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Conduct of Barristers and Solicitors

Watts J has set down a hearing on 4 July 2008 to hear submissions in respect of conduct

http://www.familycourt...40eb00/2008_FamCA_351.pdfhttp://www.familycourt.gov.au/presence/resources/file/eb000702240eb00/2008_FamCA_351.pdf

Watts J. said
100. There will be a further listing before me on 4 July 2008 at 10am for the purposes of giving David Baran, Stephen Gardiner, Megan Dorrough and Peter Smart an opportunity to make submissions as to why I shouldn't send my findings to the Office of the Legal Services Commissioner for consideration as to whether or not disciplinary action should be taken against them.

This matter is likely to involve around 6 million dollars in legal fees. It would indeed be unfortunate if the legalites were excluded from the action.On reading  paragraph 100 in the judgememt it suggests that the husbands legal team in the case are in very hot water. They may be regarded in being complicit in a contempt of court. The husband currently is looking at six months for contempt. It is possible he will waste more of his millions before accepting the authority of the court. Final hearing in this case is set down for five weeks.

What happens if the practitioner is likely to be found guilty by the Tribunal of UPC or PM?

At the conclusion of the hearing, the Tribunal may make a variety of orders. Such orders include:
removal of the practitioner's name from the roll of legal practitioners, if the practitioner is guilty of professional misconduct;

  • cancellation of the practitioner's practising certificate;
  • a fine of up to $75,000 if the practitioner is guilty of professional misconduct;
  • a fine of up to $10,000 if the practitioner is guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct;
  • a public reprimand to the practitioner or, if there are special circumstances, a private reprimand; and
  • an order that the practitioner undertakes a course of further legal education.
The attached document, titled Looking Behind Client Instructions - Steve Mark of 2001 makes interesting reading. (Paragraphs on Criminal Law have been deleted). Being aware of the grounds upon which complaints can be lodged are of value when opposed by a barrister who is bound by ethics, supposedly?

Attachment
Looking Behind Client Instructions - Steve Mark

Should one consider using a legal representative in an unbundled, direct brief, or in a conventional mode the following aspects are worthy of consideration:

In picking a lawyer, you must begin by eliminating obvious non-starters, sorting through the rest using your common sense, intuition and judgment. If finally the lawyer seems like he/she is someone you can trust and work with, you have made a good choice. So do not take impulsive decisions while hiring a lawyer. You should take basic necessary precautions to compose a hassle free purchase. Following are the tips that will come in handy:







  • Make a list of the lawyers who may be right for the job.
    Contact them by e-mail or fax with a written list of questions and briefly outline your case.
  • Ask each lawyer for specific answers to your questions
    You may put forth loaded questions to the lawyer whose answers will help you weed out some lawyers. Lawyers may appreciate this approach as it saves both you and them from wasted time and effort.
  • Shortlist lawyers on answers you get from references
    You can go to see each of the lawyers personally and ask them for relevant references. You can check the references out. See if they were happy with the work of the lawyer and whether they would hire that lawyer again when needed.
  • Do your homework
    Bring all available documentation and make required notes before meeting with your prospective lawyer for the first time. This will help you present your problem in the clearest and most organized manner possible, and assess your lawyer's response to your case and questions.
  • Give good and sensible reasons for what you want to do
    Let the lawyer know what your case is about, and the results you expect. Evaluate his/her experience and skill to handle your case. See whether you understand his/her explanation of what the case involves.
  • Get a feel for professional chemistry
    Since you are going to be working together on a crucial matter, you should also gauge what kind of comfort level you will have.
  • Changing lawyers should be avoided at all costs
    It will probably be your last resort. To avoid this you should choose the right lawyer in the first place.
  • Know the payment terms
    If you have finally chosen a lawyer to represent you, you can work out a payment plan based on the progress of the file. Ask yourself whether the fee arrangements seem reasonable.
  • Letter of Agreement
    If you draw up a Letter of Agreement, it should outline the work and results you expect as well as cost and payment terms of the lawyer. If your lawyer presents you with a contract he/she should explain to you the terms and conditions of the document. Read and understand the document before you think about signing it.
  • Do not finalize the lawyer retention in first meeting itself
    Take your time and dwell over it before you zero in on any particular lawyer.
  • Be willing to make an upfront deposit if asked
    You might have to pay a retainer or an advance to the lawyer if he or she asks before moving forward with your case.

Last edit: by verdad


What is done for you, let it be done, what you must do, be sure you do it, as the wise person does today that what the fool will do in three days - Buddha
Hey verdad just to draw your attention that your post may not have come out as you expected a re-post would be great

cheers D4E  :thumbs:

Interesting Reading

The document ceratinly makes interesting reading - Should be compulsory reading for solicitors (and barristers)

The sad thing is that while solicitor have a code of ethics - some don't follow them - And recourse is left to the adult party damaged by the solicors behaviour. The children dopn't often get a say in it at all.

For me - Shared Parenting is a Reality - Maybe it can be for you too!
The percentage of solicitors that fall into the category of predators is increasingly becoming more evident, i see this week in week out while attending DiDS, as an observer in courts and in my relationship with past lawyers.

In this case it sounds like the legal team is culpable.

There is also a fine line in believing what your client tells you and the reality of the situation. Our ex's solicitor did this and received some nasty shocks at final hearing.

You should never try to defend someone's actions when they are wrong. In the documentation above, the counsel trying to say that the father's turn of phrase in apology was unintended…was just silly.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
 
And recourse is left to the adult party damaged by the solicors behaviour
. i wrote to the ombudsman, and the bar association about a barrister i once had, he has since been dis-barred and is no longer working..

There should be a registry shaming practitioners such as mine where one can view!

Good for you, Monaro.

I'm a firm believer in writing to complain. If your particular letter is not acted on, the next person's carries more weight.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
Don't tar them all with the same brush. some are genuinely interested in helping, often on a pro-bono or legal aid basis or even anonomously in pubilic forums

Law Society Talk

Testing-one-two said
Don't tar them all with the same brush. some are genuinely interested in helping, often on a pro-bono or legal aid basis or even anonomously in pubilic forums
 
See you at the next conference. Do you stay around for the talk on legal ethics?

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on the site (Look for the Avatars).   Be mindful what you post in the public areas. 
monaro said
There should be a registry shaming practitioners such as mine where one can view!
I have searched for such a registry. It appears to be password protected. Surely this is public knowledge?

How does one know if one's advocate has been warned or fined previously?

What is done for you, let it be done, what you must do, be sure you do it, as the wise person does today that what the fool will do in three days - Buddha
I have seen a list for Queensland practitioners where they have been disciplined. Let me see if I can locate it again.

shame file

ooh ... now i would like to see that
Well, it's not on the law society site.

I had a gander and can't see anything.

Perhaps it was in a judgement?

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
No it's a list of solicitors who have been either struck off or reprimanded in Queensland. It goes back quite a few years and gives some details of the cases. I can't for the life of me remember where it was.

solicitors

just a suggestion ... i think i saw something like this on the legal services commission of qld at one stage
Yes…found it..
ERROR: A link was posted here (url) but it appears to be a broken link.
http://www.lsc.qld.gov.au/EntireDisciplineRegister.asp
And in nsw
ERROR: A link was posted here (url) but it appears to be a broken link.
http://www.lawlink.nsw.gov.au/olsc/nswdr.nsf/BuildComplaintListAlpha?OpenAgent
How pleasing it is to see how a group of researchers can fossick out the secrets of the legal industry.
It is quite posible that these findings once published occupy a place on the shelves of the law libraries in our libraries.

When "New South Wales Bar Association" is entered on AusLII there are many returns that suggest there are more than imagined errant solicitors and barristers who actually get sprung.

This gives good cause to keep the @#$%^(&* honest and report those who are willing to stoop to unethical behaviour.

Last edit: by verdad


What is done for you, let it be done, what you must do, be sure you do it, as the wise person does today that what the fool will do in three days - Buddha
Interesting the law society link to the LSC does not work.

Good job guys!

It's shocking to see how many there are!

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
We have recently discovered that during our FC case in 2005 the PA of our lawyer happened to have a daughter that lived next to the child's mother….

The mothers side always seemed to be 1 step in front of us at all times. Maybe I am just being paranoid.
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