Do Lawyers Lie about Settlements?
Lawyers find themselves in an incredibly interesting position. They are meant to be officers of the court, while relentlessly representing their clients. Having been appointed, the expectation is that they can balance both sets of requirements from an efficiency and an ethical standpoint.
Much of the conduct that is expected is defined in the American Bar Association (ABA) Rules of Professional Conduct. This is so because while the said rules are non-binding, the state of Iowa (and just about every other state) has not deviated far from these provisions, which means they stand by extension.
This set of rules indicates that lawyers are not knowingly supposed to make false statements to the courts. Any evidence offered that is known to be misleading also falls under this umbrella.
However, this extends beyond the actions that the accident lawyers may take. To this end, lawyers are expected to ensure that their clients are not lying to the court either. Falsification of evidence, counseling witnesses to testify untruthfully, telling a client to take a payout less than they deserve etc. are all grounds for misrepresentation penalties.
These and other situations in which a lawyer would lie constitute legal malpractice. While the use of this term applies to different contexts based on the person using it, it is specifically meant to speak to lawyers and misconduct that would indicate an abuse of their positions.
While not impossible, it is very unlikely that your own attorney is going to be the one trying to pull the wool over your eyes with a misrepresentation of facts. The more probable occurrence is that the opposing legal counsel attempts to do this.
Legal malpractice is not too far removed from medical malpractice where the law is concerned. Both can lead to pain and suffering and are grounds for substantial claims, once the adequate proof is present.
While settlement hearings are confidential, they are not without governance if the guidelines that indicate how they should work are not followed. Even in one of these hearings, a lawyer who decides to misrepresent facts could be cited for fraud upon the court.
How to Proceed After Suspected Legal Malpractice
You need to understand that legal malpractice is not necessarily a comfortable space for attorneys. Therefore, it's not outside of the realm of possibility that the one who represented you does not necessarily want to aid in navigating such a matter.
Be that as it may, talking to this legal professional is fundamental in proceeding effectively. Remember that as your representative, this attorney has the benefit of familiarity with the case and how it unfolded.
Taking advantage of this in conjunction with an understanding after the law should make for a sound legal opinion. That means you should be able to get accurate information based on legal opinion about the truthfulness and intent of the opposing attorney’s statement.
Note that the awareness of the attorney making the statement is a key factor here. It only constitutes malpractice if done on purpose. Legal professionals must act based on the information that their clients have provided.
Those whom they represent may provide incorrect information about the situation. Of course, such a situation makes inaccurate statements by the legal professional both unintentional and unavoidable. Lawyers depend on their clients for some information that would be impossible to attain otherwise.
If you want to pursue a legal malpractice case for the acts that an opposing counsel would have carried out, the conversation with the attorney who initially represented you is a great place to start. From there, you may be inclined to attempt to retain the same attorney again, or to look for another.
Representation for Legal Malpractice
You may be entitled to compensation because of legal malpractice. Additionally, you need a professional and experienced attorney who is not uncomfortable in tackling these kinds of sensitive situations.
In Des Moines, you would be hard-pressed to find a more qualified team than that which is present, add Tom Fowler Law. You get the successful combination of a highly qualified team with tremendous experience.
There is a targeted focus on ensuring that you get what you deserve, based on the negative implications and potential pain and suffering that the misinformation may have led to. Reach out today to schedule a consultation so the parameters of your case can be understood for appropriate recommendations and action.