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#770784 - 10/05/15 11:08 PM What makes an attorney negligent?
oldsmom Offline

member

Registered: 06/08/15
Posts: 100
We retained an attorney at the beginning of the summer for my husband's child support hearing. We got one invoice near the end of August for work done in June and July, and it was due August 30th. It was for almost double the retainer, although we were never informed that it would cost this much. My husband tried to discuss this with the attorney, but she immediately snapped with, "go get another attorney if you don't like my work!" But at that point, the work was 3/4 done, so we decided to just keep going with this attorney. She then sent us this crazy letter about how she's a small lawfirm and we can't expect them to be punctual like the big law firms. (Even though the only attorney we worked with before has the same size office she does, and she knows it.)

However that has been the only invoice we have seen. August and September haven't been billed yet, and when we have asked about the invoicing, the paralegal makes excuses, and no one has the hours to date. I am getting panicked about what this bill will cost.

Meanwhile, we go to court in a day and a half, and the attorney should have contacted us today to get my husband's declaration. The paralegal said the attorney didn't get good sleep on Sunday night, and she would call us when she arrived. It's the end of the day, and no call... We are in the last hours before any last filings are required...

At what point does this become a negligent situation, and what can we do about it?

What's really weird is that after the initial consult, I have had almost no conversation with the attorney, and only maybe 3 with the paralegals. But somehow the attorney has it in her mind that I don't like her office. Which is true NOW, but back when this started, I was the one actually liked her work. She does solid work, when she's actually working. Now, I am just really annoyed, and worried about the billing.

Is this normal attorney behavior? We have only worked with one other office, who was always prompt with billing, and communicated - so maybe we are just spoiled?

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#770785 - 10/11/15 08:45 PM Re: What makes an attorney negligent? [Re: oldsmom]
karenann Offline

recently joined

Registered: 10/11/15
Posts: 12
This is just a suggestion; go to the Bar Association file a fee dispute. Attorneys can get disbarred or a strong reprimand for what has been forced on you. This is the biggest emotional turmoil you will ever go thru; your attorney must be patient, listen and ask if you have questions. Yes....find another attorney. In the interim contact the Bar Association and immediately file a complaint both a fee dispute and her very unprofessional demeanor. I do not know what State you reside, but their are excellent attorneys everywhere that will treat you as you should be treated: with dignity, respect and most of all.... she is your employee. Fire her. A good attorney will catch up quickly, I realize the expense but you will get it back. Invoices must be clear, understandable. I would tell that low level paralegal to take a refresher and go pound salt. You do not need this negative energy. My thoughts are with you.

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