View Full Version : what to do?

05-22-2009, 04:34 PM
How do you find a GOOD lawyer? Separated since Aug 2003 and not happy with lawyer #3.

When I left husband he agreed that we would work out our own separation terms to mitigate reliance on lawyers and court system. I was willing to write up the papers. He chose to not participate in this process.

I then purposely waited an extended period of time before retaining legal representation (we lived in Sudbury and I moved back home to Kitchener with the kids) because I wanted legal proceedings to occur in the Kitchener system.

My 1st lawyer was a collaborative lawyer... again in effort to mitigate reliance on the courts and again he chose not to participate.

My 2nd lawyer was on a positive referral from a friend. I was disgusted at his services... tried to bill me for services not rendered and threatened me with court action when I refused to pay (without admiting wrong-doing he later decided not to pursue me).

My 3rd lawyer was found from the yellow pages. I later discovered she represented the father of my sons friend and he was happy with her. She's been retained by me for a number of years now and the only thing I have accomplished is guideline child support, spousal, and interm physical custody of my children... that is it.

I am not happy!! I am faced with resistance every time I bring up my issues. Some of them being: I want full legal custody of our kids (she thinks what I have is fine), back support (I received absolutely nothing for the first 15 months), contributions towards daycare (I've even had to pay out-of-pocket while he was fully subsidized because the ex's failure to produce mortgage statement on our house.. papers the bank would only release to him),contributions towards extra medical/therapuetic expenses related to our special needs child, etc...

This is a guy (my ex) who tried to sell our matrimonial house without my knowledge... I found out a seller had been found accidently when his realstate agent called me in error/ Then he declared bankruptcy. This is just a small highlight of "stuff"...

Also, I want a formal visitation schedule put in place with the children. He sees the maybe 3 times a year and will cancel at a whim, stating its my problem to deal with... if I had made plans, and leaves it to me and explain his inability not to see the kids or will give them an absolutely ridiculous excuse.

More recently there has been issues with his commonlaw gf and her mother. I have been physically threatened by the mother and agressively told never to phone the residence by the gf.. each instance infront of my kids. The ex was a witness to the verbal attack from the gf and claims that the incident with the mil never happened. I live in Kitchener... I don't frequent their home, never met the mil and seen the gf once... they've been together four at least 4yrs, don't even know because she was kept a secret, and I only will call to talk with the kids when they are there... I don't call him... all my correspondence is done thru email (time stamped documentation). In the rare event that I do need to talk on the phone I now have a telephone conversation recorded.

My layer tells me that there is nothing I can do because "there are no visitation police"... her exact words. I do not want my kids exposed to that environment or this sort of person (gf and her mother) ever again and have told the ex this. I don't care what he does but when it directly affect my kids in a negative way, then I do have a say in that particular context. After the latest blow-up there was an agreement between the ex and I that the kids would be kept away from the house and the gf. This worked well for the March Break visitation (only the last weekend of it this year) but now he claims it was only under duress that he agreed to this and says that the kids will be with him at the gf's house form now on.

My lawyer offers no support for any of these or other issues!

Trust me, there are lots of details and sidelines to my story but this is the main idea. I don't know what to do.

05-22-2009, 05:00 PM
Man, I'm so sorry to hear you have to deal with this. I know where you're coming from!

have you tried Glenda Mcleod (Miller, Caron, McLeod & Priestley - Lawyers Practising in Association, (519) 745-1912)? She offers a free 1/2 hour consultation. I went to see her just recently and found her to be pretty good (from first impression). I had a consult with her and haven't needed her services as of yet, but if I need a lawyer, I would definitely go back to her. She's on Duke Street in Kitchener.

Good luck to you and hopefully you find a lawyer who will help you through this and get you what you need!

05-22-2009, 06:08 PM
I have a friend who works for lawyers, i have contacted her to find out if they do family law. my sister has had the hardest time finding a decent lawyer, so i understand your plight.

05-22-2009, 06:26 PM
ok here is the name of the lawyersPaquette Travers and DeutschmannI know that she has always raved about them

05-22-2009, 06:40 PM
I went with Kelly Hooper she actually wanted me to go for more than I did. She's really good
is the # in the yellow pages-she is a little costly, but well worth it

05-22-2009, 10:42 PM
If I were you, I would have another chat with the lawyer you are using, sit down, ask her to discuss each issue with you, and let her know you might be looking elsewhere - It might be that you are just not getting an adequate explanation of what she thinks.
For her part, it is possible that she is trying to keep your costs down - you can pursue many of the things you are talking about, but will likely not have the results you are looking for, and, as you know, it is not cheap.
Retroactive support, from such a long time ago if never requested or ordered before, is something I doubt you will get, and you could very well open up the issue of spousal support as well
Are the extraordinary expenses worth the expense you will incur legally?
Is having an order for permanent full custody going to change anything? Probably not - you, in effect, already have this

What is a "formal visitation schedule" going to accomplish? You are already providing access, which he choses to excercise at his will - is that likely to change?

Amd with respect to his GF - your current lawyer is right - there is no visitation policed. What he chooses to do, during his access time, and with whom, is up to him. You, unfortunately have no say. Unless they are in direct physical harm (and even that is iffy :( )

Just my 0.02 - It would be horrible to go through the expense of what you want, and end up disappointed

05-23-2009, 01:31 AM
Lawyers have a better knowledge of the system and even if it seems unfair they generally know if our needs, wants, requests are reasonable and will fly with a judge etc.

I would have a heart to heart with your current one and explain that you aren't happy with the service that you are receiving and discuss the issues and find out her take on the situation.

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