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legalgems
legalgems, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 7629
Experience:  Just Answer consultant at Self employed
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New york, yes l already had a settlement but l think my

Customer Question

Hello Pearl
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: new york
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: yes l already had a settlement but l think my lawyer didn't ive all the money and l cannot find my files in the courts system
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I want to know if l have the right to have the copy of the settlement check..my lawyer refused to give me the copy and the settlement day l was not in the judge office
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

Hello! I will be reviewing your question and posting a response momentarily; if you have any follow up questions please respond here. Thanks!

Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

I am sorry to hear this;

the attorney works on behalf of the client, and therefore the attorney owes the client a fiduciary duty. The client is entitled to receive copies of anything relating to his/her case, and to be kept reasonably informed as to the status of the case.

As such, a client may request a copy of a settlement check, as that will indicate the full amount of settlement. The client would typically sign a release, which states the settlement amount.

Please see Rule 1.4 here (and it is worthwhile to review the rules to see if there were other violations/noncompliance)

If an attorney wrongfully withholds settlement money, they can be sued for damages (ie money wrongfully retained, plus attorney fees and costs). Also a complaint can be filed with the state bar, and if the attorney is guilty, they can be sanctioned (ie license suspension/revocation).

Mismanagement/wrongful appropriation of client funds is a very serious issue.

Complaints can be filed here

https://www.nysba.org/resolvingconflict/

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Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.

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