I did do due diligence in looking for a lawyer. I thought, and I was wrong. My wife, and I have already finished the complaints, mediation, and the preliminary court hearing. I've met with my lawyer only during the 350 dollar consultation. Never spoke again until she looked me in the eye at court, and told my wife's lawyer "my client must be late" that's when I tapped her on the shoulder, and said I've been here fortwo hours. She didn't even tell me that I was supposed to be at justice court not family court which I went to first to be told I need to be in downtown. My next hearing is in late July. I have spent all my money on this lawyer for one form, and showing up to a five minute court session. I have a thousand dollars today, and can have two thousand dollars more before we go
If you like your attorney and feel that they are a strong advocate for you, you should talk to them about your concerns regarding the communication, the fees you have incurred and the work that has been done on the case. Unfortunately litigation can be "a hurry up and wait process" for clients. There is a lot of stuff that happens at the beginning of the case and then the attorneys and the parties have to wait for the judge (wait for a hearing date and/or trial date and/or court orders). In the interim, your lawyer may be trying to talk to the other side about what they want and how to resolve the case. Your lawyer may also be gathering documents on your behalf, doing legal research on your case and preparing the case for trial. Much of this work happens behind the scenes but you will never know what your lawyer has done for you or about your case unless you talk to them. You are entitled to an accounting from your attorney particularly if they bill by the hour. This should include a breakdown of the amount of time they spent on your case, the tasks they worked on and completed and the fees charged for each task.
Again, a good lawyer client relationship requires communication. You need to talk to your attorney and express your concerns. You also need to outline your expectations. If you expect to be updated weekly or monthly on your case, tell your lawyer this is your expectation. If you are calling your attorney and not receiving a response, ask to schedule a meeting to discuss your concerns. If you are simply done with the lawyer, you should look to find another attorney right away. July is not that far away and depending upon what has or has not happened in your case, you need someone to review the file and take it over ASAP.
I agree with Ms. Rosenblum. There's a lot going on in any busy family law practice and we've all had times where we failed to recognize a face we've only met once or twice. That said, I believe the responsibility for communication belongs first to the attorney, so you should share your concerns with her. Recognize too that attorneys are like anyone else with strengths and weaknesses in different areas. Some of the best attorneys in the courtroom have terrible "bedside" manners, and some that are gifted with their clients can be timid in the courtroom. You should find an attorney that has the right balance based upon your needs. Know too that litigation is expensive, so what you have in your pocket has little to do with what representation costs. Most attorneys worth hiring will charge at least $250/hour, and most of the good ones will charge between $300 and $400 per hour. And though we all fall down sometimes, most will have to spend anywhere from 20 to 50 hours or more on a case, before you even get to trial. It depends upon things outside of the lawyers control, like how cooperative the client is in getting requested documents to how contentious the opposing party and their attorney is. So while you might be frustrated with your attorney, you would do best to first approach them with your frustrations. But if, as Ms. Rosenblum says, you are done with them, then you'll need to find another attorney who better suits your needs. And now that you've gone through this experience, you should have some idea of the type of attorney you want to find. Ask around; you'll probably find one.
Responses are for general information purposes only, and are based on the extremely limited facts given. A consultation with an attorney experienced in the area of law(s) indicated in the question is highly recommended. Information and advice given here should not be relied upon for any final action or decision, as the information is limited by its nature to the question asked and the fact(s) presented in that question. THIS RESPONSE DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY/CLIENT RELATIONSHIP, particularly considering that the names of the parties are unknown.
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