In my answer I also let the attorneys attorney know that I have retained a certified auditor to review the billing. A formal report will be produced, presented as evidence in my case and copied to the Georgia State Bar along with my complaint. If the attorney does not agree to refund the unearned fees. Each invoice contained the same billing for approximately 4 attorneys prior to termination and 2 after termination. I basically paid for this firm to retain 7 attorneys with no action taken in my case.
Construction / Development Lawyer
Your question is quite a bit unclear but if I understand this you are being sued by your attorney and have paid to hire an auditor to analyze his bills. I think this may be overkill as attorney bills are usually not too difficult to figure out. Go to court, present your evidence or better yet, ask the attorney to submit your dispute to the State Bar Fee Dispute Program and have them hear you case. If your attorney is fair and his bills are fair, he should have no objection to having the case presented to the bar.
This is not intended to create an attorney client relationship and none is to be implied either. You must contact an attorney and present all facts before you can and should act on this response
Ethics / Professional Responsibility Lawyer
Parties to a dispute are free to settle any time and at any stage. If your dispute is substantial it would be to your advantage to have an attorney to represent you. It may seem like throwing good money after bad, but in fact good legal advice is usually worth what you pay for it.
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The answer to your question (as I understand it) is "yes, you and the lawyer can settle prior to the the magistrate court hearing." Actually, you can even settle "after" the hearing (i.e., if you lose and threaten to appeal the magistrate court judgment, the parties could settle then, too). In essence, the parties are free to settle their claims whenever they deem it in their respective best interests to compromise and settle their claims against one another.