If you have ever been involved in a legal case, you know just how important deadlines can be. When it comes to the law, missing a deadline can mean the difference between your case moving forward and your case being stuck in the mud.
As a client, it is helpful for you to know your case’s deadlines. But meeting these deadlines is not necessarily your responsibility. The burden of following deadlines lies with your attorney. As your legal representation, your lawyer has an obligation to be aware of and meet all the relevant deadlines of his clients’ cases.
The consequence of missing deadlines
Just about every jurisdiction has strict deadlines when it comes to legal cases. There are discovery deadlines, trial deadlines, statutes of limitations, filing deadlines and more. Missing one of these deadlines can have a variety of penalties. Sometimes, the consequence may be a fine and a delay in your case. But in other situations, missing a deadline could be the nail in your case’s coffin. Many courts will not allow a case, no matter how important it is to you, to proceed if it misses the mandated deadlines.
Attorneys and deadlines
Every lawyer must understand the importance of deadlines. Meeting deadlines is a very basic responsibility of all lawyers. No matter how seemingly busy your attorney is, it is his professional obligation to handle your case in a timely manner and meet every deadline.
When a lawyer misses a deadline, it can indicate a form of legal malpractice called negligence. When a lawyer is negligent, you may be able to file a legal malpractice lawsuit and receive compensation for your legal fees and other damages. Sometimes, court verdicts that were influenced by a lawyer’s malpractice can even be thrown out. Your case deserves a fair shot by an attorney who meets all his deadlines.