In 2010, a Texas state court judge filed suit against a well known plaintiff’s attorney. The judge’s complaint included allegations of defamation and extortion. This complaint stemmed from a long standing issue between the judge and attorney. The attorney originally filed a petition with the Texas State Commission on Judicial Conduct which the judge alleges was solely an attempt to diminish the judge’s changes of re-election. The attorney’s petition claimed the judge belittled, berated and ridiculed his colleagues to the public as well as to other judges. Additionally, after pre-suit discovery was conducted, the judge alleged the attorney based his petition on events reported to him by other sources, rather than based on firsthand knowledge.
After filing the petition, the attorney did not act on it until a few weeks before the filing deadline for judicial candidates, at which time the attorney gave copies of the complaint to several media sources. But it did not end there. The attorney also e-mailed a copy of the complaint to over 100 members of the local American Board of Trial Advocates. The question remains whether the attorney filed the complaint was acting in good faith and had knowledge of the judicial misconduct he is asserting or whether he was acting with reckless disregard for the truth of the information he received in violation of Model Rule of Professional Conduct 8.2. The case is continuing. It is not only clients that are critical of judges and lawyers. Lawyers and judges sometimes point their fingers at each other. Who is correct does not matter. What does matter is that if you have been injured because someone acted improperly you should consider having a lawyer review your situation.
Contact our office to discuss your potential legal malpractice claim.