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A.J.
A.J., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
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Experience:  Experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney.
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ForSavyLawyer Hi again. I have one more question before

Resolved Question:

ForSavyLawyer

Hi again. I have one more question before I call the main attorney.

The fact that there was another attorney representing us and we were not told that he was/and was from another firm and that he and the attorney present were husband and wife.

I forgot to mention in this long diatribe that she "knew" I was told emphatically by the Trustee and the lawyer that my wife would have to appear. All that happened was when I answered under oath I was dismissed. I never spoke with the attorney at the Trustee meeting (husband) as he had a case coming up and that I was finished. I really was in an awkward position when I later found out they were husband and wife.
Should have been disclosed?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Wendy-Mod replied 1 year ago.
Hi, I am a moderator for this topic. I sent SavyLawyer a message to follow up with you here, when they are back online. If I can help further, please let me know. Thank you for your continued patience.

Regards,
Wendy
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Maybe you're too busy. Should I open this up?

Expert:  Wendy-Mod replied 1 year ago.
We can certainly open this up to other lawyers if you'd like. Just let me know.

Regards,
Wendy
Expert:  A.J. replied 1 year ago.
Hello again! I apologize for the delay in responding, I was ill and off of the site for a day. Hopefully I can still adequetely answer your question.

As a general matter, an attorney must let a client know that someone other than the attorney that was retained is going to appear to represent that client. This gives the client the opportunity to refuse representation where they are uncomfortable having another attorney appear. This is particularly true where the new attorney is not in any way professionally afilliated with the attorney that was retained (such as being part of the same firm, etc). As with previous issues discussed, this arguably falls under the communication rule. It is important for an attorney to communicate with a client as to which attorney will be appearing to represent them, as this can effect the representation, and must about anything that can effect the representation should be communicated to the client.

Now, whether or not the marital relationship should have been disclosed is a slightly different discussion. Presumably there was no extra money paid to the new attorney, and they were just filling in at the 341 meeting for the original attorney. So long as the marital relationship will not have any effect on the representation or the incurring of new fees, there is a good argument to make that the relationship did not need to be disclosed. What needed to be disclossed was that a different attorney would be appearing to represent the client at the meeting, but the marital relationship probably did not raise a conflict of interest where no new fees or benefit was incurred by the attorney.

I hope this makes sense, and let me know if you have any additional questions or you need clarification, I am happy to chat further, just use the reply box below. As always, feel free to request me directly (which can be done in addition to just putting my name in the question title), and please remember to RATE my answer so that I can receive credit for my work.
A.J., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 4259
Experience: Experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney.
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