Attorneys should be held to the highest possible standard in every case they work. With large sums of money on the line, from high-stake business interests to multi-million dollar settlements, your lawyer needs to serve your best interest.
Typically, there is a one-year statute of limitations for legal malpractice claims in California, but the statute is tolled (frozen) while the attorney still represents the client. Thus, in many situations, the client has one year from the end of the representation to bring a legal malpractice lawsuit.
Anytime an attorney represents more than one client in a matter where there is a potential for a conflict of interest, it is critical that the attorney obtain informed written consent to proceed with the representation pursuant to CRPC, Rule 3-310. Failure to evaluate and properly address conflicts of interest can result in disgorgement of fees. See, Sheppard, Mullin v. J-M Manufacturing (2016) 244 Cal.App.4th 590. Boilerplate conflict waivers are not sufficient. The attorney must provide "informed written consent" which requires a description of the factual scenario creating the potential (or actual) conflict of interest. It has always been important to evaluate conflicts of interest, but now there is clear precedent supporting an order for disgorgement of fees.