Peter Lomtevas, Divorce and separation Attorney on Jun 1, 2013 Relationship: Other
Use extreme caution.
This judge used a trick on me that I capture here. During a pre-trial conference on a divorce case where maintenance is contested, this judge made every effort to coerce me to settle.
She held an in-chambers, off the record meeting that lasted nearly one hour learning of the particular facts of the case without a formal hearing. The danger here is that given the absence of evidence, the judge is forming an opinion of the case and its lawyers. If the judge doesn't like the lawyer, problems start to happen.
She said I malpracticed my client if I did not file more motions demanding items of disclosure of the opponent's business which the civil rules make "compulsory". She said I did not come to the conference ready to discuss settlement: I couldn't do so if I did not know the income stream from the adversary who was hiding information. The most damaging thing Culley did was to go on the record and synopsize the meeting to her benefit.