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California Legal Malpractice Questions & Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Personal Injury, Landlord - Tenant and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Can a hotel terminate your stay by force with no just cause?

My children and I have had an extended stay at The Residence Inn by Marriott in Oxnard, California for over eight months. I have remained current with all charges and fees and have spend over $70,000 in room and amenity charges We have recieved no complaints from the hotel regarding our stay. A... Read more »

William John Light answered on Jul 19, 2019

They can rent the room to whomever they want. You have no right to force them to allow you to stay. Find another hotel. There are plenty in Oxnard that are willing to take your money.

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2 Answers | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Civil Litigation, Civil Rights and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Attorney on probation with BAR and screwing up to say the least. What are the responsibilities of the Court to protect?

Need a Malpractice Lawyer?

Kenneth Sisco answered on Jul 9, 2019

Almost none. Your first line of defense is you. Find another attorney, and have him help you decide if the matter is ripe for a malpractice suit.

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1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: I live in California. Question re SOL deadline

If I missed filing a Malpractice complaint against my former attorney by one day (ie. SOL expired on a Monday and today is Tuesday) would you still file the complaint and hope for the best? Does the SOL for Malpractice action against an Attorney expire 1 year after the Attorney's last day of... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on Jun 11, 2019

The answer to the question, "When does the statute of limitation expire?" is a fairly easy one, although there could be questions about that too. Generally, it depends on what date it began to run; there are many complications as to that question. Typically, as in almost all cases, the SOL begins... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: If you have not received your settlement in 70 days or real news in the status of the settlement? more details below

Mediation is over and If you have not received your settlement in 70 days or real news in the status of the settlement? What should I ask if my lawyer for proof his working on it or has the money already something on paper? I already ask what is the status of my settlement in a letter the... Read more »

William John Light answered on Jun 11, 2019

You are entitled to be updated and know the status of your case. However, it is not unusual for settlements to take weeks, or months to complete.

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2 Answers | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: I live in California. We have a questions about a legal malpractice claim against two attorneys.

I live in California. We have a legal malpractice claim against two attorneys, one who abandoned our underlying case prior to trial (no Arb in Retainer Agr) & the other who took the case through trial & lost the case (Retainer Agr has Arb clause). The SOL deadline related to the action against the... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on Jun 11, 2019

There is a split among attorneys as to whether you should combine serial malpractitioners; it all comes down to specific facts. Indeed, under some circumstances, you may, at some point, be forced to consolidate the two cases. Without knowing more, I would not mention the 2nd attorney in the suit... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Is a lawyer allowed to interplead your settlement for a non lawyer?

My old attorney held back half of my settlement for a "lien" his employee claimed for working on my case. The lawyer was paid in full. Despite my not wanting him to hold my settlement he waited 6 months to deposit them with the court. Now he is suing me for the interplead fees and the release of... Read more »

William John Light answered on Jun 6, 2019

If a third party has a lien, which is either created by contract, by statute, or by equity, then the attorney has to either hold the money until the lien is resolved, or to interplead it. It is unclear why an attorney's "employee" would have a lien. Nevertheless, to only safe way to resolve... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: I want my case file from previous attorney (who I plan to sue for legal malpractice)

And I am going in there to hand deliver (with a witness going with me) a letter asking for it to be ready in 24 hours and that I am even willing to provide a copier to assist....anything to help him comply in 24 hours....is that legal? And can I videotape the response if I am in his law firms... Read more »

Dale S. Gribow answered on May 28, 2019

YOU CERTAINLY HAVE A RIGHT TO YOUR FILE.

HOWEVER, A CASE THAT IS 5 YEARS OLD IS PROBABLY A VERY THICK FILE AND IT REASONABLY SHOULD TAKE MORE THAN 24 HOURS TO COPY IT.

IT MIGHT BE A GOOD IDEA TO RETAIN A NEW LAWYER FIRST IN CASE THERE ARE ANY COURT APPEARANCES OR MOTIONS THAT NEED...
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1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice and Wrongful Death for California on

Q: Case was an unlimited wrongful death suit against 1 civillian and I busisness who had legal duty to protect sister from

Lawyer doesn't want to honor our contract because he got 2 cases that would've been profitable tossed out of court by cancelling all depositions. Now he don't want to continue with case against my sister's killer because he knows this person has no assets. But we signed a contract.

Peter N. Munsing answered on May 23, 2019

Depends on the two cases being "tossed" and the reasons for them. Contact a member of CAOC who handles legal malpractice cases.

1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: does a defense legal counsel filing of false declaration in opposition to a summary judgment motion for summary judgment

Can an attorney who conceals the fact that the attorney has a relationship with the attorney tolls the statute of limitation and never made a written notice of the relationship required under Rule 3-310.

Kenneth Sisco answered on May 18, 2019

There are too many missing facts here. I think I can assume that you are talking about a conflicting relationship between your attorney and the opposing attorney. But, was it your attorney who made the false statement, or the opposing attorney? and did the statement have anything to do with the... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Constitutional Law, Consumer Law, Criminal Law and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Is it legal to negotiate a monetary settlement in exchange for not filing criminal misconduct of an attorney?

I believe negotiations of filing/not filing a complaint with the State Bar is not an option.....but is it legal to negotiate a settlement vs. reporting to law enforcement if that appears to be the only way to get financial compensation from being wronged?

And I am not just money hungry.... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on May 16, 2019

I believe what you are suggesting is the essence of extortion, or blackmail, and you want to stay away from that. But all is not lost. For almost every crime there is a civil counterpart; just ask O.J. Simpson. As far as I know, there is no sanction for demanding compensation, or you will file... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: If I found forgery on my case file for important documents that needed my personal signature how should I follow up?

I have found on several documents in my case file that has my signature Forged on them. I know how I write my signature and it looks like someone the the lawyer office wrote it but I can’t be sure who it was but I know that it was not done by me. Any help will be extremely helpful!

William John Light answered on May 13, 2019

Some retainer agreements give a Power of Attorney to execute certain documents. If you contend that you would not have signed the documents, and that you have been damaged in some way, contact the State Bar.

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1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Are you legally required to give an officer an ID if he has not articulated or accused you of committing a crime

William John Light answered on Apr 24, 2019

Police may obtain the identification of someone whom they reasonably suspect of having committed a crime. If there is no reasonable suspicion that a crime has been committed, is being committed, or is about to be committed, an individual is not required to provide identification. Different rules... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: I have question. I have wrongful termination and discrimination

Had hairs attorney and sign agreement 40% than file complaint DFEH we have right to sue, and in the letter said have within 30 days to file complaint at EEOC but the attorney didn’t, the want me sign another agreement more high then we passed the time to file complaint at EEOC and when I ask why... Read more »

Neil Pedersen answered on Apr 18, 2019

I am sorry but your post is not very clear. I will try to provide some guidance.

An employee who is terminated (i.e., discriminated against) because of their membership in a protected class who worked in California has options about which law he or she wishes to use to enforce their...
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2 Answers | Asked in Business Law, Consumer Law and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: surplus funds due to be collected.Some attorney lied said i hire her but i dont know this person.I havent seen contract

What is California statue of limitations on a case like this? And does this ever happen to other people or just to me

Scott Richard Kaufman answered on Apr 18, 2019

You may want to WRITE to this person to see what is up?

Most (honest) attorneys will respond swiftly with an explanation.

Failure to respond timely may show s/he knows they did

something wrong. Then you may take it to the next level, like

opening up a BAR inquiry?

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1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice and Probate for California on

Q: I was executer of estate and my attorney discouraged me from submitting my creditors claim and assets not protected help

The order of probate was not followed the statuary fee way over exceeded the amount in assets the attorney met with the other side not just the attorney the actual people the decedent owned property we received nothing the decedent was in a very lucrative industry with 2 other partners one partner... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on Apr 5, 2019

Statutory fees are paid first, so, if statutory fees exceed the value of assets, filing a creditor's claim would make no difference. If property was wrongly excluded from the estate; that is a completely different problem.

3 Answers | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Someone has made themselves my legal representative without informing me without my consent, what can I do about it?

I’ve never had my competence under question or any psychological evaluation for anything. I’m of sound mind and fully capable of making my own informed decisions. Someone has appointed themselves legal representation for me and has basically been signing away my life. What can be done about... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on Apr 5, 2019

There are obviously a lot of missing facts here. If you do not know the person who is "pretending" to represent you, your first call should be to the police. Your second call(s) should be to the person(s) who has been contacted by this "imposter." If you do know the person, you should ask that... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Legal Malpractice and Probate for California on

Q: Its hard to explain my issue.There's a deed recorded,I say its not legal. Its my house but How to exit probate court?...

I say the deed is not legal because deed shows the Grantor is an estate that I used to be executor and only heir but this estate had ended, it was CLOSED years before this "bogus" deed was signed and recorded. So whoever tried to pull a fast one on me by recording a deed without my knowledge didnt... Read more »

Kenneth Sisco answered on Apr 1, 2019

There are still far too many facts missing to provide a really definitive answer. But, ultimately, if not settled, a lawsuit will need to be filed to cancel the "bogus" deed and quiet title. A forged deed is not merely voidable, but it is absolutely void. If someone forged your name, and you can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gov & Administrative Law and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: How do I obtain full disclosure on my case, specifically discovery ?

I’ve never been arrested. I want every detail from both sides from beginning to end. I believe I was kept in the dark about many things.

William John Light answered on Mar 26, 2019

Unclear on what type of case this is. After discharge (firing) of your attorney, you are entitled to your file from your attorney, except the attorney work product. The return of the client’s files is covered in RPC 3-700(D)(1) which states:

“A member whose employment has terminated...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Personal Injury, Constitutional Law and Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: Is a text Message considered valid factual evidence?

My friend texted me and tipped me off about someone who wanted to physically hurt me seriously and they follow through

Dale S. Gribow answered on Mar 26, 2019

MORE INFO NEEDED.

YOU WANT TO SAVE THAT FOR YOUR LAWYER WHO CAN GET MILEAGE OUT OF IT

1 Answer | Asked in Legal Malpractice for California on

Q: My lawyer had no malpractice insurance. I have a case but no attorney will take my case because of this. Any pro bono?

I lost my foundation case against the flipper and was ordered to pay 110K in attorney fees. Found out through hiring a Real estate lawyer that there was legal malpractice committed. We filed an appeal but both lawyers (he is still on our case) state that we need to drop it because we might incur... Read more »

William John Light answered on Mar 25, 2019

If you lost money due to theft or dishonest, you can make a claim with the State Bar Client Security Fund:

calbar.ca.gov/Public/Complaints-Claims/Client-Security-Fund

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