Nobody wants to go through the distressing and expensive experience of being represented by an incompetent or outright crooked attorney. Most attorneys are honest and hardworking, but sometimes people find themselves the victim of legal malpractice. They get torpedoed by their lawyer’s actions, regardless of how strong their claim might be.
When this happens, the best solution may be a malpractice lawsuit to recover damages. But most readers would agree that it is better to avoid getting involved with a substandard lawyer in the first place.
If you need an attorney, and do not already have a relationship with a lawyer you have worked with before and trust, how can you tell before walking through the door that a lawyer should get your business? Of course, referrals from friends can be a good resource. It is also possible to do some investigating on your own, using the Internet.
The California State Bar’s website has a feature that allows users to search for attorneys by name. Users can find a summary about the lawyer they are looking into. Among the information on the page is a section called “Actions Affecting Eligibility to Practice Law.”
This refers to any discipline by the State Bar against the attorney. If his or her license has ever been suspended, or he or she was ever otherwise disciplined for misconduct, you can find some general information about those actions. Those who prefer a paper version can write the State Bar. The address is available in the article linked to here.