Can another lawyer within the same firm appear for the 'attorney of record' in a divorce case? I signed on with the head lawyer but somehow I have been working with the assistant and I noticed my paperwork with the assistant's name on it saying 'attorney of record'. When I questioned the assistant lawyer, he said it was just formality that the head lawyer was still in charge of my case. Aside from the initial appearance in court by the head lawyer, I have only delt with the assistant, who like I said now bears the title, 'attorney of record'. I am being charged for letters sent to the judge because the head lawyer is unable to attend meetings/ mediation but from what I see he is not the "attorney of record" for my divorce. Is it even legal to do that? I read online that paperwork needed to be filed at the courthouse to change from one lawyer to the other? If that is correct, when were they going to tell me they changed hands? I have papers with the assistant attorney's name on them and others with the head attorney's name on them. Can the head lawyer just fill-in when he is not the 'attorney of record'? Can they charge me for letters the head lawyer is supposedly sending to the judge and adversary saying he cannot attend the meeting when he is not the'attorney of record'? I thought from what I read online that the 'attorney of record' stays with you until the end of your case or you decide to change to another lawyer. Is that true?
Happens all the time. You engaged the firm, not just one member of it. By using an associate, teh firm is saving you money.
Yes. If you don't want an assistant working on your case, then you should have put that in your original contract with your lawyer. Generally, firms will charge for the time by an assistant at a lower rate. Generally the lawyer files an appearance as his name and his firm's name so that he can substitute another lawyer in his firm anytime he wants. Ask him to discuss this with you if you are not happy about it. Yes the attorney of record must stay with you, but if he is sick or tied up with another case, or there is a routine matter that a younger cheaper associate can perform, then he will send an associate.
I agree with Linda. In Markham, criminal lawyers are often mixed up with attorney of records. Its not a big deal but people should educate them when it comes to legal matters. Thanks. http://www.donnellgroup.ca
Other people asked questions on similar topics, check out the answers they received:
Other people asked questions on various topics, and are still waiting for answer. Would be great if you can take a sec and answer them