I am to sign a percentage, contingency agreement & in the brief agmt I saw no Arbitration clause or any other clause about handling disputes. In agmt, it says when I pay the % of my gross incoming income (for the duration of the royalties, so it could be indefinitely), I pay the fees to my attorney, his assigns, successors & heirs. (The atty says he’s not incorporated, so he does it this way to his heirs, as it is similar to being incorp, which would have survived him.) With the potential for my fees & enforcement of the agmt going to a 3rd party, what if my atty stops practicing, or assigns agmt, which is likely as he is older? Can I still participate in Bar Arb I was entitled to before? if he unilaterally makes this change and a 3rd party is enforcing the agmt and getting royalties?
This is way to complex to analyze without seeing the agreement. The client has a right to fee arbitration probably can't be waived, but this appears to be quite unusual. Percentage of gross incoming income and the relation of that amount to "royalties" is very unclear. It shouldn't take more than an hour or two for a lawyer to review the agreement and reply in detail to your concerns and seek clarifications from the attorney who may represent you, if necessary.
The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.
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