Consumer Assistance is set up to informally mediate attorney and client disputes that involve communication issues between an attorney and a client. Generally speaking, such issues do not arise frequently when there is regular communication between an attorney and a client regarding the status of the legal matter that is the subject of the representation. As any legal matter progresses, circumstances may change, highlighting the need for ongoing effective communication.
Effective communication between the attorney and the client can minimize the opportunity for misunderstandings and miscommunications. Lack of contact on the status of a matter, concerns regarding an apparent lack of action, questions regarding the fee charged and issues related to the client file may be informally addressed by Consumer Assistance. Discussion with the client and brief contact with the attorney frequently resolves these concerns. Informal mediation by Consumer Assistance is conducted discreetly between the parties, but is not subject to the full confidentiality provided by Supreme Court Rule 3.150.
Consumer Assistance is not intended to provide a second opinion on advice received from the attorney. Consequently, while Consumer Assistance may provide general information or direct a caller to other potentially helpful resources, no legal advice is provided.
Circumstances suited to informal mediation by Consumer Assistance are distinct from situations which appear to present issues of attorney misconduct or violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct. The decision as to whether a formal complaint should be filed based on the facts and circumstances present rests exclusively with the client.
For information contact:
Phone: (502) 564-3795, ext. 297