Good evening. I'll be assisting you with your question.
Yes, any contract is subject to the statute of frauds.
Can you tell me a little more about the agreement?
Let me be more specific, any contract for the sale of goods is subject to the statute of frauds.
Was there a length of time given for your attorney client relationship?
Below is the Michigan statute: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/%28S%28uvngmgzyjwcxjofdhkru4km5%29%29/mileg.aspx?page=getobject&objectname=mcl-440-2201
I ask because one of the types of contracts that must be in writing are contracts that are over a year in duration.
The only Michigan statute that requires contracts to be in writing is the statute I've provided above. Let me look into a few things. It will only take a moment.
I'll look for something, but I know that generally speaking, oral contracts for services are binding.
The elements of an oral contract are no different than a written contract. They are 1) offer; 2) acceptance; 3) consideration, 4) mutuality of obligation
Mutuality of obligation is another way to state "meeting of the minds."
It is basically that both parties agree and understand what they are agreeing to. They must be agreeing to the same thing at the same time.
So if you and the attorney did not agree to the same thing, or at least have the same understanding of the agreement, there was not an enforceable contract.
A breach is one party not living up to the terms. What is a breach largely depends on the contract.
In a situation like that, you would likely have an argument against those fees, as they were not authorized by you and, if there had been in a contract, they would not have been within its scope.
Also, you can argue that there was not a contract because there was never a meeting of the minds. You could argue that you understood the agreement to hold that you would be allowed to determine how to deal with opposing counsel.
Potentially, yes. Anything you say to your attorney that is related to your case is protected communication.
You could. You could also make a report to the state bar.
Just so you don't get your expectations up, you should not expect much to come of that breach. A court would likely view it as a "harmless" breach.
In theory, yes, but I would advise against it. You should focus your arguments where they will do the most good: attacking the supposed oral contract. You don't want to dilute your arguments with rabbit trails that are very unlikely to pan out in your favor.
Potentially, yes. It could possibly be attorney malpractice.
It really depends on the nature of the hearing and what impact it had on the overall outcome of the case.
If there was case law clearly supporting your position and he failed to discover it, that is legal malpractice.
OK. If there was case law clearly supporting your position, you have a malpractice claim that is, at a minimum, worth exploring.
I don't think I will be able to make a fair evaluation just based on a few chats.
It will always be accessible through your profile. It won't disappear once this chat is over.
Can I do anything else for you?
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