CarefulBuilder14 wrote:An ethical obligation? Yes. An enforceable legal obligation? That's not so clear.
You can use evidence of an ethics violation in a malpractice action. Link 1 Link 2
Malpractice is most easily understood as a violation of a duty the attorney may have to a client. There are easy ones - treating client money improperly, s3x with an opposing party - and there are more difficult ones - failure to adequately prepare for trial, taking a case without the skills or knowledge to handle it. For an attorney, making a mistake is not grounds for malpractice; utter failure to understand the applicable law may be.
I'm not trying to throw your attorney under the bus, here. We all screw up once in a while. However, I wouldn't take on a client who needed bankruptcy counsel because I don't know how to file bankruptcy for someone - it's outside of my skill set right now. It sounds like your attorney may have been in over his or her head; even I know that there are special rules about discharging student loans.
On the other hand, I don't think having $0 balance accounts discharged drops your credit score any lower. You're already at the bottom of the barrel, to be frank. I'm guessing that your loans were turned over to the guarantee agency and accelerated. You should be able to tell what was included in your bankruptcy by looking at the Schedule F (if your attorney put it in the right place - check Schedules D-G). If the student loans were discharged in a bankruptcy, it's my understanding that the guarantee companies can't turn around and come after you for the debt.
I'm not a bankruptcy attorney, but I've seen quite a few petitions over the last few years. This wouldn't be the first time someone inappropriately tried to discharge a student loan.
(Disclaimer - I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. None of this should be construed as legal advice. Consult counsel.)
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