Personal Injury Claim Lawyers

Professional Negligence Claims Against Solicitors

What is Solicitor Professional Negligence?

Solicitor negligence is when a solicitor fails to meet the expected standard of care and professionalism when handling a client’s legal matters. This negligence can include errors, omissions, or breaches of duty, and may harm the client’s legal position. This can potentially lead to financial losses or legal complications.

We expect the advice given to us by solicitors to be accurate. However, sometimes things can go wrong, meaning you lose out financially as a result. Examples of solicitor negligence include:

  • Failing to perform to professional standards.
  • Under-settling claims.
  • Not following instructions properly.
  • Failing to advise on issues affecting property transactions.
  • Missing deadlines, including limitation dates and court deadlines.
  • Mistakes in drafting legal documents such as Wills and property documents.
  • Solicitor’s dishonesty.
  • Not advising on the outcome of surveys, searches, or valuations in property transactions.
  • Causing a claim to be struck out by the courts.
  • Giving legal advice that causes you a loss.

Can I sue my solicitor for negligence?

All solicitors owe a duty of care to the clients they work with. This means they should provide proficient legal support. If a solicitor provides a substandard service and the client experiences a loss as a result of this, it is considered a breach of that duty of care. Under these circumstances, the solicitor’s client may be able to sue them on the grounds that the owed duty of care was breached. Cases like these are referred to as professional negligence.

In the UK, the legal profession is regulated by the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority (SRA), which is responsible for maintaining standards in the profession. The SRA Solicitor’s Code of Conduct outlines the ethical standards and professional behaviour expected of solicitors in England and Wales. It provides useful guidance on whether you may have a genuine case for negligence, or if it is a complaint.

Which solicitors can be subject to a solicitor negligence claim?

Any solicitor, regardless of their area of practice or specialisation, can be the target of a solicitor negligence claim, provided the client believes they have breached professional standards and caused harm or financial losses due to their actions or omissions.

What happens if my solicitor gives me the wrong advice?

Our legal rights and obligations are often complex, and UK law can be confusing and open to interpretation. That’s why you may seek the advice of professionals who are qualified to work in the legal industry.

You should be able to trust your solicitors to provide you with the correct legal advice, but sometimes things can go wrong. This is where the notion of professional negligence comes into play. If you’ve suffered damages as a result of the wrong advice, you may be able to make a claim for compensation due to professional negligence.

What are examples of solicitor negligence?

Examples of solicitor negligence may include giving incorrect legal advice, missing limitation dates for legal proceedings, failing to adhere to court directions, failing to act in a proper manner that causes you a financial loss, or claiming against the incorrect party.

These situations may warrant a professional negligence claim being investigated. If you have a grievance against your solicitor but have not suffered any financial loss resulting from their actions, you should make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman Service.

How long do I have to make a professional negligence claim against a solicitor?

To make a professional negligence claim against a solicitor, you must be within the ‘professional negligence limitation period’. The general rule is that if you want to make professional negligence claims against solicitors, this needs to be done within 6 years of the negligent act taking place. This is unless you can prove that negligence was only discovered at a later date, in which case an extension may be sought, up to 3 years from the date of discovery.