Can I get a refund on money paid to an attorney if I am not satisfied? 18 Answers as of February 06, 2014

I hired a bankruptcy lawyer, which I am not happy with. I have only paid half to her can I get a refund and fire her?

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David R. Fondren, Attorney at Law
David R. Fondren, Attorney at Law | David R. Fondren
That depends on the contract and how much work she has already done for you. You should sit down in person with her and explain your problems. You may or may not accept her explanation. You may or may not want to give her another chance. If not, ask for an accounting and a refund.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 2/6/2014
Stuart P Gelberg
Stuart P Gelberg | Stuart P Gelberg
Your attorney is entitled to keep a reasonable amount for the services she actually performed and is required to refund the rest.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 12/26/2013
Garner Law Office
Garner Law Office | Daniel Garner
It depends on what your retainer agreement says if you signed one, and how much work the attorney did for you. You always have a choice of counsel, but if the attorney did a lot of work on your case, you may have to pay her for the work she did. Otherwise, she can assert a lien on any documents you want to get back. If your dissatisfaction stems from serious neglect of your case or what you believe is malpractice, you might have a claim against the lawyer. In that case, you should express your concerns to her as another reason for a refund.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 12/26/2013
Kirby G. Moss PC | Kirby G. Moss
You should look at the written fee agreement with her. It's likely that you would owe for work already done.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 12/26/2013
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
Yes, minus any work she did.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/26/2013
    Idaho Bankruptcy Law | Paul Ross
    Typically yes. You will have to review the contract you signed. Usually an attorney just bills for the time they have spent on a case and if there is retainer left, they will return the difference. If you have issues, contact your state bar regarding the issue.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis | Todd Mannis
    Question is how much work was done so far.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C.
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C. | Stuart M. Nachbar
    You can try.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    You can certainly fire any attorney that you are not happy with, but whether you are entitled to a refund of any deposit you have paid will depend on the amount of work already performed on the case. Just setting up your file, performing a full consultation, reviewing your pay records and tax returns can run up several hundred dollars of legal fees.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Scott Goldstein | Scott Goldstein
    You can always fire an attorney. The amount of refund, if any, however, is going to depend on her policies and how she bills.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Davis Law SC | D. Nathan Davis
    The answer is, it depends. If a lot of work has been done by your attorney, then, she may not be willing to give back all of the money she has collected from you. Sometimes, just sitting down with your attorney and talking to him or her works out the kinks in the relationship. The attorney may also agree to refund the money because he or she does not want you talking about the attorney badly. It is not a bad thing that you and the attorney are not working out as a team very well. This happens more than you would think and that is because there are two sides. Sometimes, lines of communication get snarled up and then the attorney would rather have you leave than be unhappy. Clients who are not happy are much more trouble than they are worth. Most of the time, the problems are caused by differing expectations of what will happen in a case. You should call the attorney, set up an appointment to meet with the attorney and let the attorney know why you want to meet with the attorney. Most attorneys value their reputation more than fees that you may have paid. If all else fails, you can file a dispute with the fee dispute board which will issue a ruling as to whether you should receive a full refund, a partial refund or no refund.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    Did you sign a fee agreement (i.e. contract) with the attorney? Whether you are entitled to a refund will depend on the terms of the contract and the amount of work the attorney has performed for you. If you believe your attorney has not earned the fee already paid, you should call the local bar association and ask for information on fee arbitration.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Deborah F Bowinski, Attorney & Counselor at Law | Debby Bowinski
    You should review your retainer agreement which should set out when and how fees are earned. Depending upon what and how much work has been done by the lawyer, you may or may not be entitled to a full or partial refund.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Law Office of Michael Johnson
    Law Office of Michael Johnson | Michael Johnson
    Depends on the retainer agreement you signed.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Moffa & Bonacquisti, P.A.
    Moffa & Bonacquisti, P.A. | John A. Moffa
    It is possible.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    Ferguson & Ferguson
    Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
    It depends on your contract and if she has done the work or filed the bankruptcy yet?
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 12/26/2013
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    You should look at the retainer agreement and how many hours they have worked on your file. You should be entitled to some refund if they have not used up all the hours on your case.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 12/26/2013
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