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Three Essential Steps After a Legal Blunder

The Recorder

Mistakes happen. Tax liens during a title search are missed. A lawsuit isn't filed within the statute of limitations. An attorney fails to follow the right procedure for an appeal.

The normal instinct is to simply move forward and try to fix it. If the problem can't be fixed, many lawyers choose to either ignore it hoping it just goes away, or worse yet, fall on the sword for something that may not even be malpractice. More often than not, these actions create problems worse than the mistake itself.

There is a better way. The first step is to stop. Then, take three simple steps to minimize risks and create a solid platform for moving forward, possibly fixing the problem. These steps were described by a court recently in a legal malpractice case involving a straightforward mistake. In that case, the attorney used the wrong appellate procedure in an attempt to appeal a contempt order in a domestic relations case.

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