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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 07-08-2019, 09:28 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Default Lawyer Snafu

I am not quite sure if this is a vent or not. I’m leaning toward looking for comments. It does involve a bit of a “WTF” feeling.

Let me start by saying that we love my husband’s lawyer. He is good, knowledgeable and does good work. His office and admin staff? Not at all. My husband has complained before and at one point blasted one of the admin staff and nothing was resolved. The lawyer has acknowledged the problem and said it would get fixed but today we discovered a giant fuck up.

Well over two months ago we were advised they were going to have the SC adjourned. Husband was advised he had nothing to worry about and to wait to hear the new date. Today he finds out the date was not adjourned and the matter was dismissed! Not only that, all of this happened two weeks ago and he is just learning it now!!

He sent off a scathing email to his lawyer pointing out the weeks of delays on the part of the assistant and the fact he was never in the loop on it. Told lawyer he isn’t paying for this screw up. He is really upset and he’s worried about the case. This isn’t a “fire him” kind of thing. He still wants this lawyer representing him it’s just his admin staff is useless.

Has anyone else had issues with a lawyers office staff and if so, what did you do?
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:16 PM
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arabian arabian is offline
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Like any business, staff are a reflection of the principal.

I'm sure you/your man requested copies of all correspondence received/sent by lawyer in the past correct?

I'd be thinking about a change of legal representation. Too many errors by this lawyer/staff.

I think much will depend on how convincing and sincere the lawyer is to your complaint. Typically when lawyers are told they aren't going to be paid they will close file. So.... you may be looking for a new one anyhow.

I'm not sure what the "dismissed" means in terms of everything now. Who "dismissed" it? Judge? Is this now time for summary judgment or are you back at square one?
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:24 PM
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The judge dismissed it because no one was in attendance and no confirmation was sent by either party. The lawyer has sent a request to set aside the dismissal with backing materials showing the attempts to reach the trial coordinator.

I agree with the reflection of the lawyer. He has admitted there is an issue with this admin and husband thinks she puts his file at the bottom of her pile because he has called and reamed her. If they are that ineffective they should be fired.

At this point we are two years in on litigation and five years in with this lawyer. Why he tolerates this inadequate staffer is beyond us!!
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:30 PM
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well I guess you have to baby-sit her. Perhaps outline a plan with the lawyer with this in mind (cc of all interoffice communication on your file for a start).

That's pretty awful though that neither party showed up. Will you get the same judge? Case conferences in Ontario... is the judge seized of the file?
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:38 PM
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I am not sure. My husband is worried this will look bad on him. Hes hopeful that an argument can be made that the ex could have adjourned it herself when she decided she should get a lawyer. This entire matter has been one giant delay on her part but we do the leg work while she moans about being a single mother. A lot of it has to do with a bad trial coordinator office that never answers phones, voicemails or emails. I would argue they are worse than FRO!!
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Old 07-09-2019, 11:32 AM
gettingexpensive gettingexpensive is offline
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I'll answer what I can:
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
I am not quite sure if this is a vent or not. I’m leaning toward looking for comments. It does involve a bit of a “WTF” feeling.
I'm sure this is a vent. We all need these once in a while!


I can't wait to go through the same crap My first case conf is in 2 weeks..
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Old 07-09-2019, 04:10 PM
iona6656 iona6656 is offline
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that's not a snafu. that's a giant fucking mistake.

I cringe even reading that. If the lawyer is not going to fire that assistant (I would), if I'm you guys- I'm telling him you do not trust that person to work on your matter and you want a different clerk/admin on your file.

And it doesn't look bad on your husband (by the way- I totally missed when you started calling him husband- the wedding must've happened already. lol...congratulations!! )- it looks bad on your lawyer. That isn't even rookie mistake, it's just sloppy practice.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:32 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Thanks iona, it was a couple of months ago, quiet little thing.

He told the lawyer in the email that he doesn’t want this assistant anywhere near his file anymore and that he has always had a problem with her so why wasn’t it made a priority. The lawyer even admitted to us previously that she isn’t the greatest clerk. He didn’t share why she still works for him.

The other big problem is that I do a lot of the work on this file. I’m the one pulling documents, spreadsheets and calculations together. This assistant truly had one fucking job and that was to get the matter adjourned. I would have been on the phone with the courthouse DAILY. There’s only one person who does the adjournment? For real? You sat and waited for that person to call you back?

No answer from the lawyer yet which makes me wonder if he’s on vacation. This entire situation is complete bullshit and does not help his mental health over it. I also blame his ex who asked for the adjournment in the first place “to secure counsel” yet she has no counsel yet. She should have been the one filing the adjournment and getting a new date. If she had been reasonable and understood the law and her entitlements it wouldn’t have gotten this far. Kid 2 starts school in the fall and I have a feeling ex is trying to squeeze as much expense out of this to present to the court. Or to simply wrack up the legal expenses knowing she is going to lose.

Either way we are super angry at this situation and the longer we don’t hear from the lawyer, the more we stew.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:44 PM
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waiting is the hardest in family law... frustrating when other side is self-representing and seems to get away with dragging things out as well. I'd be grilling that lawyer (on his dime) about how he proposes with proceeding with the ex in light of her not having legal counsel....what is his game plan? He may be a nice guy and your man likes him but we all know end result is what matters. Years later, when this thing is behind you, I doubt your man is going to be going fishing with the lawyer.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:50 PM
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He’s handled her self rep attitude really well. Recall he pushed to have costs awarded after her motion for disclosure failed. He does not tolerate her bs. The only reason why he agreed to this adjournment is because he knew she would ask for it on the day which would have meant $1000 in travel costs for all three of us. He has also been really tough with her and refused to accept any of her blustering at the DRC or motion. So there is that.
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