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i am so stressed with my present lawyer pls help

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Arresto Menor
pls i need advice, i am a female and a single mother. hiwalay po ako sa asawa, kinasuhan ko sya ng abandonement and violence against women and their children, after that lumipad na sya papunta ng dubai. last year i decided na magfile ng annulment. so lumapit ako sa isang kakilalang lawyer dahil buo ang tiwala ko sknya, nov 2010 nagbayad na ako ng 50k downpayment at inissuehan naman ako ng resibo, feb 2011 nagbayad nanaman ako ng another 50k dahil kailangan na daw nya bayaran ung psychologist na gagawa din ng statement na isusubmit din sa court. all these time paniwala tlga ako na on going na ang case. come May, nag follow up ako, at dun lang nya sinabi na nun lang daw nag proceed ang process ng hearings ng judge. pero nangako na by dec 2011 or jan 2012 ay tapos na ang annulment ko. august 2011, wala parin daw syang balita sa mga pending case ng judge and will follow up. ngayon pong buwan na to, kinukulit ko na sya na ibigay ang case number ko at hinihingi ko ang pangalan ng judge para kame nalang ng mama ko ang magfollow up. hindi nya masabisabi ang pangalan ng judge, at sinabi lang nya na sa branch 67 daw naka file ang annulment ko. ang dami dami po nyang palusot at dahilan na hindi ko na alam kung totoo o niloloko nya ako. ngayon po ay tinawagan ako at sinabing nagkaproblema daw po ng malaki ang judge pero naging ok na and nangako na by march or april ay ilalabas na ang annulment ko. please advice me po kung ano ba ang mga karapatan ko dito bilang isang client nya. at ano ang magandang gawin sa sitwasyon kong to. maraming salamat po.

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Arresto Mayor
you can ask for the status of your case. Or you can change your lawyer. You can also ask for the return of your payment if he has done nothing and you can file disbarment against him.

Rule 18.04 - A lawyer shall keep the client informed of the status of his case and shall respond within a reasonable time to the client's request for information.

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Arresto Menor
thank you sir. i have texted my lawyer a hundred times yesterday and kept on ignoring me even tho we had an agreement early that morning that she will be sending the case number that night. i kept waiting and got no response. until i finally told her that i would just like a refund of the 100k that i have paid her. after a few minutes she replied saying if i think my case was not filed yet, she told me to go to tarlac branch 67 and look for a certain secretary and ask a copy of my case there. isn't that her responsibility to keep a copy give it to me? this lawyer is very irresponsible. i plan to go to tarlac branch 67 and i will just do the follow up, para po mapabilis na ang kaso ko. i have actually talked to someone who has experienced the same with this lawyer, at ung client nalang daw ang pumupunta sa tarlac para asikasuhin ang annulment nya at sya narin ang nakatapos ng case. with my situation po, i still have a balance of 50k with the lawyer, i have already paid 100k to her. if i am the one who does the follow up in tarlac, at natapos po ang case, am i still obliged to give her the remaining balance kahit na hindi na sya ang umasikaso ng case ko?

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Arresto Menor may check on the said Branch 67, Tarlac, and see if you really have your case there...

...but i also think it would be good if you'd still talk to your lawyer that you needed updates on the status of your annulment case... as far as i know, annulment cases could cost more than a hundred thousand pesos, depending on the grounds... the lawyer the benefit of the doubt, he could probably not tell the name of the judge, since he might have opted to file the case on the court which he's not so acquainted of, on consideration of more probably having a favorable result there (part of the tactics, hope you get what i mean)...

...good lawyer-client relationship is important in your case, if you could still mend a mutual trust then do so, otherwise, you could ask for refund... my only concern is what if the lawyer had already spent the money on filing fees and professional fees on psychiatrist, i doubt if he'd still do the refund, unless there is a court order which, as you've experienced, could very well take a long time...

...practically, i also have doubts if your lawyer could be disbarred simply by violating Rule 18.04 once, he could get reprimanded, maybe, but not disbarred... thereafter, you have a lawyer-enemy...

...wish you all the best anyhow...

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