How can I get my deposit back from a lawyer who did not provide legal service for which the deposit was taken from me?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How can I get my deposit back from a lawyer who did not provide legal service for which the deposit was taken from me?

This attorney collected $5,000 “deposit” (that’s what he called it on the his version of a fee agreement) to represent me in court and to clear the name of my brother because his name was wrongly associated with a criminal conviction. He didn’t earn those fees because: a) he didn’t show up at my arraignment, as court documents show a public defender as my counsel on record; and b) my brother ends up filing a petition for certificate of identity theft, appears in court to plead his case, and get issued a Certificate of Identity Theft–Judicial Finding of Factual Innocence–on his own.

Asked on May 9, 2012 under General Practice, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If a lawyer did not fulfill his professional obligations--including by not showing up for court--he may have committed professional malpractice. The way to seek the return of your money, and possibly other compensation as well, is to sue the attorney for malpractice. This can be a complex case to make, since it requires some knowledge of the attorney ethical/professional standards and also court rules; on the other hand, there are attorneys who specialize in this. You should consult with an attorney who handles lawyer malpractice cases.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption