Professional bodies play a big part in our lives. Whenever we have a problem whether it be; feeling unwell, financial issues, problems with our teeth or our pets are ill, we will seek out the help of those professionals.
All people are fallible and occasionally a professional will make a mistake. So if your professional indicates there may be a problem or you suspect there is one you face the prospect of having to criticise them and seek financial redress.
Making a professional negligence claim, whether it’s suing solicitors or bringing a claim against any other professional advisor, can be a daunting prospect. To confront someone with whom you have placed trust is not easy.
Bringing a claim can be time consuming and a final result not known for months or years. To find a specialist lawyer who explains what is involved to you without a lot of jargon is essential. You can lose confidence in all professionals because a mistake has been made so that trust has to be built back up.
Most law firms have websites with information about who you might see for advice – if they don’t even have a website, then you should think very, very hard indeed about whether to instruct them – they will almost certainly not be professional negligence claim specialists. You do need to make sure you get somebody specializing in professional negligence work. If you ring or email them after reading a bit about them it seems easier to contact them rather than make a cold call. Using email is helpful too. Most law firms who have actually made it into the 21st century will publish the email contact details of their lawyers.
You need also to act quickly. Any professional negligence claim has to brought within a set time period or it becomes barred by Statute. There are different time limits that apply for the type of claim that you might bring. It is the most frustrating advice I give when I tell someone that they did have a perfectly valid claim but it is now too late to bring it.
The professional being criticised will normally be insured (for Solicitors, for example, a minimum £2m , professional indemnity insurance is mandatory – so when suing solicitors, for example, recovering compensation if your claim is successful should not be a problem). Ss a result, any claim will be defended by an expert team of lawyers. While you may wish to make a claim yourself, particularly when it comes to suing solicitors, it will pay you to find a lawyer that specialises in the claim you are bringing.
Your lawyer will advise you on how you might fund the costs of bringing a claim. You may have an insurance policy that can meet some or all of the costs or your lawyer may offer a No Win No fee funding arrangement.