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San Antonio, TX asked in Estate Planning for Texas

Q: My wife is unhappy with her lawyer but he will receive her estate check. How do we refute service.

My wife has no wish to speak with the family of the the estate for her inheritance so we hired a lawyer to intermediate and verify paperwork. We eventually got a military id and sent that to our lawyer with her Social Security Card and Birth Certificate. The family still wanted to video chat for identity purposes and our lawyer pressed us for it despite our issues with it on the basis the credentials provided were sufficient for identification. Our lawyer went as far as to say life isnt always fair and he could refer to someone if we didnt want to. I feel this is wrong for someone we are paying for. It turned out the family lawyer failed to hand the credentials to the family so they fired him and are dealing directly with our lawyer and are conceding on identification but we feel our lawyer's performance was lacking and he wants to charge us more and we dont know what he has done. Furthermore the estate check is going to him first, payable to my wife but has to be released.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kathy Elizabeth Roux
Kathy Elizabeth Roux
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Grapevine, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: If the family lawyer was representing your family at the time of the meeting, then your lawyer was ethically required to communicate with the family lawyer, and not the family about the credentials. If your lawyer gave your credentials to the family lawyer, then it sounds like he did what he was supposed to do, and the fault lies with the family lawyer for not giving the credentials to the family.

If you feel your lawyer's performance is lacking, you may want to first meet with your lawyer and express your concerns about his performance. It may be best to meet with you lawyer as soon as possible so that you can resolve any misunderstandings and get your questions answered before moving forward with your case and before your discontent increases. It will help you if you write down all of your questions and concerns before your meeting. You may request an itemization of the services that your lawyer has performed, and the expenses incurred on your behalf for you to review prior to your meeting. You may also request an estimate from your lawyer of the services he anticipates you will need, and the cost for such services.

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