Client Convicted of Crime Can't Sue Attorney For Legal Malpractice

On January 3, 2018, federal court Judge Robert W. Sweet from the Southern District in Manhattan, dismissed a legal malpractice claim filed by a disgruntled client who was convicted of wire fraud and conspiracy. The reason for the dismissal was a well settled principle under New York law that you can't state a 'malpractice claim against your criminal defense attorney if your conviction remains undisturbed'. The only way around this rule is if you can claim that you were innocent of the crime for which you were convicted. In this case the incarcerated client filed suit pro-se (representing himself) and his complaint failed to allege that he was innocent and wrongfully convicted due to the negligence of his attorney.

The Court kindly granted the plaintiff 30 days to move to vacate the dismissal. In other words, he gave a pro se plaintiff one more opportunity to properly draft a credible complaint with a claim that he was actually innocent of the crimes for which he was convicted AND that "but for" the negligence of his attorney, he would have been found innocent. Roy v Seidler, 2018 WL 286109

Ronald C. Burke, Esq

Trial Attorney with 30+ Years of Experience Attorney Ronald C. Burke, Esq. has more than 30 years of experience and has focused his career on representing clients in cases involving personal injury, medical malpractice and legal malpractice. He is a seasoned trial lawyer and has won many seven-figure settlements and verdicts for his clients over the years, including many case victories listed among the largest in the history of the New York State. He has been featured in the news and is a regular lecturer for the New York County Lawyers Association, as well as having lectured before the New York State Bar Association. Ron is also an attorney with Kelner & Kelner, a New York personal injury law firm. Awards and Accolades Mr. Burke's awards and accolades are many. Among them, he has been included in New York Super Lawyers® each year since 2010, and he has received the highest-possible AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®. Verdict Search, a part of the New York Law Journal, frequently recognizes his notable successes after winning some of the highest settlements and verdicts in past years. He was also featured in their list of the "Top New York Verdicts " and "Top New York Settlements." He is a member of the New York State Bar Association and is licensed to practice law in the U.S. District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, as well as before the United States Supreme Court. When Attorney Burke is not handling legal malpractice cases, he is highly involved in the local community. He was a member of the Village of Rockville Centre Volunteer Fire Department, has served on the local school board and as Chairman of the local Zoning Board. Learn more about Attorney Burke and how he can skillfully handle your malpractice case by contacting the Law Offices of Ronald C. Burke, Esq. right away to schedule your complimentary case evaluation. Our firm is here to help! Contact a New York Legal Malpractice Attorney Our firm provides each client's case with thorough preparation and aggressive representation, ensuring that you win the best possible results for your case whether it is settled or goes to trial. As a seasoned trial lawyer, Mr. Burke can provide the strong and relentless representation you need to establish negligence in a legal malpractice case and to recover any damages you may have suffered. Our firm can recover compensation for pre-trial and trial malpractice, violations of fee arrangements, loss of income, pain and suffering, and much more. Contact us today!


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