The skills of a lawyer come in handy at certain times. For example, when planning one’s estate, engaging in a real estate transaction, or when one’s rights or freedoms are at stake, having legal representation can help one avoid costly mistakes. Much like patients trust doctors with medical issues, North Carolina clients may entrust attorneys with their legal matters. When that trust is misplaced, the client may have cause to file a legal malpractice claim.
One example of this may be an ongoing case in another state involving an estate planning attorney. A few weeks before his ailing client died, the attorney allegedly drafted a new will and trust for him. When the client died shortly thereafter, the wife was shocked to learn that her husband’s entire estate, totaling over $5 million, went to a local church.
The deceased and his wife were not members of the church. However, the attorney was apparently the registered agent for the church’s foundation as well as a member of the board. Eventually, a settlement was reached, dividing the cash, the family home and hundreds of acres of prime farmland among the church, the wife and the rest of the deceased’s family. Nevertheless, the wife is seeking damages from the attorney and his law firm for malpractice, fraud and negligence.
While not every legal matter will go the client’s way, the client can still expect quality representation at every turn throughout the process. When a North Carolina attorney fails to provide adequate counsel or acts with negligence or dishonesty, those negatively affected may wonder what steps they can take to obtain justice. The assistance of an attorney who is dedicated to holding other lawyers to a high standard of practice can examine the facts and help one determine if a legal malpractice claim is warranted.