Lawyer communicating with my ex

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Xena The Warrior Princess

Well-Known Member
3 June 2018
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Not long ago, I had a settlement done, and all paperwork was signed and agreed on. However, my ex prolonged the signing of the documents and was and still is conversing with my lawyer's secretary, putting an ultimatum, such as, if I do not revoke the DVO that was placed by the police on him and drop all the charges against him (he breached DVO and was charged twice) he won't be signing any of the transfer papers he agreed on.
The story got more interesting further on. My lawyers' secretary told me that she had to "nurse" him to make those documents signed as he was crying and carrying on like 2-year-old toddlers. Even though I was clear that I wish that all the communications are via emails, she stated: "As (my ex) is self-represented, we have an obligation to communicate with him in whatever way he contacts us". If the other party does not sign the documents, we could go to court and have them signed via a registrar, as he refused it already.
I know this is just another way of "milking" money out of me and prolonging the agony for almost three years. He never agreed to anything in the past as proposals placed in front of him. I found it is unfair that I could not give orders to a person I am paying for the services.
Are there any ways to stop having these extra charges that I am getting through this particular lawyer, who find it as "playful"? Should I believe that a secretary's role is to "nurse" or "counsel" any party in this situation? I am a qualified professional, but I think that the liberty they have given themselves who believe it is ok to waste my time and my resources are simply cruel, as I am out of pocket and not my ex.

Can anyone please help, guide me? How can I stop all this agony, once and for all?
 

Harry De Elle

Well-Known Member
11 February 2017
58
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Hi,
Firstly, in the Australian criminal justice system the private citizen does not necessarily "press" charges as they do in "hollywood". It is the state enforcement bodies that enforce the law.

Do not correspond with anyone other than your lawyer as much as it may appear tempting to do so. Secretaries have gotten themselves in trouble for not having the authority to act as agent for their legal practice.

All parties have an obligation to facilitate proceedings in a just, timely and cost effective resolution of the disputes.

Anything less than this will be seen by the courts to hinder the proceedings and will be frowned upon. It also potentially exposes the non compliant party to a costs order against them because of such unnecessary behaviour.

Your solicitor should be stepping in and putting your ex on notice if this continues and possible recovery of expenses.
 

Xena The Warrior Princess

Well-Known Member
3 June 2018
94
1
294
Hi Harry De Elle,

Do I have a say in it? Can I tell my solicitor that I want her only to deal with my ex? She clearly stated that her secretary dealt with my ex and asked her for any update?

Any comment is welcome from you or any other members
 

Harry De Elle

Well-Known Member
11 February 2017
58
3
199
As a client you give instructions to your solicitor and they advise you. I think that you should demand that your solicitor only deal with your ex only, no middleperson.
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
4,848
689
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sack your solicitor...
I kinda remember you from previous posts Xena... I can't remember the details but something to do with a title on a house???
Sack your solicitor. Use solicitor's for court and even then you can DIY... But if the ex is having fun at your financial expense by engaging in communication with solicitor just to waste your $$$ sacking the solicitor solves the problem.
 

Xena The Warrior Princess

Well-Known Member
3 June 2018
94
1
294
Sammy, this crossed my mind many times, this is the final bit, and to get it done, she tossed me to her secretary. I did not get all the documents he signed yet. Her secretary is withholding it until all is final, and they will hit me with the bill, including unprofessional "counselling/nursing" from the secretary. Before the settlement was signed, and we were in the process of getting anywhere with it and drafting all the documents as a final proposal, she sent me someone else's documents to review. I was shocked. She did not even apologise for it. I was still charged for her mistakes. I asked if she sent my details to somebody else, as this was a breach of confidentiality. She never answered. I am so disappointed that I had to remind my own solicitors of the dates to go to court, engage or even remember who I was. I only get the bill to pay, and it cost me so much so far.
I found this very harsh and unnecessary.
It is the final thing to do, but I am not impressed by how I was not important even though she will send me the bill with all the unnecessary conversations her secretary had with my ex without my permission. I found it very rude to get an email from her secretary stating: "As (my ex) is self-represented, we have an obligation to communicate with him in whatever way he contacts us." Even though I was so clear with my instructions.
It would be nice to hear your opinion on this.
 

sammy01

Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
4,848
689
2,894
You hired a solicitor whose priorty was making money. You are now knee deep in it and have to take Winston Churchill's advice. "if you're going thru hell, keep going"
 

Xena The Warrior Princess

Well-Known Member
3 June 2018
94
1
294
So there is no way of having a law on my side when it comes to leeches like solicitors. I could give some insights one day and empower another woman not to trust this mob.
 

Atticus

Well-Known Member
6 February 2019
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A couple of observations ....

1) There is a DVO in place that prohibits him from conversing with you in any manner
2) You are negotiating a property settlement

If he can't converse with your lawyers office (at your instruction) then how do you propose anything is to progress?

my ex prolonged the signing of the documents and was and still is conversing with my lawyer's secretary, putting an ultimatum, such as, if I do not revoke the DVO that was placed by the police on him and drop all the charges against him (he breached DVO and was charged twice) he won't be signing any of the transfer papers he agreed on.
While the secretary is not obliged to 'nurse' him, if helping him to cope emotionally is going to get a signature & expedite the process, then it's probably worth it in the long run, both in terms of time & money. Either that or you are going to have to apply to court or accept you are at an impasse.

Another option ...

Your lawyer explains to him that it's not within your power to revoke the DVO & you certainly can't have police drop the charges for breaching, but you can agree to make an application to revoke the DVO in exchange for an undertaking by him that contains the same conditions as the DVO ... If he agrees, make the application. If he then signs the settlement papers, the application to revoke will be decided by a magistrate. If the magistrate agrees to revoke in exchange for an undertaking.... Any subsequent breaking of that undertaking will result in a DVO being placed back on him for a further 5 years minimum.

Now I don't know either of you or the circumstances that lead to the DVO ( There is no need to tell us here BTW)... If he is truly violent then the above may not be an option you want to consider. On the other hand, if he just a bit of a clown & a pest, it may be an option other than court, break the current impasse & save you bleeding more money to a lawyer

Just an idea