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Vancouver Off-Topic / Current Events The off-topic forum for Vancouver, funnies, non-auto centered discussions, WORK SAFE. While the rules are more relaxed here, there are still rules. Please refer to sticky thread in this forum.

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Old 12-03-2012, 05:22 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MindBomber View Post
Many lawyers are good, moral, fair, honest men and women, who have put a great deal of effort into reaching the position they have in life, and who give back to the community that has helped them achieve success.

yup my lawyer unexpectedly gave me a goodwill credit on his fees since he felt like I should have gotten more on this one case he was handling. it was purely because he was a nice guy and felt like it was the right thing for him to do.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:06 PM   #27
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lawyers are not banks/loan sharks. how or why the law society allows this is beyond me, even though it's 18% a year...
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I would assume that the society is okay with allowing lawyers to take out secured loans on clients/peoples homes or else people may have trouble paying for legal services, although I think they should have a policy to govern appropriate interest rates that can be charged.

What about retail establishments that offer their own credit cards? For example, Canadian Tire, the Bay, Zellers, etc. have much worse interest rates, 25-28% if I'm not mistaken.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:14 PM   #28
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My lawyer is the opposite of scum. I guess I got lucky.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:14 PM   #29
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woman logic at work once again
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:28 PM   #30
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Hate to say it but she could have saved so much money if she just had him whacked in the beginning.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:33 PM   #31
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or came to a mutual agreement...

as for the interest rate the highest legal rate allowed is 60% so as mentioned the lawyers rate isn't extreme at most it could be said to be in poor taste
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:46 PM   #32
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as for the interest rate the highest legal rate allowed is 60%
WTF Canada!? That's insane.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:19 PM   #33
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^Do you mean let the interest debt slide or the entire debt?

I do think the lawyer deserves to be paid for his time after spending 9 years on the case (with 3 weeks in trial) and it is important to note that not all lawyers are wealthy as there is a big distinction between elite law and 'regular law'.
i don't disagree with you, he deserves to be paid for his services.. but i've seen lawyers charge/bill for some ridiculous things, like charging overtime for online filings which didn't have to be filed on that day or outside office hours or research done because s/he wasn't familiar with the rules (normally this would constitute as non billable work unless it's a really unique/specific case) keep in mind that they do need to bill minimum hours to cover the overhead costs or to even fathom at becoming a partner of a firm. now the article says the lawyer billed $148.40 to leave a voicemail. so if i did the math correctly, to charge 148.40 (assuming this is before taxes) that voicemail would've taken roughly 0.5 of his 300 hourly rate which translates to 30 mins, a 30 minute voicemail (really?) is kind of excessive to me.

then again it might not all be the lawyer's fault because a bulk of the bill probably comes from the hours spent on reviewing comments and revisions from the other lawyer (who might also be trying to up his/her billable hours and thereby inflating this lady's bill indirectly) =\ it's also not uncommon for lawyers to write off disbursements/courier/photocopy charges or apply a courtesy discount to make a bill look more reasonable. the last thing you wanna do is to send a big bill and piss the client off.

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I would assume that the society is okay with allowing lawyers to take out secured loans on clients/peoples homes or else people may have trouble paying for legal services, although I think they should have a policy to govern appropriate interest rates that can be charged.

What about retail establishments that offer their own credit cards? For example, Canadian Tire, the Bay, Zellers, etc. have much worse interest rates, 25-28% if I'm not mistaken.

i dunno.. imo it seems to complicate the method of payment in the service industry (lawyers provide legal advice as a service) if you allow lawyers to take out secured loans on clients/people's homes. to me hiring a lawyer is a luxury (even though it shouldn't be because an average person would have no means to navigate themselves through the system), if you can't afford to pay for one then don't go to one. this is where i'm also iffy about: "a lawyer may not loan money to a client if the effect of loaning money is to give the lawyer an interest in the matter or impair the lawyer's professional judgment" can it be argued that he has an interest in the matter since he's forcing her into foreclosure? =S hmm...

and i dislike retail cc's.. i sign up for one once in a while to take advantage of the discounts then pay it off and cancel the card =p
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:04 AM   #34
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Guess she should have given him a chunk of the land and ended it peacefully. If the tables were turned she would have expected at least that from him.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:31 AM   #35
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Sucks - But good or bad as this is.

I know some med/big size law firms have mandatory pro-bono work that they must do. (good will basically and to say they aren't scumbags of the earth.)

I think i remmeber talking to one law firm that they have this 1 pro-bono lawyer gets paid exactly like normal lawyer and charges the same. But his clients never gets paid and the law firm eats up all fees associated with his work.

Again...good will...take it for what you want it to be.
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:55 PM   #36
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"If his chest had been a cannon, he's have shot his heart upon it"-Melville.

Describes the dynamic between people in divorce and their lawyers perfectly.
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:00 PM   #37
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WTF Canada!? That's insane.
Actually, it can be worse. My mom lost her wind phone so we went to get her a new one; there's a Wind booth inside the Money Mart not far from me. I didn't take a picture of the notice, but it basically laid out all of the fees and interest rates and levies and all that jazz and put a notice at the bottom informing you of the total APR for a payday loan.


It was something like 600%. I was fucking flabbergasted.
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Old 12-04-2012, 04:28 PM   #38
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There's gotta be something missing from the story.. 10k a year isn't unreasonable for lawyer fees. The real question is why it took 9 years to deal with. It's really her fault for letting the interest accumulate over all that time. I bet her thinking was.. "oh my ex husband is going to have to pay for all this so lets rack up the lawyer fees!!! "

Would it really be such a sad story if it was a credit card company instead of a lawyer taking her house? Obviously not. This is just another case of poor money/asset management.
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:06 PM   #39
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It also seems that when she entered into the lien agreement with her lawyer she stopped having to pay him. So right now, her counsel hasn't been paid for years while still having fixed costs.

However, I think the main point of the article is the unaffordable nature of legal access in Canada for the average person and the ability of an ex who has to pay costs can just get out of his obligations by declaring bankruptcy.
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:28 PM   #40
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As a person who knows nothing of legal fees/wage,
180000k of legal fees (and even a lower principal b/c interest) for a 9 year case sounds kinda like a deal.

from the lawyers pov, he helped this woman for 9 years for free?

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Old 12-04-2012, 06:09 PM   #41
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^The article says she did pay up to a certain point in the "thousands". The other thing is that the trial took 3 weeks. That's easily 3-5k per day and I've been told that's the going rate. If that's the case, it seems he didn't charge her much for preparing the case at all although we don't know what she paid in total before agreeing to put the 100k mortgage on her house. Although why the case took 9 years and the trial had to be 3 weeks is beyond my understanding - that might be more of a systemic issue.

She also chose to go to a downtown law firm.
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Last edited by bing; 12-04-2012 at 06:21 PM.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:35 AM   #42
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One thing that the article kind of glosses over is the fact that it was the Court of Appeal that dismissed Wilson's case. Looking at the history of the case:

Wilson v. Fotsch, 2008 BCSC 548 - CanLII - 2008 BCSC 548 (CanLII) -
Date and Place of Hearing:
October 9-12, 15-18, 29-31, 2007, November 26-28, 30, 2007
and March 4-7, 2008 Vancouver, B.C.

The trial lasted about 16 days (so just over 3 weeks) but the big kicker is that they had to keep stopping and starting again rather than doing a trial straight through.

Result: Ms. Fotsch initially was ordered by the court to pay her husband $99,092, and may have had to pay her husband's legal costs as well.

7.0 Conclusion:

[101] In conclusion, the plaintiff is entitled to an award in the sum of $99,092 as of today’s date. Since I do not have any information concerning whatever offers of settlement may have been exchanged by the parties, I am unable to make an order regarding costs. I leave it to the parties to resolve the matter between themselves, and failing that to contact the Registry to make arrangements to exchange submissions for filing on the issue.

Ms. Fotsch appealed the decision: Wilson v. Fotsch, 2010 BCCA 226 (CanLII) - CanLII - 2010 BCCA 226 (CanLII) . The Court of Appeal reversed the trial judge's decision and dismissed Mr. Wilson's claim.

So that partly explains why it took so long to get a resolution. They actually had a resolution after the 2007/2008 trial, but of course it was not the decision she wanted... so she appealed. I can't speak for what was going through her mind but I would hazard a guess that she knew that she would have to pay more $ to proceed with an appeal. Appeals can be very costly and take up a lot of time, but in the end her lawyer saved her from having to pay $99,092. I don't think that constitutes being 'the scum of the earth'
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