When you hire a professional, they are obligated to render competent service. Usually competent service is measured by the level of service an "average" professional in the industry would render. If the professional you hired fails to render that level of service, and you suffer as a result, then that professional may be liable for malpractice.
What Kind of Professional Can Commit Malpractice?
Professionals usually can only be liable for malpractice if some governing body regulates the professionals in their industry. For example, lawyers are regulated by the Bar Association for their state, and can be liable for malpractice if they fall below professional standards.
Professionals that can be liable for malpractice include:
- Dentists, Orthodontists, and Periodontists
- Financial Planner
- Land Surveyor
- Architect or Engineer
The necessary level of proof is different for each profession, but generally malpractice can be proven by showing that:
- Your professional did not render competent service
- You suffered damages
- The incompetent service caused those damages
There are additional ways a professional can commit malpractice, such as:
- Breaching the contract you have with him or her
- Putting his or her own interests before yours
- Violating ethics rules of his or her profession
Do I Need an Attorney to Help Me with My Malpractice Case?
If you are a victim of malpractice and wish to recover damages, you probably have to go to court. The laws of malpractice are complex and vary from state to state and from profession to profession. A defective products lawyer can tell you exactly what your professional was obligated to do for you, and whether the professional committed malpractice. Additionally, a lawyer can help you prove malpractice in court if needed.