Based on 10 reviews
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To Whom It May Concern:
DIVORCE attorney.........This was the first time I ever needed counsel and I remember being so scared and nervous, and really felt lost at the time. Margaret and her team (Diana) really made me feel comfortable, relaxed, and guided me in every way possible through something I didn't really want to do, but knew it was in the best interest for me and my family; a divorce!!! I'm thankful for their dedication, compassion, hard work, and support. I give them a very high overall rating and would highly recommend them to counsel you if you are in need of an attorney.
Thank you and best regards!
Margaret represented me in a highly contentious, drawn out divorce and custody battle. From the beginning I was impressed with Margaret's style. She has a calm yet assertive demeanor. Her advice was always well-thought out. We sat through 3 failed attempts at mediation (my ex walked out because he wasn't getting what he wanted). At the fourth attempt at mediation I was ready to give in but Margaret was able to bring things to a positive conclusion. Communication with my ex-husband and his lawyer was always difficult but Margaret was able to rise above it all.
In addition to her own skills Margaret has a cadre of experts in child custody and financial planning at her fingertips. I was impressed that at every step of the way I heard "You've got one of the best on your side".
Margaret's staff are top-notch as well. They were quick to respond to questions, knew what to refer to Margaret and what they could handle, and kept things running smoothly.
"Dear Margaret: Many thanks of your professionalism and knowledge of the Family Law and of my needs and feelings. I am very impressed with U practice. You're a gem. - Patrick"
I met with several attorneys asking for help with separation, child custody and property settlement, all of which needed a retainer that I did not have. I was told that my case was too complex or that it would take too much time. I felt that my voice would not be heard and I was afraid of how I could stand up to what was right. Fortunately , Margaret Bender had the patience and heart it took to win my case. She has the knowledge of many areas in law, the drive and the courage to solve the problems that I could not do on my own. Thanks to Margaret Bender, my children and I look forward to a better and brighter future.
My experience with Margaret Bender may be unusual. Ms. Bender came highly recommended by a former prosecutor. Over a five month period, I had numerous interactions with Ms. Bender to try to resolve my case efficiently and effectively. In two cases, I made appointments which were not honored by her or her office. In the first case, I waited for nearly half an hour until Ms. Bender sauntered in, chatted with another person in the waiting area, and then acknowledged my presence. Ms. Bender denied that an appointment had been made. When I presented the email confirming the appointment, her only response was “oops.” In the second case, I had an appointment with her staff for a telephone consultation. The staff member apparently took a “walk-in” over my appointment. Of course, I received an apology, but had I sat for an hour by my phone waiting for a call that never happened. When I asked for comment on an emailed negotiation position I couldn't get a straight response, but was invited to come to her office to “talk about it.” Subsequently, I ended up paying her full rate of $275 per hour for her to drive to and from the courthouse. She was late to the courthouse, in Everett, but the few minutes she spent on my behalf were effective. She was able to persuade the commissioner to not triple my support payment as my spouse was requesting, although I suspect the commissioner didn't require much persuasion. It may be only coincidence, but it was only after I sent a message to the state Bar association trying to find out if she was still practicing after weeks of non-response that I was able to get a response from her. Ms. Bender submitted a request for a court date on my behalf to apply pressure to my spouse. In an apparent oversight, I was not informed of this. First, this tactic wasn't necessary; my spouse was actually willing to settle quickly for 20% less than I expected. Second, if I correctly understand the Washington Bar Association ethics rules, posted online, taking this step without informing me is not "okay." I switched to another attorney after months of trying to make progress via Ms. Bender. With my new lawyer, my case was completed in a few days, at an hourly rate of 30% less than Ms. Bender's (with no charge for transportation to the courthouse). Yes, I did get a refund check from Ms. Bender for the remainder of my retainer/trust fund, but my financial institution wouldn't honor it. Ms. Bender had written, and then overwritten the amount without initialing the correction. A simple error, but I’m apparently not the only one to experience faulty checks from her. Ms. Bender couldn't understand why my going to a financial institution and having a check rejected might be a problem. Details seem to be other peoples' problems. Keeping appointments, writing checks, simply responding to emails. My needs required the services of an attorney who recognized that attention to detail is as big a part of the job as being convincing for 10 minutes in front of a commissioner. My communications with Ms. Bender, including the last concerning the check that was refused, indicated that she simply did not comprehend why I might be less than satisfied. The lawyer I switched to was easily as pleasant as Ms. Bender, but in addition he was able to start at approximately where Ms. Bender had been two months prior, and concluded the whole process in just over a week. Would I recommend Ms. Bender? Absolutely not. Again, my experience may be highly unusual. You be the judge.
She is great and all my paper work was done on time and accurately I will recomend Maragarett to anyone that is looking for a responsible lawyer.
Please fell free to use me as a reference anytime. I'm sure you saved me well over $100,000!!! Nice work.
Margaret was assertive and able to achieve the result I needed when settling my case. - Gregg B
Margaret handled my complex divorce case which involved relocation, child custody, and property division. The odds were clearly stacked against us, but she did an excellent job in the trial that lasted several weeks. Thanks to her experience as a skilled trial attorney, I have obtained successful results.
Thanks - Stephanie
Ms. Bender represented me in a very contentious custody matter. When I first met with her I was scared and considering giving in to my ex, but she kept me and my children’s best interest at heart and stopped me from making a costly mistake. Her vast knowledge of family law is amazing and she aggressively represented me through trial. Margaret Bender is a competent, respected attorney who excels under pressure - I would recommend her to anyone!