You have certain expectations when you hire an attorney in Pennsylvania. In short, you expect him or her to do the best job possible to help you win your case. Lawyers have certain ethical and professional standards they must maintain, and when an attorney does not live up to those standards, you have the right to sue for legal malpractice.
The American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys explains legal malpractice is when an attorney does not carry out his or her duty which results in a loss or negative outcome for you. There are specific characteristics of a malpractice issue. You cannot sue for malpractice just because the attorney did not get the result you want or because you lost your case. There has to be evidence of actual wrongdoing on the part of your attorney.
You must get a negative outcome in your case that results in significant damages. You need to show that the negligence or wrongdoing on the part of your attorney led to this outcome and the damages. When it comes to the damages, they should be something serious because the cost of litigation is quite high, so a lawsuit for minor damages does not make sense.
You also must show the attorney violated a professional standard. There are quite a few standards that may apply. For example, if your attorney missed a deadline and that led to you losing your case, this would qualify as a violation.
Proving your malpractice case can be tough, so you need to be sure you have strong evidence to show that your attorney did not follow professional standards. Remember this is a requirement to bring such a case as not being happy with the outcome of your case is not a valid reason. This information is for education and is not legal advice.