Posts Tagged ‘attorney’

As I was looking through my news feed on Facebook today, a video of attorney Gerald Curry popped up.  Many of you probably don’t even know who Gerald Curry was, but he became headline news about 11 years ago when he was chased down and shot by a man who was fighting a court-appointed trustee over money that he claimed the trustee was withholding from his injury settlement trust fund.  Mr. Curry represented the trustee in the litigation.   Mr. Curry survived his injuries and continued to practice until his death in 2012.  The video of this shooting follows.

Violence is not uncommon against attorneys (even their staff), from not only their own clients, but by the opposing party.  As can be gathered from the information regarding Mr. Curry’s shooting, even attorney’s who are not in Family Law can be victims of violence. It amazes me that the American Bar Association has not updated its article done in the mid-90’s, “Lawyers in Harm’s Way.”  This article revealed that 60 percent of family lawyers had been threatened by opposing parties, and 17 percent have been threatened by their own clients.  I believe that these percentages have probably increased since the mid-90’s, given the recent rise in violence in our world.

In June 2013, in California Lawyer magazine, a well written article by Wendy L. Patrick titled “The Dangerous Client,” talks about the increasing violence in our nation and an attorneys ethical duties a lawyer has to their clients and to the public.  For those of you interested, you can read this article here. As we all know, violence in the workplace has increased and it is a concern that I am sure many people have.  I know that I think about this almost everyday as I head off to work, especially working in the Family Law arena.

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If you are in Shasta County and have limited resources to obtain a family law attorney, the Family Law Facilitator’s office has reopened with a new attorney at the helm.

Amplify’d from www.redding.com

Those going through divorces, child-custody disputes or other family law matters again have a free resource inside Shasta County’s courthouse.

Shasta County Court Executive Officer Melissa Fowler-Bradley said that the Family Law Facilitator and Self Help Center program has been reopened in limited capacity since Labor Day.

The office has been closed since Aug. 11 because the attorney running the program was no longer available. Fowler-Bradley has said she retired, but Lizabeth Robison said Friday she’s since found new employment working out of the family law offices of Redding attorney Linda Seinturier.

The facilitator’s office has been in place for more than 10 years, and the self-help center has been in place for about six, Fowler-Bradley said.

The program has helped hundreds of people represent themselves in family law proceedings without having to hire an attorney.

Most attorneys charge upward of $200 an hour for their services.

There were 1,228 divorces filed in Shasta County during the 2008-09 fiscal year. It costs $355 to file a dissolution of marriage petition with the court, even without an attorney.

Without providing legal advice, the court’s program provides educational materials and forms for those wishing to get an uncontested divorce or to modify or set up child-support payments or claims.

Robison said that though she’s now a private attorney who charges for her services, she’s taken in a few of her longtime former clients free of charge.

“There’s just no way they could afford a private attorney,” Robison said.

Read more at www.redding.com

 

Domestic violence is no stranger to any class of people as I have previously stated in this blawg. This month a senior judge in Pennsylvania was charged with choking his wife during an alleged alcohol related incident. C. Joseph Rehkamp, 61, later turned himself in after being charged with domestic violence. A former president judge of Perry County, he is now a senior judge doing much-needed fill-in work in Luzerne County, where the bench has been depleted in a stunning series of corruption scandals.

Initially, he was taken off the Luzerne bench for this week, while administrators considered his future. According to Luzerne County President Judge Thomas Burke Jr. “There’s no question but that we are in dire straits with regard to our staffing of the courts.” Judge Rehkamp has since been removed from hearing cases by the state supreme court’s chief justice while he resolves the domestic violence charge.

A more serious domestic incident in Connecticut earlier this month left a former White House lawyer in jail facing an attempted murder case and his wife, who works for a major law firm, in the hospital after he allegedly beat and choked her.

John Michael Farren, 57, was in jail in lieu of $2 million bail and state attorney disciplinary authorities were seeking to suspend his license to practice law. In Stamford Superior Court last week it was stated that Mr. Farren represents a “substantial threat or irreparable harm to his clients or to his prospective clients,” and the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel is seeking both to lift his license and to have Mr. Farren appoint a trustee to wind up his law practice.

Both of these articles were reported in the ABA Journal this month and are quite disturbing. I will keep a watch on these two cases and report any updates here.