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I had a sleep and fall accident in 2009. I had a spine surgery in april 2012. I ve hired a personal injury attorney

Brooklyn, NY |

I had a sleep and fall accident in 2009. I had a spine surgery in april 2012. I ve hired a personal injury attorney but i m very unhappy with the way my case has been handled. Its been three years already and he just filled my note of issue two weeks ago. That means in Brooklyn courts we wont be able to get a trial date in 12-15 months. So my case will take more than 4 years to settle. thats very unreasonable! I want to fire my attorney how is that possible to break the contract that I signed with him? He desrves very little money! Maybe possibly i Could hire someone else.

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Attorney answers 7


It is you and not him that is being unreasonable. From what you said he has moved the file with all due speed. Many things go into a lawsuit that a lawyer cannot control - the insurance adjuster does not want to settle; someone does not appear for a deposition; the other side moves to dismiss; discovery dates are broken; medical records take time to get. 4 years to settle a case is quick in Brooklyn, and if the defendant / insurance company does not want to settle there is nothing you can do.


You are always free to hire a new lawyer. If you do that, the new attorney will deal with the old attorney both to tell him that you have a new lawyer and on the fee issue. Sometimes cases take time to move so 3 years might not be unreasonable - I'm sure you didn't file suit right away. There is nothing a new attorney can do to make the case go faster at this point. There will be a series of pre-trial and/or settleement conferences in court before an actual trial. am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle personal injury cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 385-8015 or via email at

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 385-8015 or via email at The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


Unfortunately, with the NY courts being as busy as they are, lawsuits are slow in progressing to either trial or settlement. Since we don't know all of the facts as you present them, your current lawyer may have had very good reasons to wait this long to file the Note of Issue. There may have been discovery issues, motion practice (which takes a while to get through in the courts) and other delays which may have been out of his or her control, including the fact that you recently had surgery.

With the Note of Issue already filed, you will most likely not find too many personal injury lawyers to take over the case. I would not necessarily fire your current lawyer in haste. Instead, I would set up a meeting and speak to your lawyer about your overall concerns.

Best of luck.

This post is for informational purposes only. The above information is not to be construed as legal advice.


I must agree with Mr. Palumbo. While it is difficult to have to wait this long for a case to resolve, it is certainly not the attorney's fault. Once a lawsuit is filed it is often several years before it is totally resolved at trial . What may have delayed your case was your waiting almost 3 years to have the spinal surgery. that could have delayed the discovery phase of you case by almost a year between having to amend his pleadings and having to wait for the defendants to get the medical records themselves. Your attorney is on track time wise. Cut him some slack. From what you have told us, unless there are other issues that you did not mention, he seems to have done everything possible to move your case.

Mr. Pascale is licensed to practice law in the State of New York. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and time-lines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Pascale strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to insure proper advice is received.


I agree with everything my colleagues have said so far. Assuming your surgery was related to the fall, processing your case any quicker might have jeopardized realizing the full potential of the case. The time here does not appear to be unreasonable at all.

Disclaimer- The information you obtain at our web-site or through postings on such sites as this is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for specific advice regarding your individual situation. Any response given here is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response may change appropriately.


You may fire the at any time. Hire a new one and the new attorney will make sure all of the procedures to be substituted will be accomplished.

Yefim Rubinov

Yefim Rubinov


but my colleagues above are correct.


Your lawyer is not the problem. If you had spine surgery in April 2012 then you should be glad your case is still on the calendar and not yet in the trial assignment part. ( where if it were, your attorney would be scrambling to adjourn it) Your case is not ready to be tried. Are you still treating? Are you still receiving physical therapy? If so, it would be premature for your surgeon or treating ortho/neuro to give any opion with regard to the permanency of your injury. Without that opinion, you don't have a viable claim for future pain and suffering or future economic loss. It is that component of damages that will, if proven, earn you the highest damages award or settlement.

Please be advised that this communication does not construe an attorney/client relationship.

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