Over a year ago he filed the opening complaint to my divorce and has since no longer responded to any forms of communication I have attempted. I want to get my divorce finalized but need to remove him from the case. How can I do this when I can't get into contact with him?
I am sorry that you are going through this, a divorce is hard enough without having to go through the added stress. I would call one more time, then send a letter, email and fax just to cover all bases telling the attorney you want to move the case or for him or her to withdraw. If you do not receive a response then file a motion with the court to have the attorney removed from the case and attach the proof of attempted correspondence with it. Take care and hope things work out.
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Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Massachusetts. Responses are based solely on Massachusetts law unless stated otherwise.
I agree with the previous posts, but also suggest that you inquire about disciplinary action available through your state bar. If your attorney has not responded to communication for over one year, then there has likely been a violation of local ethical rules.
You know, in addition, you could simply hire new divorce counsel, have them file a notice of appearance as successor counsel, and proceed from there. Face it, if you do not want the attorney on the case, they will probably be happy to withdraw for whatever reason. Sometimes it is simply better to make a fresh start new counsel. I am sorry that you are going through this. I agree with my colleagues that this may have dire ethical ramifications for this practitioner, if he is still licensed and practicing, unless of course he is retired or deceased. Still, it sounds very odd. You may want to contact the local Bar Association and make an inquiry. Good luck.
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