Is there a statue of limitations on how long my attorney has to send me a copy of my bill?

I hire my divorce attorney 4 years ago and paid a $2,500 retainer. About 2 1/2 years ago my divorce was finalized. I have been requesting a copy of my bill since then. I have called numerous times and have even sent numerous emails over the last 2 years but I have still not received a copy of my bill. I should add that I have a personal injury case that another firm has been handling (over 4 years). I don’t know if she is waiting for my PI case to be resolved or what. I do not have any documentation stating how many hours she worked on my divorce case to even try and figure out a rough estimate of what the total cost would be. I am at my wits end and have run out of ideas on how to obtain a copy of my bill. Is there a statue of limitations on how long she can withhold my bill or is there something else I could do to get the information I need?

Asked on November 27, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

There is no statute of limitations directly on how long any service provider has to send a bill. However, a debt evidenced by some retainer or service agreement--including for legal services rendered--is typically not enforceable after the statute of limitations for written contracts has expired. You do not indicate which state you are writing from, and statutes of limitation vary by state; typically, for written contracts, it's 4 - 6 years.

The statutory period runs from when the debt would have been due.


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