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  • ethics of lawyers

    First time posting. 2 years ago(Jan 2018) I started proceedings against my ex-husband for not paying child support. My ex husband is very wealthy and is an IT Architect. He owns an IT Consulting company. For the 1st year he delayed everything and provided no disclosure. In March 2019 he retained his best friend's law practice to represent him. My lawyer requested disclosure again, at that time my ex stated that he works for a company making 30K as a skilled tradesman. Although my ex stated he worked there for over a year he was only able to show paystubs for 6 months. I knew what he was saying was a complete lie. I did some digging and found that the owner of the company was actually his buddy who also owns the law firm which represents him. In the limited financial disclosure provided another company was mentioned where my ex and his buddy lawyer are partners in. No financial disclosure was provided in relation for the company. A case conference was scheduled for September 2019. A week prior to the CC my ex decided to change lawyers. Coincidence, I don't think so. His new legal counsel has also been delaying the matter. I've spent over 30K in 2 years and have not even been to court. My concern is about the ethics of the first lawyer and what I should do and if what they did was criminal. I believe they orchestrated a fake job and try to show the court he is poor. My ex owned 4 properties in the GTA, drives a 100K vehicle and tries to portray to the court with his lawyer friend that he only makes 30k. Since I started proceedings in 2018 my ex has liquidated 3 properties with no financial disclosure provided. In October 2019 he sold a property where his current lawyer holds over 130K in trust and that hasn't even been disclosed either. I am at my wits end with lawyers and this process. ANY ADVICE?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Victorviola View Post
    he retained his best friend's law practice to represent him.
    It feels like you want to lodge an official complaint against this lawyer. This should not be your focus at the moment, you can look at that after your case is done. If you believe your ex is shady, any lawyer he hires will appear shady to you.

    It is almost impossible to get a lawyer in trouble. Your case might be slightly different, but I would still urge you to drop that line of thought.

    my ex stated that he works for a company making 30K as a skilled tradesman.
    How much did he make when you were married?

    I've spent over 30K in 2 years and have not even been to court.
    That is quite a bit. Stop talking to your lawyer, and instruct your lawyer to stop talking to the other side as well. Schedule court dates. Talk in court.

    My concern is about the ethics of the first lawyer and what I should do and if what they did was criminal.
    It was almost certainly not criminal. Fight your ex, not his lawyer.

    My ex owned 4 properties in the GTA, drives a 100K vehicle
    Do you have evidence of this? The properties should be equalized if they were bought during the marriage.

    Is the 100k car a new model or could it have been bought used?

    I am at my wits end with lawyers and this process.
    Just push for court. Some people like to delay, you deal with that by setting court dates. The delayer will often get those adjourned, but the courts keep track of that, and eventually they run out of patience.

    Don't talk to your lawyer unless it is about setting up a court date or preparing materials for that court date.

    Comment


    • #3
      File a motion for disclosure. Send them a form 20 request for disclosure and set a motion date. List out everything you want. Financial statements from companies, proof of ownership and proof of sale for all properties. All bank statements for both personal and professional accounts (chequing, saving etc) for the last four years.

      Your lawyer should know this.

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      • #4
        Financial disclosure has been formally requested by my lawyer 5 times in the past 2 years. He just refuses to provide it especially for his company. The last request mentioned specific bank accounts ect, due date passed last week and nothing was provided again. I've been pushing for a case conference but there is always some excuse, Cant' file motion until after case conference..

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        • #5
          Originally posted by rockscan View Post
          File a motion for disclosure...Your lawyer should know this.
          I get the feeling that her lawyer is lousy. I figure that as part of the push to court there would be a motion for disclosure. A court date might start to get her lawyer on the path towards competence.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Janus View Post
            I get the feeling that her lawyer is lousy. I figure that as part of the push to court there would be a motion for disclosure. A court date might start to get her lawyer on the path towards competence.


            Then its time to get a new lawyer.

            You donít need a case conference for a disclosure motion. Youíve been nice, he didnít respond. File a motion for disclosure and have a judge order it. You also ask for costs because when he loses, you get your money back. With this motion it results in an order and if he ignores it its contempt. Then you can request his pleading be struck and have his income imputed.

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            • #7
              Financial disclosure has been formally requested by my lawyer 5 times in the past 2 years.
              One request, 60 days, if nothing go straight to court.

              If your lawyer is telling you not to go to court get a new lawyer.
              If you're not instructing your lawyer to go to court, change your instructions.

              Comment


              • #8
                Janus - We separated in 2012 and divorced in 2014. He prepared the agreement at which time he was making $70k, my ex sponsored me when we married and we were married for 10 years. Assets at time of separation were not divided equally as I didnt have legal representation. All i received was $650 for child support, didn't even know i was entitled to spousal support.
                A year after separation he got a new job where he was making 200K. I have documentation to back it up. I ended up living with my daughter in a 1 bedroom apartment while he bought a penthouse condo and a new car.

                I have documentation about his properties, rental incomes, luxury vehicles ect. I know once this is all done he will owe thousands of dollars. It's getting the disclosure and getting his income imputed that remains the obstacle,

                Im worried that he will financially cripple me before this goes to trial. As soon as i started proceedings he cut of child support for 2 years and just recently agreed to make interm payments of $500 a month.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Victorviola View Post
                  I've spent over 30K in 2 years and have not even been to court. I am at my wits end with lawyers and this process. ANY ADVICE?
                  I would be at my wits end too....don't you want closure? As others have said, 1 notice for disclosure, with a deadline, if he doesn't fulfill request, its court time. $30,000 on legal fees without court can only mean 2 things. One, is that you are meeting and talking with your lawyer LOTS and 2, your lawyer is spending your money on lots of useless letters to the other side. Its court time. Period. Get in court. Even from the start of an application, it can take years to reach the finish line....

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Victorviola View Post
                    Im worried that he will financially cripple me before this goes to trial.
                    That's under your control. Stop using your lawyer unless it necessary. $30k before a case conference is crazy. I spent less than that and I had multiple court appearances.

                    As soon as i started proceedings he cut of child support for 2 years and just recently agreed to make interm payments of $500 a month.
                    What was your lawyer doing during these 2 years that child support was cut?

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                    • #11
                      Received an update today: So disclosure was requested early February and there was a laundry list of account ect. Absolutely nothing provided and no response from opposing counsel. My lawyer is trying to schedule a case conference and so far every date recommended does not work for OC. I do have a legal question: OC has been holding money in trust for my ex in another family law matter, the money is in relation to the sale of a property. In my disclosure request it states to declare any money held in trust. This is the 2nd time OC has failed to disclose these funds. Is that legal?? Next update Monday as my lawyer will try to follow up again.

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                      • #12
                        You need to go to a motion for disclosure not a conference. The motion is separate and will force him to disclose the items ordered. Tell your lawyer to get moving on this rather than spinning their wheels.

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                        • #13
                          Not sure about that one. You can't have a motion before a case conference unless it's urgent or an emergency. She needs to book a CC date asap, let the other side worry about the date, and complete the CC without booking another one. Then she can bring a motion for disclosure.

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                          • #14
                            Stillplaying- that is exactly what I was told by my lawyer, no motions till after CC, unless emergency but I don't fall into that category,

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                            • #15
                              Even though my ex will not disclose, he is asking for disclosure from my common law partner, he is requesting expenses that my partner pays, benefit summary from his employer and NOA'S, my partner does not want to provide personal and financial information, any advise if my partner should, my partner actually financially supports my exs child when he doesn't.

                              Comment

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