Table of Contents
- Reasons to Fire a Lawyer
- How to Fire a Lawyer
- Other Considerations
- How to Prevent a Need to Fire
- Know your state’s bar rules for filing a complaint against your lawyer.
- Understand your lawyer’s fee agreement.
- Gather any materials to support your reasons for firing your lawyer.
- Get a new lawyer.
If you have decided to fire your lawyer, you may have already identified the reasons why. Common reasons include:
- The lawyer mishandled your case or failed to follow through on commitments.
- The lawyer is not adequately representing your interests.
- The lawyer won’t respond to your calls or emails.
- The lawyer is not professional or ethical.
Firing a lawyer can be a difficult decision, but if you feel that it must be done, you should follow certain steps to ensure that the process is done correctly.
- Check your state’s bar rules for filing a complaint against your lawyer. You may also contact your state bar for advice on filing a complaint.
- Understand your lawyer’s fee agreement. If you have already paid your lawyer in full for their services, you may still be responsible for their fees for the portion of the work they completed.
- Gather any materials to support your reasons for firing your lawyer. This may include emails, contracts, and other documents that you feel would be useful to support your decision.
- Get a new lawyer. Make sure to find a lawyer that is a good fit for you and your case.
- Write a letter to your lawyer. You should be polite and professional in your communication with your lawyer, even if you feel frustrated or angry. Make sure to include the reasons why you are firing your lawyer, the portion of the fee that you are paying, and any other relevant information. You should also keep a copy of the letter for your records.
- Follow up with your lawyer. Once you have sent the letter, you should follow up with your lawyer to ensure that they have received your letter and are aware of your decision.
There are a few other items to keep in mind when firing a lawyer:
- Be sure to keep copies of all documents related to your case.
- You may need to hire a new lawyer to take over your case.
- You may need to pay a new lawyer’s retainer fee.
- You may be responsible for paying your former lawyer’s outstanding bills and filing fees.
You can prevent the need to fire your lawyer by taking certain steps at the outset of your relationship. These steps include:
- Choosing a lawyer who is a good fit for your case.
- Researching the lawyer’s past cases and client reviews.
- Getting a clear understanding of the lawyer’s fee agreement.
- Discussing the lawyer’s communication policy.
- Asking how often you can expect to hear from the lawyer.
- Discussing expectations for the case.
- Making sure that the lawyer is open to feedback.