Edward S. Cheng quoted in MLW on likely futility of client’s legal malpractice claims against medical malpractice firm

December 14, 2021

Edward S. Cheng, vice chair and partner in the firm’s Litigation Department, and co-chair of its Professional Liability, Business Litigation, and Construction Law practice groups, was quoted in a Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (MLW) article on Dec. 9, 2021. The article, “Boston PI firm feels wrath of disappointed client,” covers a case in which plaintiff, Brian Evans, who had retained med-mal firm Crowe & Mulvey to pursue malpractice claims against various medical providers who had treated his mother in 2012, ultimately sued Carey, Suchecki and Crowe & Mulvey in Suffolk Superior Court for legal malpractice, claiming that after his former lawyers abruptly dropped out of the case immediately following the verdict, alleging impropriety and failure to depose or call certain witnesses and investigate certain other matters.

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From the article:

“But Edwards S. Cheng, a professional liability attorney at Sherin and Lodgen in Boston, sees rough sailing ahead for Evans in his case against Crowe & Mulvey.

‘When I do a legal malpractice analysis, one of my first questions is the ‘So what?’ question,’ Cheng says. ‘You can always go back into the record of virtually any case and question whether a lawyer should or should not have done this or that. But the question is, would that have led to a different outcome?’

According to Cheng, the Appeals Court’s decision in the medical malpractice case shows that the answer to the question regarding the Crowe & Mulvey attorneys’ performance is largely ‘no.’

‘Even if someone were to second-guess the [Crowe & Mulvey attorneys] for not making a formal objection, they may have just made the judgment at the time that the judge had made a sufficient query as to the propriety of retaining that juror, and decided that trying to argue that issue further would be futile,’ Cheng says.”