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Potential warning flag for attorney clients: gluttony?

What do you think of when you hear the term “gluttony?” Many people might readily conjure up an image of a person who just can’t leave the buffet. Gluttony might similarly serve as an apt descriptor for an individual whose appetite for accumulation, overindulgence or sheer possession in virtually any context seemingly knows no bounds.

Let’s talk lawyers for a moment, who are spotlighted in a recent series of legal articles focused on the so-called “deadly sins” of attorneys that can adversely impact client representation.

What’s the connection with gluttony there? Things like inflated billings, failure to timely respond to key deadlines, gross misapplication of relevant law, continuous lapsed communication – these and related shortcomings are easily spotlighted as attorney failings that can materially injure a client.

But gluttony?

Actually, that affliction arguably rises to the top of the list for client red flags concerning professional representation. The authors of the above-cited pieces note that the competitive and pressurized atmosphere of legal practice leads many attorneys to continuously take on new work in an unchecked way to stay ahead of the pack. Some lawyers “do not know when to stop or when to say no.”

That inability to rein it in can bear obviously downside consequences for individuals and families who justifiably rely on their counsel’s competent representation. That delivery of service can be markedly compromised when an advocate has taken on other work in cripplingly high amounts and/or concerning subject matter that he or she is not experienced in. Moreover, juggling a never-say-no workload can easily yield conflicts of interest that can prove harmful to a client.

Questions or concerns regarding a California attorney’s questionable ability to deliver competent representation for any reason can be directed to a proven Los Angeles legal malpractice office.