There are other options if you don't want to sue your former lawyer for a mistake you made. You can report them to the state bar association or the United States Bar Association. They will conduct an investigation if the error is serious enough and the lawyer could face disqualification or other disciplinary action. When lawyers make them big, it's called malpractice.
I would say this term is a bit harsh; it sounds like Maleficent, that evil queen who did a number on Sleeping Beauty. A lawyer missing a deadline is nothing compared to setting a booby trap in a palace with a dangerous spinning wheel. That last part is the key. If your lawyer deals with car accidents and divorces and real estate closures and DUI, that's what a general practice lawyer is called.
They are allowed to do that and those types of lawyers are quite useful in small towns where there aren't many options. However, in a larger city or even a medium-sized city, there are a ton of great options for most types of cases and you would really make a mistake if you hired an attorney or law firm of all types. Not just in Chicago, but anywhere in the Chicago area, Rockford, Champaign, Peoria, Belleville, etc. For almost any legal situation, you can find an attorney who has a limited practice focus and gives you the best chance of getting a good outcome.
The program is sponsored by the ABA Litigation Section; the General Practice Division, Small and Individual Firm; the Paralegal Standing Committee; the Senior Lawyers Division; the Young Lawyers Division; and the Center for Professional Development. The only way to establish an attorney-client relationship with us or any other Illinois lawyer is through a signed withholding agreement in which you agree to hire the lawyer and they agree to work with you as a client.