What to do about a Bad Lawyer?
Hiring a bad or uncommunicative lawyer is a major bother, especially when you’re in the middle of a case. Most people don’t know what to do when their lawyer is doing them a disservice. Here are some strategies that you can use to deal with a lawyer who is causing you worry.
When you’re trying your best to get information about your case, it can be frustrating when your lawyer won’t return calls. You don’t know if there’s something wrong with the case or if the lawyer is just being lazy. If a lawyer doesn’t respond within a reasonable amount of time it is against their ethical code, but that is up for the bar to decide.
Try sending a polite letter asking what is going on with the case and the concerns that you have. Don’t make it too threatening. Saying that you’re going to sue for malpractice or report them to the bar will only make them angry. There could be a very legitimate reason why they haven’t responded. The letter will show that you’re starting to get serious though and they’ll generally respond.
If they continue to cause you difficulty, suggest mediation to fix any communication problems but only if you want to keep that lawyer. You’ll have to weigh their actions with the hassle of switching lawyers in the middle of a case, which is a risky maneuver. If you do want to switch lawyers, we suggest going to another lawyer first and asking their opinion about your first lawyer’s actions. If they agree that you should fire your lawyer, then go ahead and do so. Ask for a copy of your case file so you can give it to your new lawyer. If they are slow at this, have your new lawyer work to get it back and explain the situation.
Dishonest and Incompetent Lawyers
If your lawyer acted terribly, then it’s time to report them to the appropriate agency. In Texas, this is the Texas Bar. Bring as much documentation as you can when you make your complaint. These organizations sometimes work very slowly, but if the claim is valid you can get the lawyer punished. You may also be able to recoup your legal fees from the bar if your complaint is severe enough.
We hope that you never have to deal with an incompetent or uncommunicative lawyer. We screen our legal team to make sure that they all hold the highest ethical standards for their profession. If you need an excellent lawyer, give our offices a call.