Professional negligence claims

Everybody can make mistakes from time to time.  If you feel that a mistake has been made by a professional that you were paying to provide you with a service or advice and that you have suffered a loss as a result, Birkett Long can help you recover compensation.

We have successfully resolved negligence claims for both individuals and businesses who have been let down by hired professionals. We provide clear and practical advice that is aimed at finding an effective long-term resolution through negotiation, arbitration or mediation.

The term ‘professional negligence’ covers a wide range of areas, which can even include being given poor legal advice. Other examples that can be included are:

  • The mishandling or management of an estate or trust
  • A professional missing an important deadline
  • Receiving poor or invalid financial advice
  • The incorrect drafting of a will
  • A tradesperson causing damage as a result of their work

Our professional negligence lawyers can help you claim compensation in a range of professional negligence cases, both small and large. This has included everyone from tradespeople, to accountants, IFAs, lawyers, insurance brokers and many more.

Do I have a claim for negligence?

There are three things that you will need to establish in order to bring a claim for negligence:

  1. That the person in question owed you a duty of care;
  2. That they breached their duty to you (i.e. they acted negligently); and
  3. That their breach actually caused you to suffer loss.

The relevant test for establishing a breach of duty is whether the professional fell below the standard of a reasonably competent professional operating in that field.

What sort of claims can we help with?

  • Claims against surveyors and valuers
    • Negligent house surveys
    • Negligent valuations
  • Claims against solicitors and barristers
    • Missed time limits/limitation dates
    • Incorrect advice
  • Claims against accountants
    • Incorrect tax advice
    • Missed time limits/tax penalties
    • Negligent valuations of shares or companies
  • Claims against architects
    • Negligent drawings or designs
    • Incorrect advice about planning issues
  • Claims against doctors, dentists and other medical professionals (dealt with by our dedicated clinical negligence solicitors)
  • Claims against estate agents
    • Negligent valuations
    • Negligent letting or property management services
  • Claims against financial advisers
    • Negligent financial and investment advice
  • Claims against insurance brokers
    • Failing to arrange adequate insurance or comply with instructions

Would you deal with claims against other solicitors?

Yes. We and our fellow professionals understand that things can occasionally go wrong. People that suffer loss as a result need independent legal advice and we have no problem with advising clients about possible claims against fellow solicitors. Generally, such claims would be dealt with by the professional’s insurers in any event and everyone understands that it is nothing personal.

How do I sue someone for negligence?

Firstly, we would need to take your detailed instructions as to what has happened and why you feel that you have been let down. We would then need to investigate the matter. This may include reviewing the available correspondence and documentation, which may include obtaining a copy of the file held by the relevant professional. It may also be necessary to seek expert evidence from an independent expert practising in the relevant field as to whether the professional in question has acted negligently.

It is then a case of complying with the Pre-Action Protocol for Professional Negligence, which provides for the claim to be set out in correspondence, the professional to have the opportunity to investigate and respond, and then a period of negotiation with a view to seeking to resolve the dispute, or at least narrow the issues, before issuing proceedings in court.

Will it cost a lot of money and can I recover my costs?

Many professional negligence claims are resolved by agreement during the pre-action protocol stage without the need for proceedings to be issued. We would always look to recover your costs as part of any such agreement. Even if it does become necessary to issue proceedings, very few claims that are issued ever get all the way to trial, with most settling at some point along the way.  Where we believe that you have a good claim we are always willing to discuss acting for you on a ‘no win no fee’ or under a conditional fee agreement.

Will I have to go to court?

Very few claims ever get to court. Most are resolved by negotiation without proceedings ever being issued. Of those where claims are issued, most of those will be settled by negotiation without you having to go to court. Lots of professional negligence claims are resolved by mediation, which can be a very effective way of reaching a settlement and recovering compensation without the need to go to court. We have lots of experience of successfully resolving disputes at mediations.

Why choose our professional negligence lawyers?

At Birkett Long, we are proud of the reputation we have developed by providing expert guidance on professional negligence claims for our clients. We handle all types of professional negligence claims including issues with insurance policies, poor advice from lawyers, misconduct from medical professionals and more.

We make your professional negligence claim as simple as possible and, wherever possible, we will aim for an early resolution on good financial terms. We will do everything possible to help you avoid a long, drawn-out case so you do not experience any unneeded stress or unwarranted costs.

To achieve the best results, our professional negligence lawyers can offer alternative methods of dispute resolution such as mediation, as it can sometimes to help to reduce associated legal expenses.

Should your professional negligence dispute require litigation, our team has years of trial experience and you can have full confidence in our ability to pursue the matter, while always bearing in mind the cost implications.

Get in touch with our professional negligence solicitors

If you think that you have received poor advice, or that you have lost out as a result of the actions of your professional adviser, give our friendly team of professional negligence solicitors in Chelmsford, Basildon or Colchester a call.

Professional negligence solicitors in Colchester - 01206 217300
Professional negligence solicitors in Chelmsford - 01245 453800
Professional negligence solicitors in Basildon - 01268 244144

Contact a member of the team in BasildonColchester or Chelmsford, or complete our enquiry form, to discuss how our professional negligence lawyers can help you.

Birkett Long’s expert team includes qualified mediators and a Deputy District Judge. We are experts in resolving disputes and recovering compensation for our clients.