With a lawyer like Todd, you won't even need an opponent.
I was referred to Todd Lewis by the Virginia Bar Association. That isnâ€™t a recommendation â€“ it only means no complaints about his conduct have been upheld (so far).
When I met Todd, it was in his office in Alexandria. There was a paralegal/admin assistant in front and another attorney working as part of the firm. It was a going concern.
Seven months later, all that is gone. He doesnâ€™t have an office, the paralegal quit, and the other attorney left too. I now know why.
From the day he got my money, working with Todd was a constant exercise in trying to get him to produce. The days, the weeks, and the months ticked by â€“ and Todd procrastinated; talking and talking but rarely working.
The day I hired him, Todd promised to have a letter to our opposing party in two days. Ten days later, after I called and emailed him repeatedly, he actually got that one-page letter done. And that was by far the fastest thing he ever produced.
Following that (with my $2500 retainer in his pocket) he settled down and didâ€¦ nothing.
I waitedâ€¦ and waitedâ€¦ and waited. Finally, after months of him ignoring my emails and calls I got so fed up that I decided to fire him.
But Todd is a great talker. And if that was what being a lawyer is, then heâ€™d be awesome. He swore that his lack of diligence was the result of temporary circumstance and a crush of deadlines; that now heâ€™d get in the game, take care of business.
Of course, he wanted more money, too. And like an idiot, I gave it to him.
Now he had $5000 of mine in his pocket. But since I had actively threatened to fire him, he finally produced the complaint â€“ THREE MONTHS after I hired him. It wasnâ€™t very good, but at least it was movement.
Thenâ€¦ well, you know already. He went back to doing nothing. Only that was a problem, because opposing counsel (gasp!) actually responded. Not that I knew, since Todd didnâ€™t tell me about it until I called him again â€“ a full month after we filed the complaint.
Oh yeah, said Todd, they responded, but donâ€™t worry about it. Itâ€™s easy.
Except, guess what? Todd didnâ€™t do anything.
I called back after a couple weeks. He promised to answer them. Gave specific dates that he would respond. Then, like always, failed to meet them.
I called him back again. He gave more dates, failed to meet those too, duh.
Then he went on vacation. Probably used my money.
Six weeks after filing their pleading, the opposing lawyers set a date to have it heard in court, stating that they couldnâ€™t wait forever for Todd to answer them. I was now looking at losing on a technicality.
I called Todd again. And he gave me a speech about how he would read the case while riding the metro on the way to court, and come up with a brilliant strategy in those final moments. Then he whipped up a blustery email, devoid of facts or research, and sent it to their lawyers. In which email he acceded to their primary, and easily rebutted, demand.
Consider... the other side provided a standard operating procedure softball response. They had the burden of proof and didnâ€™t come anywhere near providing it. But rather than do his job, Todd was going with it. And he wanted me to buy into the fantasy that he didnâ€™t need to work or prepare like regular lawyers do, that somehow he would magically pull victory out of the air at the last second.
That was enough. The impending disaster was way too clear. I fired him and stuck to it.
When I asked for a refund of half my money Toddâ€™s reply was that even though we had a flat fee agreement, he was now going to put together an invoice billing me by the hour; that I owed HIM more money.
Consider that. His response to my pulling out before he could throw my case away wasnâ€™t to show integrity and refund my retainer balance â€“ it was, instead, to threaten me.
So hereâ€™s some advice. If you find yourself headed to Todd for legal help, turn around. And donâ€™t walk awayâ€¦
Response from Todd Lewis April 12, 2018
First, let me start by saying that on behalf of my firm and myself that I am very sorry that this former client did not receive the level of customer service, support and the results that we pride ourselves on providing to our clients. As a whole, I have successfully found solutions to hundreds of individuals' and business' legal issues for over seven years and while one bad review doesn't stand for the majority of happy clients, for me, even one unhappy client is not acceptable. I have styled my practice and my methods to ensure that any work that I perform on a client's legal matter is performed in a prompt and efficient manner and that I manage the case in a way that not only saves money but obtains results, I strive to handle every case as if it were my own legal matter.
Second, my door is always open, I answer my own telephone and I stand by my actions because I use my real name at all times. While I may not agree with what the reviewer wrote, it is the comments of former clients, which is what helps me sharpen my skills and to develop better, more efficient methodologies in my practices. I honor any comment left by a former client and look forward to receiving many more positive reviews from happy, reasonable, former clients.
-Todd Lewis, Esquire