Head of Commercial Client Services and Head of Dispute Resolution
Unfortunately, it is sometimes the case that professionals or indeed others with specialist skills make mistakes.
It may be the case that the individual has accepted instructions from you that were beyond their area of expertise, they may have given improper advice or simply failed to take action on your behalf before a key deadline. If the mistake has caused you a loss, it may well be appropriate to consider a claim.
There are many complexities to bringing a claim against a professional. Here are just 5 examples.
Primarily, the matter of the personal reputation of the individual concerned may have a bearing on whether the claim is easily resolved (perhaps by an early offer to keep goodwill) or is more protracted (due to it being a point of principle for the individual concerned).
Secondly, most professionals will be insured which means that if liability can be established, then there is usually no worry about whether any compensation will be paid. However, insurers are expert at ensuring that they seek out all possible means of avoiding claims and there can also be problems if the professional has not notified their insurers of the claim in accordance with the requirements of the insurance policy.
Thirdly, just because a professional has made an error, does not immediately mean that professional negligence can be established. In particular, the test to be applied is more general namely whether the professional has acted in a way that no competent professional in their field would find acceptable.
Fourthly, to bring a successful claim you have to prove that the error or mistake caused the loss to you. Sometimes, there can be other factors which have caused the problem you have identified which makes it difficult to establish your claim.
Finally, it is important to note that it is frequently possible to take steps after the mistake has been identified to recover your position. Specialist advice should therefore be immediately sought as to what steps should be taken to mitigate your loss.
We have experience of bringing claims against the following professionals: