Need your suggestions in using leverage to collect from attorneys.

Hey, everyone, I need some help and input. I recently completed a 40+ day arbitration, very high profile, nearly 11,000 pages. One of the law firms is claiming that they are not responsible for my final bill and is trying to pass responsibility on to their bankrupt, losing client (losing=they got their butts handed to them by the arbitrators).

Now I find out that this nationally recognized law firm is using my arbitration transcript in an attempt to overturn the decision of the arbitrators in a state court. However, I've got one gotcha left, I hope. I never provided a certified copy, never signed any of the volumes of transcript, only provided electronic, unsigned copies, since it was binding arbitration and the arbitrators did not require a certified transcript.

My question is, Would you contact the state court where they are using my transcript and advise the judge that they (a.) are using an uncertified, unsigned transcript? (b.) they have not paid for the transcript they are using in court?

I am about to begin litigation against these guys but would like to short circuit the process. All suggestions are invited.

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O-M-G. This sounds crazy! I unfortunately don't have any experience to speak about this, but I think I would definately let the court know to see what my options were in that area. I am interested to hear what you do and how it turns out. GOOD LUCK!!!!!!
What state are you in. These attorneys may be violating the law as well as the code of ethics. What is your objective here specifically?
The arbitration took place in the Midwest.

My objectives:

1. Collect funds due, hopefully without filing suit;
2. If I have to file suit, make an example out of these guys by using the legal system.

I'm not to #2 yet, but I am getting very close; probably this week. I don't want to mention their name until suit is filed. Once it's a matter of public record they will start to reap what they've sowed.

This is a very large international firm. I am frankly shocked at their behavior; obviously they've either forgotten or never knew the meaning of the term "officers of the court." Never had this experience in 40 years with lawyers supposedly of their caliber.
send me your phone number to atshemi@aol.com
[[ One of the law firms is claiming that they are not responsible for my final bill and is trying to pass responsibility on to their bankrupt, losing client ]]

If you have this in writing from multiple partners in this firm and are convinced from all this due diligence that that is their final answer, I would next speak to the AAA and/or the arbitrators to get their input and then I think your idea of going to the state court with your gotcha is your only other way of getting paid. And why the hell should you not be paid??! So why the hell NOT use your gotcha!! They're got some nerve. (full disclosure: I have no experience with this type of situation.)
Ahh man, so sorry to hear this Dennis.
I wish we can help you, 11k pages.. thats a nightmare.

We need a black list for attorneys and law firms... now thats a black list I can get behind.
Monti,

Fortunately, I was able to collect for most of the 11k pages; they only owe me for the last seven days of arbitration. Nonetheless, it's a large amount of money; the volume on this job was unbelievable and daily delivery.

I hesitate to start sharing names. Don't want to get sued. After all, litigation costs these clowns next to nothing, even if they lose.

What really burns me is they billed more than $6 million in legal fees on this case. One thing for sure, win or lose, I am suing these guys. Hopefully the newspapers will pick up the story; if they do I will provide the link here.

DAZ
Dennis, when they paid you for the other days, was it a check with their law firm name or a check from their client, that sure wipes out what they said if it was paid with their own company check? It's obvious they don't want to pay for fear of not getting paid by their client.
If it is a well known firm, I bet their bill is being paid by someone - even if they are in bankruptcy.

Since he is using your transcript, and not paying you for the work, I would send a letter to the law firm, send a copy to the judge who is hearing the matter where the transcript is being used, each attorney in the matter, and to that attorney's client - and see if that stirs up a payment.

I would put in the letter, you were hired as a court reporter, the length of time you have been hired, the attorney requested a transcript, has refused to now pay for it saying he is not responsible, and that he is now using the transcript in court proceedings - and you expect to be paid for your transcript by him.
Wow, Dennis. What a crazy situation. I would most definitely contact the court, no doubt about it.

Let us know how it turns out!
Many years ago when I first opened my own business, I sued a firm for not paying their bills and I lost because the law THEN stated that the law firm was acting in the capacity of agent for their client and since the client was known to me, I had the caption, then I was aware of the agent/principal relationship. I consequently lost about 20,000 dollars and the firm went on to thrive to this day and that was about 20 years ago!!! I believe this matter has been litigated in other states and that is why it is important to know what the law is in your state. If they have been paying prior bills with their own checks with the law firm's name on it, then it is an acknowledgement that they are responsible for the bill. If they fail to pay the remainder, tell them you are will call the Grievance Committee of the Bar Association in your state. You do not want these people as clients in the future and it is important to honor your own efforts. Good luck. Anita
Anita, Call me at the cell number I provided you. Dennis

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