Professional negligence

Lawyers and legal professionals

Legal negligence

Has a lawyer's incompetence caused you financial loss?

Lawyers and legal professionals have a duty of care and a responsibility to uphold a reasonable standard and skill when acting on your behalf. If you have concerns about the way a lawyer or legal professional acted in a matter, you should firstly speak to them. Failing that, you can also report their failings to the Legal Services Commission.

If you have suffered financial loss because of a substandard or negligent provision of services, Gibbs Wright can help you to hold them accountable for their actions.

Legal negligence

Examples of negligence by a lawyer or legal professional

  • Poor drafting of legal documents including financial agreements and contracts
  • Dishonesty or fraud
  • Excessive or unreasonable charging of legal fees
  • Unreasonable delays or failure to act in time before limitation periods take effect
  • Failure to adequately advise on legal consequences
  • Under-settling a claim
  • Inaccuracies in naming correct defendants or plaintiffs
  • False advice regarding the effect of legislation

Have you been impacted by a the negligent actions of a legal professional?

At Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers, we offer an initial no-cost, obligation-free consultation to help you understand your options. We’re here to fight for you.


What is legal negligence?

A lawyer or legal professional will not necessarily have acted negligently simply because they have made an error in judgement. However, what is considered “reasonable care and skill”, and what will amount to negligence, will vary from case to case depending on the circumstances surrounding the matter. Our lawyers at Gibbs Wright can assist you in determining legal negligence.

Professional negligence is when a professional owes a duty of care and breaches their responsibilities. Negligence also includes failing to give you correct advice, failing to give you advice on a certain issue, and failing to give you advice within a reasonable time (limitation periods).

To successfully prove a claim in legal negligence, you (a plaintiff) must establish that:

your lawyer or legal professional owed you a duty of care

your lawyer or legal professional breached their duty of care to you

as a result of your lawyer or legal professional's negligence, you have suffered financial loss, damage or other injury

If all the above elements are satisfied, a successful claim in professional negligence will generally entitle the plaintiff to claim compensation for any loss or damage suffered as a result of the negligence.

This will usually include legal costs or other professional services expenses reasonably incurred in the process of establishing a professional negligence claim, and may occasionally also include potential future financial losses or expenses that are likely to accrue as a direct result of the negligence.

Professional negligence lawyers

How can Gibbs Wright help?

In most cases, our professional negligence lawyers will make every effort to settle your matter through negotiations. This negotiation is typically with the legal professional’s indemnity insurer and or legal representative.  If negotiations are not possible or fail to reach an adequate resolution, the matter can proceed to court.

Our litigation lawyers at Gibbs Wright understand the commercial strategies that lawyers and insurance companies employ in professional negligence claims, and we are capable of helping you through the negotiations and potential litigation that your case may face.

The bottom line is that if a professional’s negligent behaviour has impacted your life, we can be there to hold them accountable for their actions.

We are civil & commercial litigation lawyers

Why choose Gibbs Wright

There are hundreds of law firms in Queensland, but only a handful of them focus solely on litigation, and fewer still have the necessary skill and understanding to deliver commercially viable results for your matter.

At Gibbs Wright, we exclusively practice in litigation and dispute resolution, and as a client of ours, we want you to feel confident that you will receive unparalleled service and dedication for your dispute.

Our firm represents both plaintiffs and defendants across Queensland, in a wide range of litigation and dispute matters, and no case is too small, too large or too complex for our lawyers to take up the fight.

Whether you are an individual or one of Australia’s largest companies, your case deserves the same level of attention and dedication – and that is what we strive to provide to each and every client.

Commercially viable outcomes

High success rate

Brisbane-based Litigation Team

Dedicated litigation firm

Direct contact with your lawyer

Outstanding Client Satisfaction

Outstanding client satisfaction

Brisbane-based litigation team

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We help resolve professional negligence claims

Gibbs Wright acts on behalf of those who have suffered financially because of a professional's failure in their duty of care.

budget, financial, project, accounting

Negligent accounting

helmet, safety, construction

Negligent construction work

bill, tax, invoice

Financial advisor negligence

price, house, real, estate

Real estate negligence

The process

The claims process in legal negligence

Legal negligence claims are often highly complex matters. Lawyers and legal professionals have a duty of care to provide you with the best possible guidance they can. Due to the impact a legal negligence claim is likely to have on a lawyer or solicitor’s business and/or their reputation, most legal professionals that have been accused of professional negligence are likely to put up a strong fight to limit their personal liability as much as possible.

Accordingly, you will need to build a strong case with solid arguments – and you will need someone with vigorous negotiation skills to push your case forward and get you the results you want. It is important that you engage experienced litigation lawyers early on that will fight hard for you from the get-go so that you can be confident in the outcome of your case and know that you will receive the compensation you deserve for the loss and damage that you have suffered.

At Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers, we go above and beyond for our clients. You can rest assured that we will provide you with exceptional litigation and dispute resolution services at all stages of your matter – from initial negotiation stage all the way through the final stages of a courtroom trial – to ensure you are successful in your professional negligence claim.

If you are a legal professional and have been accused of professional negligence, this can be extremely damaging for your business and your professional reputation. Professional negligence claims are very serious matters, and the consequences of neglecting to properly defend a professional negligence claim can be severe.

Just because you have been accused, it does not mean that you are necessarily guilty of professional negligence, nor does it necessarily mean that the person accusing you of professional negligence automatically has the right to claim compensation from you.

If a professional negligence claim has been brought against you, it is important that you receive competent legal advice early on to limit any liability you might have.

At Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers, we have extensive experience with all different kinds of professional negligence claims. We have the skills and knowledge required to assist you in achieving a favourable resolution to your legal negligence dispute in order for you to salvage your professional reputation.

Legal negligence questions

Frequently Asked Questions

You can take legal action against a lawyer if they provide substandard service.

For example, you may be able to take legal action against a lawyer if they:

  • Poorly draft a legal document such as a financial agreement or a contract;
  • Act dishonestly or fraudulently;
  • Charge excessive or unreasonable fees;
  • Unreasonably delay a matter or fail to act within a limitation period;
  • Fail to properly advise on legal consequences;
  • Under-settle a claim;
  • Inaccurately name defendants or plaintiffs;
  • Provide false advice on the effect of legislation; or
  • Fail to disclose all fees and charges for service.

Not all financial loss that results from a lawyer’s conduct can be considered negligence. At Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers, we can help determine whether there has been negligence in your situation.

If your lawyer has been negligent, you may have the right to compensation. It is best to have your claim of professional negligence legally assessed. You can discuss the merits of your claim with us here at Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers. We will work with you to allow you to understand your options and likely compensation.

Yes. Most claims of professional negligence have a six-year time limit. This time limit starts at the time you first suffered loss at the result of negligence. Extensions can be granted in exceptional circumstances only.

The compensation you may receive is dependent on the unique circumstances of your case. If your claim does succeed, you may be compensated to the degree that will return you to your financial position before the negligence occurred. You may also be eligible for compensation for any lost profits or expenses incurred in trying to resolve the negligence.

As each case is unique, the time it takes to finalise the claim is hard to determine. Many different factors contribute to the time it takes for a decision on your claim. Ensuring you provide accurate and detailed records to support your claim can make the process quicker.

A lawyer’s negligent conduct can have a devastating effect on a person’s life. Legal professionals, like the team at Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers, can help to determine the strength of your claim and the best way to obtain maximum compensation, while also reducing the risks involved and minimising costs to you.

The cost to make a professional negligence claim against a legal professional will depend on the case. If you have suffered as a result of a lawyer’s negligence, Gibbs Wright Litigation Lawyers can take up your fight and ensure you are properly compensated. Call now for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Yes. If you are a lawyer or legal professional accused of professional negligence, our team can help you. We will work closely with you to determine the strength of the claim against you and the best way to minimise any compensation payable, while reducing the risks involved and minimising costs to you.


What our clients say

"These guys are fantastic. Extremely fast to respond with invaluable expertise and assistance. They helped resolve my dispute in the most cost effective and timely manner. Billing was extremely reasonable for the service."
Paul Cleveland
"Highly recommend Spencer and his team ..... took what was a very stressful time of my life and made it that much easier to deal with. The best possible advice leading to the best possible outcome for me. Thank you so much !!"
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Our people

Meet our litigation team

Yusuf Furgan
Senior litigation solicitor

Meet Yusuf

Yusuf combines his formidable legal research and problem-solving skills together to resolve employment and commercial disputes.

Rebekka Hallberg
Senior litigation solicitor

Meet Rebekka

Rebekka is dedicated, driven, and an out-of-the-box type thinker, who assists our clients in a wide variety of litigation and IP matters.

Melany Dowse
Special counsel

Meet Melany

Melany represents a range of clients from individuals and small businesses to body corporates and insolvency practitioners.

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