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Pennsylvania Court Rejects The “You Should Have Gotten Me A Better Deal” Claim

Phinisee v. LAYSER, Dist. Court, ED Pennsylvania 2014 – Google Scholar.

One common claim against a lawyer is that he failed to obtain a good enough deal for his client. Here, the lawyers obtained $1.2 million for the plaintiff and her minor child in a lawsuit against the United States. After accepting the settlement, she filed suit for legal malpractice. Plaintiff was apparently unhappy about a Medicaid lien and the amount of the settlement.  The district court dismissed the lawsuit on a motion to dismiss. The district court held that the claims were not negligence claims, but, rather claims that the amount of the settlement was insufficient, which are not valid claims under Pennsylvania law.

What the court is saying is that you need more than a bad result to allege legal malpractice. You need to allege some error by the lawyer. Here, plaintiff did not allege an error by the lawyer.

Edward X. Clinton, Jr.