I'm the victim of an assault that will require lifelong care . I retained my attorney over 14 months ago ( shortly after the assault ) and his communication with me is horrible . I have a court date scheduled for late September , and so far there have been no depositions done from our side . I have done a deposition for the defense attorney ( also note : my attorney was on his laptop sending emails , etc during my depo ) . There has been no contact with my doctors to get an outline of what my care will be , how I can move forward now , etc . I've expressed my concern with lack of communication many times in the past , they assure me they are actively working on my case . I know this is 1 of the main complaints about lawyers , but I'm wondering if it's finally time to find someone else I'm comfortable with
If you want, then you can switch lawyers. The incoming lawyer will negotiate with the outgoing lawyer with respect to dividing up the legal fee. The legal fee does not effect your share of the settlement. The sooner you switch the more the new lawyer will receive and the less the old lawyer will receive.
As my colleague indicates, switching attorneys is easy. As a client, you must feel comfortable with your attorney for a meaningful working relationship to exist. That being said, your present attorney has been on the case for some time now and a more practical solution may be sitting down with him to express your concerns. If you're still not satisfied at the end of the meeting then moving on would be the next step. I can say you may have some difficulty finding someone at this point to take over the case given the nature of the action, the probable lack of available insurance and the fact the case is already in suit. I think a serious sit down is in order.
Based on your question it seems that you already know the answer. You can fire your attorney at any time. You can find an attorney, or multiple attorneys, to interview on Avvo. However, please comtinue reading.
No one can give you better answers as to the reasons for how things are happening in your case better than your present lawyer. Speak with him first and express your concerns in a non-confrontational tone. Sometimes it is the Courts which delay an action, other times it is the defendants who refuse to appear - and motions may have been filed to compel their appearance. Fourteen months is not a long time for a case to already have had discovery started. Good luck with your case.
Often its about management expectations, and always about communications. You always have teh right to discharge your attorney and retain a new one. However, this should be done with caution and prudence. Providing you have experienced, qualified and diligent counsel my strong suggestion is a face to face meeting. If you and the attorney cannot get on the same page, then perhaps a change is in order. The sooner you act the better. Good luck.
If you can find someone to take over the case you should try. Here are the 2 problems (1) that attorney can assert a file lien for partial payment, and (2) it is an intentional tort. This means that you are probably suing a person without insurance. Unless there is an insurance company to indemnify the defendant in the event of a judgment, it becomes difficult if not impossible to actually collect on the monies you win. If there is insurance for the defendant and your current lawyer would be willing to waive a lien, our office and many others would take the case. If not, you're stuck.
Request a meeting with your attorney and ask to see what has been done. If you are unsatisfied, you can always switch. If you are satisfied, your fears will be gone. However, if you switch, the original attorney will have some share of the attorney's fees, which may create an issue of someone taking the case.
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