship existed at the time the attorney was negligent, negligence by the attorney, the existence of damages, and that the damages (i.e., a lost case or lost case value) were caused by the negligent attorney.

   Michigan’s Civil Jury Instructions provide that legal malpractice means a failure to perform in a way that a lawyer of ordinary learning, judgment, or skill would have performed under similar circumstances. An attorney-client relationship exists whenever a person consults a lawyer in the lawyer’s professional capacity for the purpose of seeking legal advice and the attorney agrees to act on that person’s behalf in some professional capacity. Signed papers are not necessary to create an attorney-client relationship. Generally, an attorney-client relationship remains in existence until either the client or the court relieves the attorney of the obligation to represent the client. 

Ross Gilders

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