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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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  #1  
Old 04-28-2020, 12:30 AM
ipodtouch ipodtouch is offline
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Default Lawyer recommendation

Looking for advice/referral.

My husband has had nothing but a runaround from his current lawyer. She came highly recommended but doesnt return calls or emails, and is frequently unavailable. She then passed him off to an associate, who also doesnt return calls or emails. My husband has sent several requests for information regarding his case, without response. It is only when he sends a more Im getting pissed off, that they respond (usually with a great deal of attitude).

His case has been dragged out for over 4 yrs now, and it seems like his ex wifes lawyer runs the show. We have also made several requests when his lawyer responds and they flat out tell him that he cant do this or that (ie, asking for costs etc).

Are we out of line by expecting his lawyer be diligent for $450/hr?

Would my husband be crazy to switch to another law firm at this point? We just want finality and they seem quite happy dragging it out and sending my husband to the poorhouse.

Does anyone have any recommendations for a reliable lawyer?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-28-2020, 08:39 AM
Abba435 Abba435 is offline
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Welcome to family law
Look up Kinso here
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Old 04-28-2020, 08:44 AM
Abba435 Abba435 is offline
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Look up Kinso here
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Old 04-28-2020, 08:54 AM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
Looking for advice/referral.
Welcome, might want to think about details of your case as it could be the process rather than the lawyer.

Quote:
My husband has had nothing but a runaround from his current lawyer. She came highly recommended but doesnt return calls or emails, and is frequently unavailable. She then passed him off to an associate, who also doesnt return calls or emails.
Your husbands case is not the only case this lawyer is working on. Plus if they were highly recommended and have great reviews they are probably very busy and could have a number of trial cases they are consumed with. It is not uncommon for an associate to deal with clients while the lawyer is in court or handling more urgent matters.

Quote:
My husband has sent several requests for information regarding his case, without response. It is only when he sends a more Im getting pissed off, that they respond (usually with a great deal of attitude).
What kind of requests is he asking for? Is it has my ex wife responded? More than likely the answer is no and your husband is simply bothering them. What was their answer to his question? Where are they at in the process? Is it a case of he needs to motion for disclosure? Are they waiting for a court date? Does the other side have a deadline?

Quote:
His case has been dragged out for over 4 yrs now, and it seems like his ex wifes lawyer runs the show.
Normal. Many people on this forum have been waiting upwards of 8-10 years to get movement. This is the problem with family law.

Quote:
We have also made several requests when his lawyer responds and they flat out tell him that he cant do this or that (ie, asking for costs etc).
There are a lot of things you cant do and while frustrating that you cant, its good the lawyer tells you no. A lawyer who is honest and says they cant do something is a good lawyer. When you have a lawyer saying yes absolutely they are normally running up your bill.

Quote:
Are we out of line by expecting his lawyer be diligent for $450/hr?
Lawyers are expensive. They are also busy. I would suggest you go through your retainer agreement and see what it says about how the lawyer works and what does or doesnt require a response. I would also do some research on what happens in cases similar to your husbands. Family Law is a marathon not a sprint and when you involve unreasonable people it takes longer. Normally an application is filed, you get a conference date, you go to that conference and both parties may or may not be ordered to produce documentation, then you go to another conference and depending on the details of the matter, it may or may not settle.

You could switch lawyers but that will mean they have to get up to speed, they may have to change court dates or delay, they will have to make new offers, they will have to go to a new court date.

A lot of cases get overbilled because the client is sending endless communication or wasting time. Your husband should tell his lawyer he doesnt want them communicating with the other side without telling you and that you want to see any responses/filings before they do any work. In a good case the lawyer will send a document, meet with you in person and then respond. There is no need for follow up, constant calls or demands for updates. You may think the ex is running the show but if this is all because there is no date for the next appearance and/or the courts are closed, it will drag on.

Thats simply my thoughts not knowing the details of your husbands case. If you are willing to share more (ie: what the issue is, where they are at in the process, what documents have been filed etc) it may help with more advice on what next steps should be.
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Old 04-28-2020, 01:32 PM
LovingDad1234 LovingDad1234 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
She came highly recommended but doesnt return calls or emails, and is frequently unavailable.
Lawyers juggle anywhere from 10-50 files at a time. You may want an "update" but meanwhile your lawyer might be feverishly prepping for a trial or motion. I noted that my lawyer would "spring" into action when I had a court date approaching. Otherwise, he told me that nothing in my case was urgent, and I let him focus on his other files. You don't want to peeve off your lawyer either by being needy, that is what therapists are for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
His case has been dragged out for over 4 yrs now, and it seems like his ex wifes lawyer runs the show.
Some action should have happened in 4 years. Perhaps you should speak with lawyer on a gameplan. Such as 2-3 months negotiation to settle out of court, and if not file a court application. Then after the mandatory CC and SC, you will get a sense of where the judge's head is at, and you can make efforts to settle in line with that. Otherwise file a motion for interim decision in line with judge's viewpoints at the CC/SC and set a trial. Nothing gets people to settle faster than a looming trial date.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
Are we out of line by expecting his lawyer be diligent for $450/hr?
There is absolutely ZERO correlation between hourly rate and results. It all depends what you are asking for, what other side is asking for, what the law says, and how reasonable or unreasonable people involved are. The biggest factors driving up costs are whether you continuously pester your lawyer, or if your ex resorts to tactics aimed at driving up costs (lengthy court briefs, delays, adjournments, waste of court appearances). Letters from your lawyer do nothing too so don't send lawyer letters.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
Would my husband be crazy to switch to another law firm at this point? We just want finality and they seem quite happy dragging it out and sending my husband to the poorhouse.
Running the other side out of money is a common tactic by people and their lawyers to get the other side to give up and settle with what the other party wants. Rather than have them run the show, why don't run the show? Set up a gameplan and stick with it. The most important part of choosing a lawyer is to have a good relationship with lawyer. Is it professional and respectful? Are they honest with you? Can they tell you what they think will play out in court? How things would go in accordance with other similar cases? How is his/her reputation in the legal community, including the judge? Its a small field and reputations are easy to discover...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ipodtouch View Post
Does anyone have any recommendations for a reliable lawyer?
The fact that you don't indicate which city or region you are looking for a lawyer tells me you are fairly inexperienced in the legal game. You want a lawyer in your city, as you don't want to pay travel costs for court appearances. At $450/hour, you would bee paying $1800 in travel expense for your lawyer to drive from Toronto to London for a court appearance that can last 20 minutes. Look up google searches. Some google searches show "the best rated" and there are also google reviews. There is a website as well called lawyerratings.com which contains reviews.
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