Kansas Attorneys – How to Avoid Malpractice Complaints for Missed Deadlines

One of the biggest mistakes Kansas attorneys and law firms make is missing a client’s deadline, especially with failing to comply with the statutes of limitations in Kansas.  While attorneys try their best to ensure important deadlines are not missed, mistakes can happen and this can lead to a client filing a complaint with the Kansas Office of Disciplinary Administrator, or filing a complaint against your for legal malpractice.  Missing a client’s deadline is more prevalent in personal injury and tort law generally.  As an individual only has a certain period of time to file a lawsuit, it is imperative that plaintiff’s attorneys calendar when the deadline is for filing a lawsuit.

Most attorneys have an internal calendaring system that alerts them to particular deadlines.  If a client’s filing deadline is missed and the statute of limitations has run, a client may seek to file either a disciplinary complaint with the Kansas Office of Disciplinary Administrator, or seek to file a legal malpractice complaint against you.  If you have found yourself in this situation, you know just how devastating one small mistake can be.  More often than not, if you have made one calendaring mistake (or even just a few), your law license may not be at risk.  However, if you repeatedly miss client deadlines, your license may be at risk.

 What You Should Do to Avoid Missing Important Deadlines

In order to ensure your internal calendaring system is adequate to alert you to key deadlines, you should consider doing the following:

  • Have your calendaring system in both electronic form and paper form;
  • Designate one employee in your law practice to stay on top of client deadlines, reminding you well in advance to ensure you don’t miss a deadline (for example, if the statute of limitations for a potential personal injury lawsuit is coming up, your calendaring system should alert you to this deadline at least one month beforehand, with weekly reminders);
  • Keep your clients informed as to each deadline, so that your clients can also maintain a calendaring system; and
  • If you find your case load is too large to manage multiple client deadlines, consider referring some cases out, or rejecting some cases entirely.

As to the last point above, many attorneys (more often plaintiff’s attorneys), tend to take on more cases than they are able to handle.  This often occurs in small or solo law firms.  The more manageable your case load is, the more likely it is that you will be able to avoid missed deadlines.  Further, if you realize you have missed a deadline, you should alert your legal malpractice insurance carrier to ensure you have taken all steps necessary to document your error, and seek to remedy the situation.  Your insurance carrier will then know that there’s a slight chance action may be taken against you by your client.

 Contact the Sanger Law Office Today to Schedule a Free Consultation

If you are a Kansas attorney and you are facing disciplinary action that may put your law license at risk, you should speak with a Kansas professional license defense attorney as soon as possible. Kansas Attorney Malpractice Defense Lawyer Danielle Sanger of the Sanger Law Office dedicates her practice to defending professionals who are facing disciplinary action and/or the potential revocation of their professional licenses.  Danielle Sanger’s prior experience as Assistant Attorney General of Kansas helps her protect and advocate for her clients in a way that distinguishes her from other professional license defense attorneys.  To schedule a free consultation with Danielle Sanger to discuss your professional licensing matters, contact the Sanger Law Office today by calling (785) 979-4353.