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Joseph, Family Law Attorney
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Experience:  I have over a decade of experience as a Family Law litigator
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I am in the middle of a very bitter divorce. Subpoenas

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I am in the middle of a very bitter divorce.

Subpoenas have been requested by both sides. Hence my question:

The wording of my subpoenas say that the subpeona is returnable for November 15, 2010 at 10:00 am. On the cover letter of the documents it is followed by: "pursuant to NJ Court Rules, you are not to produce or release the subpoenaed documents until the date set forth in the Subpeona for Depositions, specifically, November 15, 2010". The deposition was schelduled for the returnable date but then subsequently postponed. Have the requested documents already been received by my attorney or were they put on hold until such time that a deposition is rescheduled?

In the same vain, the plaintiff's attorney requested subpeonas and noted a returnable date of January 6, 2011 and states the same language about not to produce or release the subpeonaed docs until the date set forth in the subpoena for Depositions, "specifically, January 6th". In this case, I am not aware of any depositions scheduled. Are the documents released before a deposition date is set?

Do I have a right to see the documents supplied in response to the subpeonas my attorney sent on my behalf if they were released. His date was Nov. 15, 2010?

If I release my attorney from representing me on this coming Monday, while meeting with him, Do I have the right to demand all of my documents at that time and walk out with them or does he have an opportunity to delay my request for my documents in any way and charge me for the time to compile my documents?

If he does not have to give them to me at that very time, can I advise him to do nothing more on my behalf to avoid any other charges?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

Have the requested documents already been received by my attorney or were they put on hold until such time that a deposition is rescheduled?

  • Maybe. Pursuant to the language contained on the face of the subpoenas, the documents should not have been released as the deposition was canceled. As such, the deponent should hold onto the documents until the re-scheduled deposition date. Having said that, the deponent is, presumably, not an attorney. With that in mind, he may have unknowingly released the documents to your attorney.

 

 

In this case, I am not aware of any depositions scheduled. Are the documents released before a deposition date is set?

  • Something seems out of place here. Using the plain language on the subpoena, there should have been a deposition scheduled. After all, why else include that language? My speculation is that the issuing attorney inadvertently included that language, forgot to coordinate the deposition, your attorney hasn't notified you or it was canceled before you were ever made aware of it.

 

 

Do I have a right to see the documents supplied in response to the subpoenas my attorney sent on my behalf if they were released. His date was Nov. 15, 2010?

  • Absolutely, you have a right to inspect every document supplied, generated or maintained in the course of the litigation.

 

 

If I release my attorney from representing me on this coming Monday, while meeting with him, Do I have the right to demand all of my documents at that time and walk out with them or does he have an opportunity to delay my request for my documents in any way and charge me for the time to compile my documents?

  • You have the right to demand/request the documents. However, the attorney has an ethical obligation to maintain a complete file, even if you discharge him from representing you. Additionally, he may very well have a busy practice and the documents may be extensive. As such, it is certainly possible that he would need some time, perhaps a day or two, to copy the documents for you. Further, if you owe him any fees, he may refuse to release the documents until the issue is resolved.

 

 

If he does not have to give them to me at that very time, can I advise him to do nothing more on my behalf to avoid any other charges?

  • Whether or not he gives you the documents, you have the right to tell him to cease any efforts on your behalf. If you do this, I would assume you intend to hire new counsel in the very near future. Otherwise, the net effect is you have no attorney as you've instructed this one to do nothing for you. In that situation, one would hope there is nothing pressing occurring in the case as you may be harmed by the directive of pursuing no action given to your current attorney.

 

 

Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

You may need to know that the two attorneys are exerting whatever means possible to extend the case. I have not been advised of a deposition which is supposedly set for this Thursday and feel that the information will be released without merit. What, if anything, can be done to avoid the despondent in releasing these documents at this time? If fact, if it was cancelled wouldn't the bank (despondent) be advised of that?

Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

Yes, if the deposition was canceled, the deponent certainly should have been notified. While I did indicate in my initial answer that the documents may still have been released, the presumption is that they were not released.

 

To ensure this result, you should contact your attorney. While I can certainly understand your frustrations with the attorney, the fact is he still represents you....until you release him. Until that time comes, call him and check on whether the documents were released and, assuming they have not been, communicate to him that you want to make sure they are not released until the deposition is re-scheduled.

 

 

Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.

Joseph, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7279
Experience: I have over a decade of experience as a Family Law litigator
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Joseph
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I have over a decade of experience as a Family Law litigator