What to do about an unprofessional attorney?

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What to do about an unprofessional attorney?

I hired a lawyer to file a Chapter 7. I started payment to them in 08/09 and finished final payment in 01/10. However each time my lawyer has an excuse that something has come up and I get rescheduled. I have now been rescheduled again to 02/09/11. It has taken me 1 1/2 years to file and now I have to keep taking the credit counseling service all over again which costs me more money. What can I do? I feel like I am getting nowhere and can not make a fresh start. What do you do when you are being taking advantage by your own lawyer? I hired them to do a job. I trusted them  to do the job professionally.

Asked on December 7, 2010 under Business Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

First, if the lawyer is not doing the work you hired him to do, consider strongly firing him and getting a new lawyer--why keep paying him to not do what you want, and why keep trusting yourself to someone you don't seem to trust?

Second, with your new lawyer, consider whether you may have a cause of action against the old lawyer for legal malpractice, in which case, if  you did, you could sue him for compensation (e.g. to recover what you paid, as well as for additional costs you've incurred due to his negligence).

Third, also consider whether either in addition to or in lieu of suing the attorney, you want to file an ethical grievance with the office of your state court system which regulates attorney behavior.


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