Pleasanton, TX asked in Legal Malpractice for Texas

Q: Can I sue for legal malpractice

I paid a lawyer for a land lord tenant situation to represent me a dpta case and landlord dispute. I sign a contract of aggressive representation and 10 hrs of legal work for an amount paid .I only got a 40 min phone call to be told he can't represent me or nothing but this happen after I paid the retainer cost and never got my money back and he said that nothing he can do .can you please help me in this situation or point me into the right direction.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Joel Gary Selik
Joel Gary Selik
  • Legal Malpractice Lawyer
  • Las Vegas, NV

A: Based on these facts you have a case for a fee dispute and possibly malpractice or even fraud.

Consult with experienced legal malpractice attorneys in your state. Use Justia search to find an attorney.

John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
  • Frisco, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: While it is possible that you may have legitimate grounds to dispute the fee, you should not necessarily assume that the 40 minute phone call was the only legal work performed by the attorney and his law firm on your behalf.

Depending upon the facts of your situation, the attorney may have reviewed and/or analyzed your lease and other documents provided to him or obtained by him on your behalf. Depending on how complex your situation is, he may have had to perform a fact investigation or legal research to determine whether you can file a DTPA case under the facts of your situation and what the prospects of you winning such a case may be. 10 hours of legal work performing pre-suit due diligence would not be unreasonable.

If you didn't provide him any documents and he didn't perform any investigative or legal research, and you actually paid him for 10 hours of legal work (approx. $2,500 - 5,000, depending on the attorney's hourly rate) for a simple 40-minute phone call, you likely have a bona fide fee dispute that you can make.

Before doing anything else, I recommend that you write to the attorney and request a itemized statement or invoice for professional services rendered to you. That should help you and any other attorney you consult determine whether the amount you paid was reasonable for the services rendered.

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