Suing the client

It’s "never pretty" to sue a client. One could be brougt before the state bar disciplinary board, could face a counterclaim for malpractice, and could find one’s malpractice insurance premium increased, not to mention bad publicity.

That is why it is so important that the lawyer be ever alert. That means that the lawyer must carefully go over the engagement agreement with the client during the intake session, including having the client acknowledge that the client has an obligation to pay the billing timely and that the relationship is a two way street.

Also, it means that the lawyer should not continue to work for a client who doesn’t honor this commitment. As I said to a group here in New Orleans today, your first loss is your best loss. When you see that the client isn’t paying timely, why would you continue to work.? Withdraw! (In accord with the RPC)

Otherwise, you’re rewarding poor behavior. Would you do similarly with your children? On second thought, perhaps that’s the problem. But, in this case, you must ask the question:  Would you rather work and not get paid, or would you rather not work and not get paid? The choice is yours.


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