Substitution of Attorney Counsel for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy....When, Why & How?
Circumstances arise when there is a breakdown in communication or trust between a client and his or her attorney. In these instances the court allows for a "Substitution of Counsel." This process allows the client to seek another law firm and bankruptcy attorney to takeover their case. We usually encourage people who call who already have representation to try and exhaust all options for repairing their relationship with their current attorney, such as:
- Setting up an appointment to meet with their current attorney to discuss their concerns;
- Requesting a case review or audit of their file so that both parties are on the same page regarding the status and next steps.
If that attempt fails and there has been a material breakdown in the attorney/client relationship, we will meet for a free consultation to discuss the case status and provide a second opinion. So what is the process for having an attorney substitute in a case? Here are the specifics: When? A substitution of counsel can occur any time after a case is filed up until the case is dismissed or discharged. If your case was dismissed and you feel like it was based on your attorney's error, you have an opportunity to petition the court to reinstate your case. Your new attorney could file the petition to reinstate. Why? As previously stated, this process is for when the client feels their case is being mishandled by their current attorney or Michigan bankruptcy law firm and/or there is a breakdown in communication. How? The new attorney or law firm taking over the case would produce a "Stipulation for a Substitution of Counsel" for the client and the previous attorney to sign and return. That document is filed with the court and the process is complete. Based on our high level of professionalism and customer service, we very rarely have clients choose to substitute in to other counsel. Read our client testimonials to get a sense of how our clients feel about our services and staff. If there ever is a discrepancy, our first step is to have a meeting over the phone or in person to discuss a resolution. The owner of the firm, Attorney Bill Johnson, is always available to field client feedback and we have an office cell phone available to clients for emergencies outside of business hours. If you feel you are being improperly represented by your current attorney, we advise you take the resolution steps we listed above. If that effort is unsuccessful in repairing the relationship, we welcome you to call our office. We offer a free consultation to discuss your case status and for you to interview our attorneys to see if Acclaim Legal Services is the right fit for you. We regularly substitute in on cases and are able to quickly get up to speed and take the necessary steps to bring a case back on track.