Legal Malpractice and The Negligent Business Transaction in Massachusetts
Did you hire a business transaction lawyer and need a litigator? Some firms will refer you on to another attorney in the firm, or another firm. Some attorneys, however, who are either fearful of litigation or just don’t have the experience, act negligently, and lose their clients’ rights, and monies!
Example of Business Transaction Case Gone Bad Due to Failure to Litigate
We represented a client who was a victim of legal malpractice in a negligent business transaction by an attorney in Massachusetts. Our client owned a taxi medallion and she wanted to sell it. She hired an attorney who had experience with taxi medallion transactions. It should be a simple process if you own a medallion, and you have a buyer.
Our client had some problems in selling the medallion that were related to some prior transactions; her prior business experience. Her lawyer said he could help. And he charged her some money and she worked with him to get it done. But he didn’t get it done. There was a problem because the City of Boston refused to allow the transfer. And she kept saying to her lawyer, “I think you need to file suit against the city of Boston because they’re not moving forward. They’re not letting this happen.” What should be a simple, straight forward, transaction, was stuck. When you have a buyer and a seller, the city must go through a process to rubber stamp it the transaction, but they refused to do so. And the lawyer neglected to file suit.
Since he needed to file suit to get it done, and he didn’t file suit. He simply did not get the job done. There are a lot of lawyers who are good at business transactions, but they’re not good at litigating and vice versa. You have to figure out if your lawyer is being effective. In this case, the business transaction lawyer was ineffective.
Client Hired a Second Lawyer to Get Transaction Done – But First Lawyer Interfered
Our client hired a second lawyer and he got it done very quickly. The sale of the taxi medallion transaction went through as soon as the second lawyer filed suit. The City knew it would loose, so they resolved the problem by allowing the transaction. The second attorney was paid by the hour, did the work, and got the transaction completed.
However, when the first attorney got the money from the sale, instead of sending a bill for any time beyond the initial retainer, he wanted to switch to a contingent fee! He wanted tens of thousands of dollars more than the fee agreement would have allowed! Thus, he tried to switch the terms of the agreement where he would take a huge sum of money for doing ineffective work.
Client Gets Her Money Back After Retaining Burns & Jain
The client came to us and we secured the file, researched the case and sent a 93A Consumer Protection Demand to the attorney. We argued that his dealings with her were not what they should be. That he was ineffective, that he was violating the rules of professional conduct by changing the terms of the fee agreement, and that he was withholding her money unfairly. We worked with his insurance defense attorney, and we worked with the mediator. The damages were complicated because of the many years of “work” but we insisted that none of it should be billed as none of it was beneficial. We received FULL DAMAGES for our client.
We got the case resolved relatively quickly because we pointed out that he had behaved dishonestly. He had behaved unethically, and he was more of a transaction attorney than a litigation attorney. And this was a litigation case. It needed litigation. It was not that hard to achieve once it was litigated her second attorney.
Call Burns & Jain for a Free Legal Consultation
If you have a problem with a business transaction, give Burns & Jain a call. If you have a problem with an attorney who is not returning your retainer monies, call Burns & Jain. The malpractice lawyers are very effective; they are very aggressive; and, they care about their clients! They will get the job done.
Call Attorney Neil Burns and Attorney Roshan Jain, 617-227-7423.