Professional MalpracticeWhy Does It Happen?

Written by Economic Development Jobs on January 23, 2017. Posted in Bankruptcy issues, Complex commercial disputes

Stephen m. orlofsky

Professional malpractice concerning legal representation of any client is a breach of contract that is open to a lawsuit against the attorney by the client. Bad representation on the part of a lawyer representing a client is considered negligence, and is, in certain cases, a lawsuit just waiting to happen. As long as the professional malpractice falls within specific guidelines, a client is legally able to sue his or her attorney. This type of case has a good chance of being won by the client when that client can prove that the lawyer was legally bound to adequately and efficiently represent him or her. The client also must prove that the attorney made some type of serious error, or somehow breached that promise of competent representation. Proof must also be given that the attorney’s mistake, or breach, caused some type of financial harm to the client.

Professional malpractice can take place when a lawyer is hired to represent, or defend a client in any type of case, civil rights cases, criminal justice cases, class actions, complex commercial disputes, and more. In order to file a complaint against a lawyer or law firm, the client must submit the complaint in writing to Professional Conduct. This will be sent on to the lawyer for a response.

Professional malpractice can also be filed against an attorney representing a client in a bankruptcy case. If the lawyer misrepresents or causes harm to the client resulting in further financial loss, there are grounds for malpractice. Of clients filing for bankruptcy, estimates show that most, about 90%, actually have less than $10 million worth of liabilities and assets, as well as less than annual revenues of less than $10 million, in addition to having less than 50 employees.

Federal civil cases that actually go to trial have gone from 11.5% in 1962, to 1% today. The number of criminal cases that make it to trial are approximately 10%. The truth be known, 90% of offenders will plead guilty to the charges against them if they know they will receive a shorter sentence than if they go all the way to trial. Typically, a defendant will agree to a guilty plea if the court offers to drop certain charges, or pass down a more lenient sentence in return.

Judges who preside over jury trials are required to be impartial. What they can legally do is to advise the defendant of their rights. In criminal cases, the judge will typically inform the defendant of the possible penalties should he or she be found guilty. In civil cases, the judge will inform the defendant what the plaintiff is asking for from them, and usually suggests retaining an attorney. A judge by the name of Judge t. john ward has presided over more than 150 jury trials in addition to having conducted more than 150 claim construction hearings. Judge Ward, now retired, was a federal judge for the eastern district of Texas from 1999 until 2011, who became well known for the very large number of cases on patent infringement he presided over in his court.

Criminal justice reform receives a lot of attention when it comes to professional malpractice. Many cases of the punishment not fitting the crime have been where professional malpractice suits have been born from. For instance, there are a great many cases of nonviolent drug offenders having been given sentences that have put them in prison for excessive periods of time. This fact has had more than one negative impact on the criminal justice system. It has increased racial problems, within the prisons and outside as well. It has contributed to a domino effect when it comes to the criminal justice system as a whole, which has now become an unfair system. Criminal justice reform includes imposing fair sentences, or, punishments that DO fit the crime, reducing recidivism, reducing the costs of incarceration for runaways, and bringing the criminal justice system as a whole to a place where it actually becomes a fair entity.

Statistics show that the United States only holds under 5% of the world population; however, this country holds 25% of the total prison population. Right now, approximately two million American people are incarcerated, most for nonviolent crimes, but their sentences are unnecessarily excessive.

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