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Appellate Success in Legal Malpractice Case Based on Actual Innocence Rule

Marcella Spoto and Patrick Brennan recently prevailed on appeal in a legal malpractice professional liability case in which they had previously won summary judgment. They also successfully opposed a Petition to Bypass the case to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The case hinged on Wisconsin’s "actual innocence" rule, which generally holds that an attorney cannot be sued for malpractice related to the representation of a criminal defendant unless the criminal defendant can establish his or her actual innocence. A version of this rule is used in many jurisdictions across the country with some variation and continues to be challenged.

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