Legal Malpractice

“No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.” 

Hume v. Baggett & Baggett, 221 S.W. 1002, 1003 (Tex. Civ. App.–San Antonio 1920, no writ)(quoting Matthew 6:24 (King James ed.)).

What is legal malpractice? Attorneys are members of “an ancient profession with unique privileges and corresponding responsibilities.” Lee v. Daniels & Daniels, 264 S.W.3d 273 (Tex.App. – San Antonio 2008, pet. den’d). The term legal malpractice refers to any claim brought by a client, including a company, person or organization, against an attorney or law firm, regardless of whether the claim asserts negligence, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, including conflicts of interest, self-dealing and divided loyalty, deceptive trade practices, or inadequate legal representation. An issue that may arise in Texas legal malpractice cases is whether the attorney exercised that degree of care, skill and diligence as attorneys of ordinary skill and knowledge commonly possess and exercise. Legal malpractice may occur in any area of the law, but a 2007 American Bar Association Study on Lawyer’s Professional Liability identified family law, real estate law, trust and estate law, bankruptcy or collections law and plaintiff’s personal injury law as five practice areas in which malpractice claims are most frequent. Ernster Law Firm represents plaintiffs in legal malpractice cases.