Professional Negligence – Have you been accused of professional negligence?
Jarmans’ Professional Negligence team guide businesses and individuals through periods of distress.
For professionals operating across all sectors, there is always a risk that you will be at the receiving end of an accusation of professional negligence. In all cases, such accusations should be treated as a very serious matter.
No matter what profession you work in, you are considered to have a duty of care, which is an obligation to provide a quality of service which would be expected from a professional in your industry. If something does go wrong and your client or customer incurs losses, they will invariably seek to put things right financially.
In order for a professional negligence claim to be successful the Court must see that three criteria have been met:
- Breach of Duty of Care – did you act in your client’s best interests? It will need to be proved that you breached your duty of care by acting below your level of expected professional competency.
- Loss – Were losses incurred by your client? If there were no losses, a claim cannot be made.
- Causation – If there is evidence that you did breach your duty of care and you client is claiming for a financial loss, it has to be proved that their loss was caused by your breach. If the breach arises from a separate issue, the claim won’t succeed.
If you have had a claim of professional negligence made against you, Jarmans Solicitors strongly recommend that you immediately obtain professional legal advice. Speaking to a solicitor provides you with the opportunity to consider your claim neutrally. Sometimes errors and accidents do happen and accepting that something may have gone wrong at an early stage could save you significant costs in the future.
Pre-Action Protocol for Professional Negligence
A Pre-Action Protocol for Professional Negligence is a process which enables both parties to engage in detailed correspondence about the claim with the end goal of avoiding litigation. The complainant should initially notify you of their claim and then send detailed documentation which supports it.
Upon receipt of the claim, you have 21 days to acknowledge it and 3 months from your acknowledgement to respond in substantive detail.
If you are concerned that a client or customer has accused you of professional negligence, please contact our expert litigation department to discuss how to respond and avoid costly court fees.
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