Bentonville Professional Negligence Attorneys
Representing Bentonville Individuals and Businesses in Matters of Professional Negligence
When you hire an accountant, financial advisor, consultant, or any other professional, you expect them to act in good faith and do their job to the best of their ability. While many professionals honor this expectation and their responsibility to their clients, some cause tremendous harm through careless, reckless, negligent, or even unlawful conduct. You may be entitled to compensation if you suffered losses due to a professional’s failure to act within the accepted standards of their field.
Our Bentonville professional negligence lawyers have over 250 years of combined experience and have recovered over $1 billion for our clients. Our team at Potts Law Firm is made up of aggressive, driven litigators who are never afraid to go after deep-pocketed professionals who act like they are immune from accountability. We understand how to strategically approach professional malpractice cases and are committed to getting you the money you need to move forward, no matter the complexity of the situation.
You owe no legal fees unless we win, so contact us online or give us a call at (479) 323-3738 to schedule a free initial consultation. Same-day appointments are available, and we offer our services in English and Spanish.
What Is Considered Professional Negligence in Arkansas?
No human, even a specialized professional, is perfect. Honest mistakes are inevitable, and things can sometimes go wrong even if someone seemingly does everything right. There is a stark difference between an unfortunate outcome of a good-faith effort and a catastrophic loss resulting from carelessness, recklessness, or negligence.
Because of the nature of their work, professionals working in specialized fields have a greater legal responsibility to act in the best interests of their clients. Professional negligence involves a professional violating that heightened duty of care they owe to a client.
But what determines whether an action constitutes professional negligence (also known as professional malpractice)? Professional fields have an acceptable standard of care that professionals within that field cannot deviate from. The parameters of that field are decided by other professionals working in that field, leading to a historical standard that will almost certainly be assessed in any eventual court proceeding. Put another way, the court will typically consider whether another reasonable professional in the applicable field finds the defendant’s actions to be acceptable.
Additionally, there are several types of professional negligence. The categorization of the offense will depend on the nature of the misconduct.
Our Bentonville professional negligence attorneys are ready to advocate for you in cases involving:
- Ordinary negligence. There is a difference between taking a calculated risk that does not pay off and acting carelessly. A professional commits ordinary negligence if they did not intentionally harm a client but nonetheless did through a lack of attention.
- Gross negligence. Professional malpractice may be considered “gross negligence” if it results from a professional’s deliberate or especially reckless actions. In other words, a professional may commit gross negligence if they did something they knew would or more than likely could cause harm to a client.
- Negligence per se. When a professional does something illegal that harms a client, they commit negligence per se. The negligence per se classification may also apply when a reasonable person finds a professional’s conduct to be unacceptable, unethical, or unreasonable, even if their actions are not necessarily unlawful.
- Breach of contract. It is not uncommon for individuals and businesses to enter contracts when working with a professional. Legal agreements may include additional provisions that implement additional protections and obligations beyond the inherent duty of care a professional owes a client, and if any of these terms are violated, a breach of contract lawsuit may be able to help the affected party recover damages.
- Breach of fiduciary duty. Certain types of professionals are also considered fiduciaries, meaning they must put their clients’ interests ahead of their own. When a fiduciary prioritizes themselves over a client, they violate their breach of duty and become vulnerable to litigation.
- Fraud. All professionals must act honestly and disclose material facts. A professional commits fraud when they make any effort to deceive you or omit vital information, typically in an effort to enrich themselves.
It may not always be abundantly clear whether a professional has committed some form of malpractice. Potts Law Firm can ascertain whether your rights were violated and help you explore all available legal remedies.
Who Can I Sue for Professional Negligence in Arkansas?
Not every person who offers advice or services will necessarily be considered a “professional” under the law. Generally, only an individual or organization that operates in an industry that offers specialized advice or skills can be considered a “professional” who owes clients a heightened duty of care.
Examples of professionals and professional organizations that can be held accountable for professional negligence include:
- Accountants and accounting firms
- Architects and architectural firms
- Attorneys and law firms
- Business consultants/ business consulting
- Counselors and counseling firms
- Dentists and dental facilities
- Designers and design firms
- Doctors and medical facilities
- Engineers and engineering firms
- Estate executors
- Financial advisors
- Funeral homes
- Insurance agents, insurance brokers, and insurance companies
- Pharmacists and pharmacies
- Securities brokers
- Tax advisors
What Types of Compensation Can I Recover?
If you wish to recover damages for professional negligence, you must file a lawsuit before the applicable deadline. The rules surrounding how long you have to bring a professional negligence claim can be complicated depending on the type of malpractice. For many types of professional negligence, you have three years from the date of the offense to file a lawsuit in Arkansas.
You may not immediately realize the consequences of professional malpractice, however, especially if the professional attempts to conceal their misconduct or it takes time for the damages to become apparent. Fortunately, the state’s discovery rule allows you three years from the date you discovered your damages (or reasonably should have discovered your damages) to start the legal process.
Medical malpractice cases work differently, and you have less time to take legal action. In Arkansas, you only have two years from the date you were injured to file a claim, though there are some exceptions. The discovery rule that applies to other professional negligence cases does not apply to medical malpractice claims unless they involve a foreign object that was left inside the body. In these specific instances, a victim has one year from the date they discovered should have discovered the presence of the foreign object to file a lawsuit.
We are ready to provide the sophisticated advocacy you need to hold professionals accountable for malpractice. Call (479) 323-3738 or contact us online to discuss your case today.
I had a wonderful experience with this law firm.- Stephen P.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him or any of the team at Potts.- Theo C.
The Potts Law Firm is a powerhouse of brilliant attorneys.- Molly H.
I would recommend Potts Law Firm for any and all legal matters that come my way in the future!- W. Gary
Great law firm!- Hugo G.