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Ask Ely Your Own Question
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 102597
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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How do I remove my child custody attorney from record,

Customer Question

How do I remove my child custody attorney from record, before the final orders are entered? He did a terrible job on my case, and I no longer want him involved. Unfortunately I was with him through the trial, and I was told that because of this this means
he's now legally obligated to finish the final orders before he can withdraw. Now the other side is racking up a phone bill with my attorney unnecessarily, and surely he's going to end up coming after me for the bill. And the other side has filed an objection,
which I cannot afford for him to pay to defend. I need to be able to respond to the objection myself. I already told him I do not need his help in these other matters he's been discussing on the phone with the other side, just that I need him to get the final
orders done (so I can get rid of him). It's been a month and a half since the trial, and I have not yet seen a proposed draft final order from him. I believe he is intentionally stalling so that he can get a lien and take the chump change of attorney fees
I was awarded. At this point I would HIGHLY prefer to write and file my own orders, as I do not trust them to write theirs, nor do I want to pay him to write his sloppy version. What do I need to do to get him removed as my attorney of record? This sounds
insane to me that I'm legally required to continue letting him bill me even though I do not want or need his help.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (A) This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms; and (B) the site allows experts not participate in phone calls and I may or may not be able to participate in this feature.I am sorry to hear about this situation. This is actually done by the attorney. All that someone in your situation has to do - if they want the attorney to withdraw - is to send them a certified letter stating so. Then, the attorney will file a Motion to Withdraw and since the client is on board with this, the Court should sign off on it.That is all it takes.I hope this helps and clarifies. Gentle Reminder: Use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how I get credit for my time with you. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars or failing to submit the rating does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I was told that the attorney cannot withdraw while the final orders are still pending, as he has a legal obligation to finish the orders, which means he cannot withdraw.
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
This is not 100% true. When close to trial or in final negotiations, the Court not wish to let an attorney go because this can disadvantage the client. However, if both the attorney AND the client agree, then generally, the Court approves.Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
If we were both in agreement about this then I wouldn't be posting here :-) As stated in my original post is that I believe he is doing this intentionally to rack up a bigger bill so he can get a lien on the attorney fees I was ordered.So unfortunately I'm still looking for an answer for my original question. Any ideas?
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Have you asked your attorney formally to withdraw?If you have, what did they do/say? Ignore you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Last week the other side was causing some problems and racking up the phone bill with my attorney, so I asked him if I can take over from here, which is when he informed me that he cannot withdraw until the final orders are signed off by the judge. I talked to another attorney last night who told me the only way I can get rid of him is to substitute him for another attorney. But I asked here because I don't know if this attorney possibly said this just to get me to pay him to take over writing my final orders. It seems insane to me that I'm legally bound to this guy who I do not trust, do not have the ability to pay, and do not want him doing anything more with my file... but that I need to continue with him until he finishes my orders. But like I said, it's been a month and a half since the trial, I don't think I'll be seeing a draft of my proposed orders anytime soon. Any ideas on how to get rid of him? This means the system is literally forcing me to have to pay him for his services that I don't want. If I don't pay he'll just get an attorneys lien on the attorney fees I'm supposed to have coming to me.
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
I stand by my original answer. The way to ask an attorney to withdraw is by formal letter (for proof of the request), and then the attorney has to file said motion to withdraw. Then the Court decides. An attorney cannot generally deny the request to withdraw and must honor it even if they believe the Court will turn down the motion.
Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.