More goings on

An update at a reader's request. There is a certain law firm in town that is very well-known. It advertises quite a lot. There have been goings on at the 4th Appellate Division in Rochester, which has jurisdiction over lawyer discipline in Buffalo. Apparently, on any given imminent Friday afternoon, the 4th AD will be leveling some pretty harsh sanctions against the firm and/or one and/or both of its named shareholders. From rumblings I've heard, it ain't pretty. If you have a case with a lawyer and you win, and the lawyer farms the appellate work to another firm and tries to bill you for that work at the outside firm's hourly rate, and calls it an "expense disbursement", that's a no-no. If you have a case with a lawyer and you're offered a loan against your possible future settlement/judgment, that's shady to begin with. If it's with one of the lawyer's family members, that's even shadier. If the interest rate is in usury territory (let's say, anything over 20% per year), that's a big no-no. If you're a lawyer who is being investigated for these types of things, and you know that you've been found, or are about to be found, liable for them all, and you don't even bother to update the other lawyers in your firm about it, you're into schmuck territory. The weird thing is that, when this news is revealed, there won't be a wet eye in the house. The question will be whether all of the firm's fee agreements are null and void, and whether it'll be a feeding frenzy from the other firms in town to pick up the newly free-agented work. The firm also happens to employ some pretty nice people as lawyers, and one wonders how they feel about it all. It ain't gonna be pretty. March 18th is (supposedly) D-Day.

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