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Has your solicitor let you down?

Solicitors have a professional duty to carry out their work with reasonable care and skill and if they fail to do this they may be found to be negligent and could be liable to you for any loss that you have suffered.

The law does not require solicitors to be perfect in all respects – rather, the standard solicitors must reach is that of a reasonably competent solicitor practising in their specialist area. Of course solicitors also need to recognise when an area is outside of their competence and if they try to increase their fee income by doing work that proves to be beyond that competence that can itself be enough for a negligence claim against the solicitor.

As well as this main duty solicitors also owe a multitude of other duties to clients, ranging from the duty to keep matters confidential to the right of clients not to suffer detriment due to an actual or perceived conflict of interest.

Solicitors must follow their client’s instructions, except in very limited circumstances (such as where that would be unlawful) and must seek specific authority for most transactions and revert to their client where there is any doubt. Therefore the retainer with a solicitor is not normally one where the solicitor can do whatever he deems to be correct without proper consultation with the client and the client’s approval.

Clearly in many matters there are also tight deadlines and the solicitor missing those deadlines can result in an automatic right to sue the solicitor for negligence.

There are strict time limits to bring a negligence claim against a solicitor so the sooner you consult us the better.