Thursday, November 26, 2009

Professional Negligence - The Basics

By Simon P Jennings

The act of neglecting clients by professionals such as doctors, advocated, accountants, and architects is known as professional negligance. Whether this neglect has stemed out of a mindful and intended motive is irrelevant when it comes to the establishment of this act.

Such carelessness can be very expensive for the professionals. If a client or an employee is not satisfied by the professionalism of an individual, they could, and probably would, file a law suit against you for professional negligence. Although such lawsuits are mostly filed by clients, it is also very likely that they will be filed by employees against employers. If the later is the case, then you should pay heed to the following basics, because a suit filed by an employee is disgraceful, and will also create a negitive impact on other employees.

The professionals may find it cumbersome to defend such law suits. The employees or clients who sue are often prejudiced rather than objective. This is the rule rather than the exception. One must try to find witnesses to testify in favour of the case of an individual. It could be a colleague who knows one well, or an established authority in the field. If such people could testify that the charges of professional negligence are baseless, it could give significant weight to the case. Although one must be thoroughly prepared for witnesses who are testifying against the case.

There are steps that one can take to rule out such horrid ends. Foremost of all, the quality of work of an individual should be of such a high standard that it entirely leaves out any chances of employees, colleagues, or clients being dissatisfied, or left feeling neglected. Concern towards them will allow the professional to live in a relaxed manner with peace of mind.

Another very important point to consider is that any relationship that a professional has, be it with a client, or an employee should be of respect. This way, you will be conscious of the needs, and requirements of the clients and employees, and pay heed to what they think. If we take the example of doctors, it is very important to listen to what the patient is saying, answer each question, and do not lose your patience, no matter how futile the questions might be.

An extension to the previous line of reasoning, it is also crucial to give your professional opinion in various things. One should give the risks, and the benefits of the options that arise in discussions. If for example, a client says that he/she wants a basement right under the staircase, it is the duty of the architect to adhere to their wishes. However, this certainly does not mean that they do everything as the client says. They have to give their professional opinion; if the flooring will not support the staircase, one should inform the client beforehand.

Furthermore, another way through which to satisfy clients is through being organised. Such a skill speaks volumes about professionalism, and keeps both clients and employees happy. Through this practice of meticulous records and files, one can easily attend to their needs, and satisfy them to the best of his knowledge.

In conclusion, it is essential to remind the professional once more that his clients and employees have rights upon him. Therefore, he must make sure that no act of his ever impinges on their rights. All of this is not being said to make the professional unnecessarily wary. It is being said to advise him to employ caution, so that he may never have to face the horrid possibility of defending himself in a courtroom.

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