In the increasingly litigious society in which we live, the incidents of attorneys being sued for malpractice has significantly increased. Attorneys practicing in the estate, trust, and guardianship arenas have not escaped this increasing scrutiny.
In most instances, a claim against an attorney arises out of the belief that the attorney has failed to uphold the standards expected of average attorneys practicing estates, trust, and guardianship. Said another way, the attorney provided a lower quality of service to his client than the average attorney is expected to provide. To prove a claim for malpractice, the plaintiff must offer evidence, among other things, from an expert attorney who practices extensively in the subject area of law. Conversely, to properly establish that an attorney has not failed to provide the proper quality of work, the attorney alleged to have committed malpractice must offer the opinions of an expert attorney in the subject matter.
F+B Managing Partner, Don Ford, has recently served as an expert in such a case. In that case, the attorney had represented a client in a contentious litigation matter in the probate court, and after the conclusion of the case, the attorney’s client sued him for malpractice alleging a long list of grievances against him. Mr. Ford was asked to offer his expert opinion as to the attorney’s conduct in handling the case. In particular, Mr. Ford was asked to draw on his extensive experience in handling complicated litigation in estate, trust, and guardianship cases to determine whether the attorney has failed to fulfill his duties correctly to his client.
The Court has yet to determine the ultimate outcome of the case, but Mr. Ford was honored to have been asked to help the Court in considering the issues.