You can sue your accident claim solicitor if he/she has:
1. Breached their duty of care towards you. All solicitors have a legal commitment to only take up personal injury claims [or indeed any cases] where they have suitable expertise, as well as taking care when working for clients. If this commitment is not met, a solicitor will have breached their duty of care.
2. The breach of duty has resulted in you sustaining a loss. If a solicitor breaches their duty of care towards you and this leads to you experiencing a loss (typically on a financial basis), you will have the grounds for a professional negligence claim against your solicitor.
When can I sue my personal injury solicitor?
There are various ways in which a claim against a personal injury solicitor can develop. The most prevalent claims at present are due to:-
• A failure to serve within four months
• A failure to issue proceedings within the limitation period
• A failure to insure the claim with ATE insurers
• The under settlement of a claim
• The case was struck out
• A failure to instruct appropriate medical experts/investigate issues
This list is not exhaustive. There are plenty of other factors that can be taken into consideration where a personal injury lawyer could be found negligent.
Can I sue my solicitor?
To find out if you are able to sue your personal injury solicitor, you should consult with a law firm which has expertise in professional negligence claims. A lawyer will pay attention to the particulars of your experience with your previous solicitor before advising whether or not you have been the victim of professional negligence. If there is a case to be answered, your lawyer can make a claim on your behalf, recouping the financial damages you have wrongfully suffered.
Personal Injury Undersettlement are on the Increase
According to some professional negligence lawyers, cannibalism is becoming increasingly more common in the accident claims arena – “cannibalism has been to describe the practice of one claimant lawyer suing another claimant lawyer.
The problem has arisen due to the very low levels of fixed legal fees for some accident claims, which leave extremely slim profit margins for claims lawyers. As a consequence, the temptation is there for unscrupulous lawyers to undersettle their client’s claim to get the case over and done with quickly. Reports from the industry indicate that this is already happening.
Barristers Chambers, One Chancery Lane, submitted a written response to the Civil Justice Council’s request for feedback from the legal industry on the impact of the Jackson reforms. One Chancery Lane said that they were seeing an upsurge in the number of people coming to them regarding claims for professional negligence against personal injury lawyers because of undersettlement.
There are also indications that some Personal Injury firms are putting a limit on the number of times a lawyer can deal with a case before it has to be settled. It’s therefore unsurprising that some claims lawyers are seeing making claims against other claims lawyers as a potentially lucrative money making opportunity.
If there is still any doubt that undersettlement of personal injury claims is really a problem, just take a look at the website which Liverpool based law firm Irvings has put online. The website states that in many cases, accident claims are settled “too quickly, without getting the most for people like you”.
Irvings’ website promises to go through any claim which may have been potentially undersettled in detail, and if they suspect that the previous legal team was not thorough, or the claim was mishandled in some way, they “won’t rest until we get you every last penny”. Any claims made using this process are handled on a no win, no fee basis.
Victim of Professional Negligence? Thinking of claiming compensation? Call us today
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