A lawyer’s assurances to his client that a hearing “went well” and there was “nothing to worry about” may act to toll a claim that the lawyer had botched the hearing by failing to call key witnesses, a federal appeals court has ruled.

The decision by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Knopick v. Connelly is an important ruling on the statute of limitations for legal malpractice claims, holding that the clock does not necessarily begin to run when the alleged malpractice occurs in the courtroom if the client can show that he was unaware until the judge ruled against him.

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