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I have been a victim of a frivolous small claims suit, it was a baseless attempt to extort money from me. I have a legit Counter

Palm Beach, FL |

Suit on it. I hired and payed an attorney to represent me. The plaintiff is not persuing his claim anymore, since I have mounting evidence against him and his fake witnesses. He did cost me attorneys and Court fees, I am going to law school and was not pleased with my attorney's work or with his newfound friendship with the plaintiff when he was trusted to go to the mediations without me. He is steping down from my case. Here is the question, even if I don't persue my Counterclaim settlement, in Florida under the Statute 57.105 I should be able to recover my attorney's fees. Is that correct? On my attorney's whitdrawal upcoming hearing can I file this motion myself? This frivolous lawsuit was filed 6 months ago and is stale, since the Plaintiff appears to be an aquaintance of the Judge.

This eas not on Palm Beach, but near on Florida.

Attorney Answers 3

  1. It is hard to give you a specific answer without more specific facts. However it is very hard to get a 57.105 award. It would need to be patently clear the defendant knew he was filing a false, or baseless claim. Merely because one side looses, or cannot present sufficient evidence does not satisfy the requirement. Otherwise for example, every time the court grants summary judgment finding the law is firmly in favor of one side, vs, the other, the losing party would be subject to fees and costs. As for representing yourself that is your right, but generally not advisable. If you believe the judge has a favorable relationship with the other side and cannot be impartial you should ask him/her to withdraw. Good luck.

    Jonathan Groff's practice is devoted to all aspects of personal injury litigation throughout Florida However, this reply should NOT be considered a legal opinion of your case / inquiry. At this time I do not have sufficient factual/legal documentation to give a complete answer to your question and there may be more to the issues you raised then I have set out in my brief reply. Further, unless your matter concerns Florida law, I am not licensed to practice or give legal advice in your state.

  2. More importantly, there is a notice provision (service of the motion without filing it) for 57.105 sanctions which creates a safe harbor period. Read 57.105(4).

  3. Another angle might be to simply speak to your former attorney about his bill. You mention his "newfound friendship" w/the plaintiff...this might give you some room to negotiate with regard to what you owe for his work.

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