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  • Advice Please

    In November I was informed my ex. had a new lawyer, by way of his new lawyer corresponding with my lawyer. This e mail indicated that the new lawyer had papers to be served and would my lawyer accept service of these papers. Since then there has been no communication from his new lawyer and no papers were served.

    My ex has also stopped communicating with me. He has gone from countless e- mails regarding the dire consequences if I don’t agree to his requests, to no communication at all, about anything, with the exception of a couple of e-mail about Christmas. He has stopped communicating and stopped paying support.

    With the exception of the e-mail in November from my lawyer informing me of the request to accept service of papers, I have also not heard from my lawyer. The one e-mail I sent my lawyer, three weeks ago, asking what was happening, went unanswered.

    Today I get an e-mail from my lawyer asking me if I have heard from ex., if my ex. has indicated to me what is going on.

    My lawyer is also asking me if I want him to contact my exs. new lawyer to ask what is happening and to advise the new lawyer that I will file and serve my own statement of claim.

    My feeling on all the non communication is it’s just the time of year, that once the holidays are over his new lawyer will send something to my lawyer.

    My question is, am I being too naïve? Should I file my own statement of claim? Should I not respond to my lawyers e-mail until after the holidays?

  • #2
    Unless your planning on terminating your relationship with your current lawyer, Let them handle it. As far as service of any documents concerning future action and it's not clear who is actually representing your Ex -- Serve your Ex directly.


    • #3
      Is this delay by his new lawyer in serving the papers unusual?


      • #4
        No, it is not unusual at this time of year. Most family lawyers wind up in court almost every day, trying to settle the bitter emergency motions for christmas access, etc...and then try to spend some of their holidays with their own families...

        Many lawyers spend their day from one conference call to another with opposing counsel to try to settle without the big battles...after January 3, things will return to normal until mid February, when parents start fighting over March fun!


        • #5
          If the delay at this time of year is not unusual, why would my lawyer be e-mailing me to ask if I know what's going on?


          • #6
            Putting feelers out to see if there has been anything resolved between the parties would be my guess.


            • #7
              Two of my children are having dental surgery this week to have their wisdom teeth out. I sent my ex an e-mail this week stating that I trust the pre- authorization has been approved and that any costs not covered by his dental plan will be covered in his employee health account.

              His response was, no the remainder will be shared proportionately, and "my employee health account is no longer a matter I will discuss with you."

              Is he required to continue to utilize this health account to cover medical and dental costs for our children?


              • #8
                I'm not specificly familiar with Alberta family law, but in Ontario he would not be. While it is common for an agreement or court order to make mention of providing insurance coverage, there is no law making it mandatory, expenses are simply split proportionately. Having insurance coverage for the children is sensible and saves a lot of infighting over items, but it's not written into the law. The employee health account is yet another layer of coverage which operates like a savings account. He may be running into restrictions from his employer or he may simply be resentful that he is providing full coverage for the children and you are therefore not. The employee health account is a top-up for deductables and items not covered by an insurance plan, but it will have a specific limit per year, possibly only a couple of thousand. If he provides full coverage for the children it cuts into his own available coverages. It is fair and reasonable that he expect you to provide your share of the expenses.


                • #9
                  As I understand it, he has the ability to have the total cost of the two surgeries covered, between his dental plan and his health account. As far as I understand, his employee health account does not restrict the coverage for the children, and he will still have all the coverage he needs for himself. This never would have been an issue if we were still together, he would have submitted the costs and then been reimbursed.

                  So yes, I believe he is resentful. I also believe that he will submit his portion, and get reimbursed for his share 100%. Which means he will not be out of pocket for any part of his share.


                  • #10
                    In November I was informed my ex. had a new lawyer, by way of his new lawyer corresponding with my lawyer. This e mail indicated that the new lawyer had papers to be served and would my lawyer accept service of these papers. Since then there has been no communication from his new lawyer and no papers were served.
                    Update. My lawyer has sent emails and left voice messages for stbx lawyer, the only response my lawyer has received is, “I am working on this file. It is taking me longer than I had anticipated, but it will be forthcoming shortly, together with the Statement of Claim for Divorce which is being filed with the Court.” That was two weeks ago, in the interim my lawyer has left another voice message, to which there was no response. My ex. also stopped paying support in October, the same time he hired a new lawyer.

                    My lawyer is asking me if I have heard anything, and is asking me for instruction on how to proceed. I can’t figure out what the delay is.

                    How much time is reasonable?

                    Does it make sense to file an application for interim child/spousal support?


                    • #11
                      I would first find out what the lawyer's idea of 'shortly' is. IS that shortly in lawyer getting paid by the hour time or shortly as in a timely fashion? Ask for and expect a timeline.

                      What does your lawyer suggest?


                      • #12
                        It could be a stalling tactic. Have u started court proceedings?


                        • #13
                          My lawyer has emailed and left a voice message for his lawyer asking how long "shortly" is, and the other lawyer does not respond.

                          I have not started court proceedings because that is what my ex. and his lawyer have said they are doing. Now my lawyer is asking me for instruction as to how I want to proceed. This is why I am asking how long is reasonable.


                          • #14
                            The new lawyer started in October - I would think 4 months would be plenty of time, IMO?


                            • #15
                              I’m not sure when the new lawyer started; stbx stopped communicating, so it may have been middle/end of November. My thinking was the new lawyer would need time to get up to speed on the file, and then Christmas was in the middle of it all, so now I figure it’s been a month, I would think that is enough time.
                              His lawyer doesn’t respond to requests for information and I am beginning to think that maybe this is a strategy on their part, but I don’t know what’s going on. So my lawyer is asking for instruction on how to proceed. He is asking if I want to file an application for interim child/spousal support.<O</O


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