Lawyers make mistakes. Accountants make mistakes. Real estate brokers make mistakes. We hold professionals accountable. Our attorneys have worked for some of the nation’s biggest professional liability defenders. Now we bring that knowledge to the plaintiffs’ side, prosecuting malpractice cases big and small. We know how to settle these cases and we know how to win, from the inside.

Real Estate Brokers and Agents

California law requires sellers in the vast majority of residential real estate transactions, to disclose known defects in writing. Cal. Civ. Code § 1102. One of the most common errors made by real estate brokers and agents is to fail to make a proper disclosure. Mandatory disclosures include revealing the presence of lead paint, a death on the premises less than three years prior, id. § 1710.2, pest infestations, drainage issues, encroachments, easements, neighborhood noise, boundary disputes, bad neighbors, and lawsuits affecting the property. Id. § 1102.6.

Accountant Malpractice

In general accountants get sued for two categories of mistakes: either they make a mistake in preparing tax returns, or, in performing an audit they failed to catch a fraud or embezzlement. Mistakes in preparing tax returns can usually be remedied simply by amending the returns. Audit errors, however, present a more challenging case. Jurors tend to sympathize with clients not the accountants. And since many of the actuarial issues presented at trial are hopelessly obscure, technical, and boring, jurors will often default to finding liability against a CPA simply for lacking charm.

Attorney Malpractice

Lawyers enjoy huge systemic advantages when they are sued for malpractice. Arbitrators are lawyers. Judges are lawyers. These decision-makers might easily sympathize with the lawyer-defendant before the client-victim.

As a second advantage, lawyers can and do sometimes represent themselves, leveraging cost efficiencies while the former clients hemorrhage litigation expenses. In the alternative, many lawyers enjoy an insurance defense war-chest that orients them toward fighting longer and harder than they otherwise might, had they borne the risks of litigation directly.

Third, the statute of limitations to sue a lawyer, at one year, is among the shortest of all California torts. Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 340.6 (“An action against an attorney for a wrongful act or omission, other than for actual fraud, arising in the performance of professional services shall be commenced within one year after the plaintiff discovers, or through the use of reasonable diligence should have discovered, the facts constituting the wrongful act or omission.

The statute of limitations begins to run: (1) when the client discovers, or should discover, the facts establishing the elements of his cause of action for legal malpractice, Genisman v. Carley, 29 Cal. App. 5th 45, 50 (2018), and (2) when the client sustains appreciable and actual harm, Budd v. Nixen, 6 Cal. 3d 195, 201 (1971). The statute shall be tolled, however, as long at the attorney continues to represent the client. See Kelly v. Orr, 243 Cal. App. 4th 940, 948 (2016); Laclette v. Galindo, 184 Cal. App. 4th 919, 927 (2010) (“An attorney's representation of a client ordinarily ends when the client discharges the attorney or consents to a withdrawal, the court consents to the attorney's withdrawal, or upon completion of the tasks for which the client retained the attorney.”).

Thus, typically, the statute will begin to run when three events have occurred: (1) the client is aware of the malfeasance, and (2) has suffered actual harm as a consequence of the malfeasance, Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 340.6(a)(1), and (3) the attorney has withdrawn or been discharged, Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 340.6(a)(2).


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