Unless the Family Court has different rules, once an attorney files a Notice of Appearance she can only be relieved in 2 ways: a) you sign a consent to change attorney form; or b) by filing an Order To Show Cause, which has to be signed by a Judge, and you get a chance to oppose. You should tell the Judge what is going on and you will have to decide whether you want to try and force the lawyer to keep representing you or ask the Judge for an adjournment to obtain new counsel. EIther way, the case will likely be adjourned as your lawyer will not be in court due to no fault of your own.
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) 577-9797 or via email at Eric@RothsteinLawNY.com. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.
Go to Court and explain your situation. I don't think the Court will give you problems and will adjourn the Case in order for you to find a lawyer.
If your attorney filed a Notice of Appearance in Family Court, she cannot withdraw without your consent or a court order. She is still considered your attorney of record at this point. When you go to Court let the judge know what happened with your attorney and ask for an adjournment to retain new counsel. Do not go forward without counsel. You should also send your attorney an email letting her know that she has not been released as your attorney from you or the court and that you expect her to appear on Tuesday. Her behavior violates the rules of ethics that attorneys must comply with when representing clients. Alternatively, you can contact the court clerk and ask for an adjournment on notice to the other side so that you can retain new counsel. ask for an adjournment of the court date before Tuesday, putting the court and the other side.
You go to court for the scheduled appearance, and you bring with you, the attorney's email. You explain this to the Judge and ask for more time to hire a lawyer.
If you'd like to discuss, please feel free to call. Jeff Gold Gold, Benes, LLP 1854 Bellmore Ave Bellmore, NY 11710 Telephone -516.512.6333 Email - Jgold@goldbenes.com
Thanks for updating your question so that we could see what happened. I suggest meeting with several attorneys in your area so that you feel comfortable with your choice. It is always disappointing to hear when lawyers leave clients in a bind - whether intentional or unintentional. I hope you find the representation you seek.
Morghan Leia Richardson, Esq.
Divorce Mediator and Attorney
Richardson Legal PLLC
31-08 Broadway, Suite 204
Astoria, New York 11106