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Posted by Grace, a Divorce client,
I needed a divorce attorney two years ago and Mr. Smith was recommended to me. I went to see him and hired him -- he is very personable, but as I learned the hard way, personality isn't what counts when one hires an attorney. For months, he "handled" my case, but in reality, did absolutely nothing except bill me for outrageous amounts of compensation. I admit I erred in sending him many emails, outlining my position and trying to keep him informed about what was happening with my spouse. In the end, just before we were to go to mediation for alimony, he informed me that he thought I was "being unfair to my spouse" because of the amount I requested. I am 74 years old and retired. My Ex was a professional and still working and earning a sizeable salary. I had no resources or income, and had paid Mr. Smith $20,000 to this point in time -- for nothing! The $20,000 I paid him represented half of my total savings. At this point, I fired him -- how could I trust a lawyer who thought I was being unfair to my Ex? My new attorney completed my case, mediated a fair amount of alimony (actually higher than what I had requested from Mr. Smith), and kept her fees down to less than $2000. All during my association with Mr. Smith, I let him know how concerned I was because of the fees he charged and the lack of anything happening. He just kept doing next to nothing and charging me. I should have realized what was going on much sooner, but I was in such a frightened and confused state of mind because of the divorce at my age, that I didn't question him as I should have. I trusted him, and that was a huge mistake. In the end, I paid him $20,000 for a 10-minute hearing which accomplished nothing except being told to mediate the alimony, and then was told by Mr. Smith that "I was being unfair in my request." I would not recommend this attorney to anyone for any reason.