Statute of Limitations: If you believe you have a legal malpractice action, its essential to act promplty to protect your rights. At Glickman & Glickman www.legalmalpracticela.com, we hold lawyers accountable. But, we can only do so if the injured client contacts us promptly.
In California, there are Statutes of Limitation for every action you might want to bring in court. Most of the time, the Statute of Limitations for an action is easy to figure out. For example, in a car accident case, you have to file a law suit no more than two years after the accident. Since the accident itself is the triggering event, there is usually no question about when the two year period starts running.
In contrast, the Statute of Limitations in a legal malpractice case is often times very difficult to determine. Generally speaking, you must file your lawsuit no more than one year from the time you first start sufferring some damage that you know or should know is resulting from the lawyer's malpractice. This time does not start running while the lawyer is still representing you for the specific matter you want to sue him for.
There are several exeptions to this one year rule, aside from the continuing representation exception. Also, there is an outside limit, again subject to some exceptions, of four years from the malpractice.
The complete text of the legal malpractice Statute of Limitations can be found at: http://law.onecle.com/california/civil-procedure/340.6.html
For now, the take away from this discussion is simple: if you suspect you may want to sue your lawyer for malpractice, you must act promplty to protect your rights, or you may lose your malpractice case because of the Statute of Limitations.