Do everything in his power to defend his client with every opportunity and witness etc at his disposal?
Provide if requested an accounting for his time that he charged against retainer.
Is violation of either the above an ethical breach the bar would be interested in looking into if violated?
As to "Do everything in his power to defend his client with every opportunity and witness etc at his disposal?" I'd say yes, within reason and ability.
As to "Provide if requested an accounting for his time that he charged against retainer." I'd say it depends.
I charge flat fees, and I do so by written agreement. The fee is clearly spelled out, as is the non-refundable nature and the fact that it is "flat" and not hourly. The client does not need to agree to that but if s/he does then not only will there be no accounting but there will also be no refunds. Everyone knows and agrees to this going in to the relationship and no one forces the client to hire me. If the lawyer in your case does things differently then the answer may be different.
As for the Bar the generally ("generally") do not involve themselves in fee disputes, but that dope not mean that some other ethics rule may have been violated.
I hope that I have been helpful in answering your question.
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An attorney has an ethical obligation to ZEALOUSLY represent his client. Also, if a retainer is paid and an hourly rate is charged, then yes an accounting should be provided to the client. Good luck.
An attorney has a duty to zealously defend their client at all time. However, he/she makes strategy decisions. When you say "every opportunity and witness etc. at his disposal", if these witnesses will help your case, yes. If these witnesses will not help your case, no. For example, if the witness is a convicted felon and can testify only about collateral matters which are not relevant to the case, the attorney can decide, for your best interest, not to call the witness. If the testimony of the witness is so incredible that no one with a brain will believe them, they can choose not to call the witness. If the witness brings baggage to your case that you don't want the jury to know of, then your lawyer, acting in your best interest, can choose not to call the witness to testify.
As to the accounting, I am unaware of any criminal attorney who takes a criminal case on an hourly basis. Most criminal law retainers (like mine) are non-refundable, If you signed a contract which says that the lawyer's retainer is non-refundable, then he/she will not provide you with an accounting and will not be required to. If, however, in the rare case in which your criminal lawyer works on an hourly basis with an up-front retainer, you can and should request an accounting of the time spent on your case. If your lawyer refuses to provide you with an accounting in the situation where he/she charges an hourly rate and has accepted a retainer which is NOT non-refundable (excuse the double negative), then the bar should be notified.
Your questions suggest that you are primarily interested in obtaining a partial refund of fees. The Florida Bar will address your concerns regarding a possible violation of the rules regulating the ethical practice of law. If your complaint has merit, the attorney could be sanctioned.
However, the Bar cannot provide a remedy for ineffective representation. You are suggesting a failure to investigate/prepare. In an instance where a plea is invalid due to ineffective assistance of counsel, that is a matter for the court.
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