August 17, 2006

Can We Say: "This Guy Charges Too Much?"

I fucking hate egghead attorneys with fancy offices and egos the size of well... pick something rather large for you to imagine. Ron Jeremy sized or better....

I have a client involved in a minor divorce. Her mother is not well and she asked me to give up all of her claims in an effort to get to another state quickly to help her mother without worrying about this. I advise her she's giving up some very good claims and prepare a decree based on her agreement with the soon to be ex. Time is of the essence so I send it via e-mail to the other attorney. The first decree had a minor typo so I fixed the typo and re-sent it within five minutes of sending the first proposal. Both are 180 degrees different from the proposal we offered last month to which I never receieved a response.

Here's the exchange with actual names changed of course:

Mr. Pighead,

Please find the attached Decree and Consent for your client's signature. It should reflect all of the agreements of our clients. If changes are necessary, please let me know posthaste as my client must leave the jurisdiction in the very immediate future to help care for her terminally ill mother.

If you can please forward the executed documents to me, I will have my client attend the waiver docket with Judge L**** upon the first available day and forward the final order to you.

Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

The Raving Badger

There was minor typo in the Decree so I sent:

Piggy, please find the corrected Decree attached hereto.


Then I get:


As I have told you previously, my client is not going to sign off on a Decree that requires him to pay your client's bills incurred as a result of the Lake Whatchutahatchee accident. In addition, my client is entitled to 1/2 of your client's 401K contributions during the course of their marriage. Our previous settlement offers still stand. I will be serving you in the next day or two with some written discovery. I am going to want to know what kind of 401K contributions your client has made since the date of her marriage to my client, the amount of her medical bills incurred and still outstanding as a result of the accident in question, and other relevant questions.

If your client is willing to pay her own medical bills, we will agree to let her keep all of her 401K contributions. She cannot have her cake and eat it, too.


Note: He's referencing a proposed decree from 8 months ago which is much different that the finished product I sent to him yesterday. If he would have read it, he would have known that. So I reply:


You obviously have not spoken with your client or reviewed the corrected Decree. Please do so before getting haughty with me.

I hope you are not charging your client for wasting my time.


Then I get:

Haughty? I am going to add that word to my computer vocabulary list.

I looked closer at your proposed amended Decree after receiving your vituperative email. It appears to me that you are proposing that your client keep all of her 401K contributions. Your proposed revised Decree does not appear to make any mention of the $800 medical bill in question. However, the Decree does not provide that your client will indemnify and hold my client harmless from payment of your client's medical bills, including the $800 medical bill in question. I want the Decree to be clear that your client is responsible for the payment of her own medical bills and that she agrees to indemnify and hold harmless my client should he someday be required to pay some or all of her medical bills.

The way I read your proposed revised Decree, each party is responsible for paying his/her own taxes during the years of their marriage. This is also something I thought we agreed upon several months ago. The Decree reads that my client shall indemnify your client, but I do not read in the Decree where your client agrees to indemnify my client. We need that language in there.

If I am missing something in the Decree, it is an inadvertent oversight on my part, and I am not trying to waste your time or be haughty. However, in answer to your question, I am charging my client a great deal. I assume the work I am generating for you is also enabling you to pay generous Christmas bonuses to your employees this year.

So I reply:

Mr. Pighead,

My understanding of the agreement is that Plaintiff keeps all of her 401K, and Defendant pays his taxes. Her taxes are paid. He knows this. They have agreed that each pay bills in their own name (i.e. non-marital and marital). She is paying her own medical bills. All marital bills have been previously satisfied. Thus, there is nothing else to pay by either side except your ever increasing bill.

I love your $5 words, but don't try to change the agreement of the parties for purposes of increasing your billing. The proposed decree I have provided you with is fine. You are just trying merely to cover your tracks on not having reviewed it prior to sending me a nasty (and lengthy) e-mail. From your e-mail, it was clear you assumed we were still making the same offer from three weeks ago to which you never responded. I suggest you take fewer vacations and pay more attention as it is obvious you do not know what is going on at all between the parties or in your office.

I hope your client is aware of your mistake and poor attempt to cover for yourself when reviewing your billing. If you have a legitimate addition or deletion, then please feel free to reference it. Otherwise, sign the papers and let us be done with this matter.

Very truly yours,

The Raving Badger

Now, let's get this straight: He's sent 3 e-mails bitching about nothing and all over $800 (at $200 an hour). Boy, I wish my clients were stupid enough to pay me for tilting at windmills.

What a fuckwit.

I bet he voted Republican.


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