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Hardeep (Business)     04 February 2011

BAD Counsel - what to do ?

Hi all respected lawyers seeing this ,

It is indeed a pity but I am faced with a situation where my "Counsel" whom I trusted completely hid facts from me and did not come on critical times during court hearings. This has caused me loss and hardships as udner.

During one hearing I was busy and reminded him at about 11 AM to ask if he was in Court -  it seems he had also not gone to the Court that day and after getting my call hurriedly arranged a"Proxy Counsel "who -per him ( as he explained later to me )  could not tell the Judge the facts of the case properly. Due which I the plaintiff  was put a cost of Rs. 5,000 by the  Judge !!

My Lawyer drafted an application for waiver of cost ( did not show me the Contents  - just said cost has been put since I the plaintiff was absent but he has already filed an application... ) .

But  the day it was to be discussed did not show up when my case was called ( although he was there minutes before but the Judge came late... ) . Although I requested the Judge to give me time to call my lawyer he refused and said case will be dismissed unless I pay up there and then. Which I did ( Rs. 5,000 / = for a dispute of  only Rs. 12,000 approx ! ) My lawyer later said I should not have done so and we filed an Application for Review of order after more than 50 days ( My lawyer never told me about the limitation period )..

Since then my  Lawyer has not turned up for any further hearings inspite of my practically begging him  and finally I have e-mailed him withdrawing Authority to represent me.

My Lawyer has already been paid in full by me. This is a dispute where  I know I am correct and the Opposite Party has not paid up even though we have fulfilled our Services obligations as set out in our Terms sent out to the Opposite Party before we started work.

I recently got the whole file copied from the Court Records and find that from the first hearing itself the  lawyer has been acting incompetently - to the  extent that even the papers filed by him in court were not in order and had one page missing !!

In the first hearing itself the Court had said that OP be supplied with a "fresh and proper copy of the plaint " which my lawyer never did, neither did he tell me anything about it !.

I am wondering what  to do. And should such lawyers be practicing to begin with? And  what are the recourses I now have ?

I’ll be grateful for all inputs. I am in Delhi


thank you

hardeep

 

 

 

 

 



 17 Replies

padhma (advocate)     05 February 2011

u have right to change the advocate, and also u can file complient for misrepresentation and deficit services in consumer forum as well as bar councel of delhi

1 Like

valentine thakkar (advocate)     05 February 2011

It is the duly of every litigant to check the record of the lawyer and they should not go simply by their length in the legal field. Many times that yardstick proves illusory. Many times the freshers or the less experienced are better lawyer because they work hard to get established.

1 Like

Hardeep (Business)     05 February 2011

@ Padhma : Thank you for your suggestion. Can I file a case in the Consumer Forum ?  I thought that was for individual consumers only , while in this specific case I am representing my Company who had hired this lawyer ( we are a small partnership and the hiring was done by me only, based upon some recommendatinos from "friends" who later professed helplessness )

@valentine : Is there a way a litigant can check the record of a lawyer ? Such information could indeed be useful. Please advise.

 

padhma (advocate)     05 February 2011

u can take ur record at any time any stage of case, absolutely u can file complaint in consumer forum with proffs defnitely they can give u relief. but u have to file the all copies and u have to explain in writtenstatement about the stages of case, and how he mirepresented.

1 Like

(Guest)

IT IS ADVISIBLE TO KINDLY FILE REVIEW OF THE SAID ORDER OF COST.THERE IS A LEGAL REMEDY AVAILABLE FOR YOU.YOU MAY MENTION ALL FACTS AND YOU WILL SUCCEED. YOU HAVE TO DEFEND YOUR CASE AGAINST YOUR OPPOSITE PARTY.KINDLY DO NOT GET INVOLVED IN TO UNNECESSARY LEGAL BATTLES.YOU MAY BE REQUIRED TO MOVE FROM ONE COURT TO ANOTHER.IT IS ADVISIBLE TO DISCUSS THE MATTER WITH CONCERNED AND SETTLE THE SAME MUTUALLY.GOOD LUCK.

1 Like

valentine thakkar (advocate)     05 February 2011

Dear

Don't pick a fight with the lawyer. Forget and forgive. However, you may raise a mercy application narrating how you were misguided and how the matter had gone beyond your reach. Before that you will have to prove yr case against the opponent. If U r capable U can fight on your own as party in person but that's risky. Contact the Bar Association, President, and work out the things. 

Yes, u can move complaint in the consumer forum. Advocates have to proivide service to their clients and hence they come under the jurisdiction of the Consumer Forums and Commissions. U can file a complaint on the ground of deficiency of service. But do u think it would be wise to do it? It is left to u. Sorry, you had to bear the loss.

1 Like

subbareddy (advocate)     06 February 2011

Don't forget even for the said proceedings also you have to entertain cousel, if you are able yourself, no second thought, take appropriate action.
1 Like

Hardeep (Business)     06 February 2011

Thanks for everyone's advise. Well the facts - as are now clear from the Case File of which now ( copied on 19th January 2011 ) I have certified copies from the Court  - are as under.

( THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE IN READING THIS LONG MESSAGE.  BUT I THINK IT IS IMPORTANT – NOT ONLY FOR LAWYERS BUT EVEN ALL OTHERS WHO MAY READ THIS – AS TO HOW  A BAD LAWYER  AND YOUR TRUST IN HIM CAN SPOIL YOUR CASE ! )

a) In the FIRST hearing  on 4th May 2009  ( I was not in court on that day since my lawyer told me not needed ),  My Counsel had sent in a "Proxy "and the Court Notes of the day state :

"Ld Counsel for Def states copies of documents not furnished. Be furnished in the course of the day. WS to be filed on record within prescribed period of limitation . To come up for 27/7/2009."

My Counsel NEVER told me above. He simply said the OP Lawyer was told to file a reply by next date.

Later, he told me one page of our plaint was not filed with the Court and we have to make a new plaint. I never realized how serious was this matter. In the Plaint Copy he had given earlier to me all pages were correct and in order..

Actually what had happened was that  my Counsel had omitted  Page No. 6 of the plaint  in the Plaint given to Court and put Page No. 5  twice by mistake.  Page No. 6 just says that the jurisdiction is Delhi as printed on our Invoice and then adds the legal and prayer clause.

Anyway we made an Application U/O VI, Rule 17 read with Section 151 CPC on  24th July 2009 pointing out above and making an amended plaint.

b) On 27/7/2009 me and my counsel were both in the Court . OP Counsel was not there and the Ld Judge ruled :

" Pt in Person with Counsel. None has appeared for Defendant. WS also not placed on record despite specific directions. Prescribed period  of limitation for filing Defence has already expired. Defense of Defendant stands struck off. Put up for evidence of Plaintiff on 29/9/2009 "

My counsel then told me the case is almost won, just send me the E-mails etc. between you and client ( of which I had already forwarded on mail copies to him ) and in the next hearing case will be decided. He also asked for his balance money which I sent him ( by Cheque ) some 15 days later. So he was paid in FULL.

c) On 29th Sept. 2009 I and my Counsel were both present in Court but the Ld Judge was on leave. We got another date of 3rd Dec. 2009 and then went left.

( I have got all the Court File papers Copied on 19th Jan. 2011. They tell me that the OP Lawyer inspected the Case File on 13th August. .

Then , on  29th Sept. 2009, AFTER we had left, he filed an application on behalf of the Defendant for setting aside ex-parte proceedings. This application says that on 4th May 2009 itself he had pointed out in the Cout that the papers in the plaint supplied to the Defendant were not in proper working order. The maintainability of the case was also discussed. The Court was pleased to order the Plaintiff’s counsel to supply a fresh copy of the plaint and then  the Defendant to file their Written Statement within the due course of time .

But he is YET to receive the Plaint Copy - although he has visited the Counsel for Defendant in his chambers for the same thrice but the Counsel  of Plaintiff has postponed the matter on one false pretext or the other and has not supplied the Copy of the Plaint with annexure/ documents.

So the Court should SET ASIDE  the Exparte Order passed on the Last Date of Hearing and ask the Counsel for the Plaintiff why he has not supplied the complete set as per undertaking given on 4th May 2009 and then give fair opportunity to Defendant to file their WS )

My Counsel NEVER told all above in detail. Much later , only on 5th July 2010 he made a passing reference that the OP has put in an application for setting aside the exparte order but any case he has put a reply to that !!

d) On 3rd Dec. 2009 I could not come to the Court . I had told my Counsel in advance . The Df Counsel was present that day and the  Court Notes say that  the Copy of Df’s application dated 29th Sept. 2010 was given to my Counsel that day. The case was “Put up for reply and arguments on 15 Feb. 2010. Defendant is also to appear in person”.

My Counsel did NOT tell me that such an application has been filed by the Defendant. He just told me we have a new date for 15th Feb. 2010 !!

e) On 15th Feb. 2010 I had a sudden work and I recalled about this date only about 11 AM. I  immediately called my Counsel and he said “Oh, you are also not there ! Let me look into it ”

The Court Record for that date shows :

“ Counsel for Defendant present. Plaintiff is absent since morning despite repeated calls. No reply filed to the application of the Defendants. At this stage , proxy counsel appeared on behalf of plaintiff company and seeks adjournment. An application is moved. Adjournment is vehemently objected by the Counsel for Defendant. Heard. The matter stands adjourned for appearance of plaintiff and for filing reply to the application of defendant, subject to cost of Rs. 5,000/=. Put up for 5th July 2010 “

In the afternoon when I checked with my Counsel all he said was that “since I ( the plaintiff ) was not present, Court has put some cost. He will check the details and revert”. He never called back ( in any case, all through it had been me only running after him ). When I called him again, he said a cost of Rs. 5,000/= has been put since I the plaintiff was absent but he ( my Counsel ) will look into it and file an application but I should be present in Court on 5th July 2010.

 

f) On 5th July 2010 I reached Court. My Counsel came late ( he NEVER came on time !! ) , The Ld Judge was not there and after some time my Counsel left saying that he is in the Court Premises itself and I should call him as soon as the Judge comes. When the Judge came I frantically called my  Counsel. He would not pick up the his Cell Phone. I sent him an SMS. Meanwhile my case was called and the OP Lawyer was there.

I told the Ld Judge to please give me some time so that I can call my Lawyer who is in the Court premises itself. But she did not listen to me and just kept the file to one side and said unless the fine was paid up the case would be dismissed there and then. Having no idea what to do, I paid up the fine in front of the Judge to the OP’s lawyer.

I also met the OP lawyer outside the Courtroom that day and he bluntly told me I have a bad counsel. He  also suggested we should “compromise” the case rather than get into all this and I took his Cell Phone number for the same, if need be.

After some time my lawyer came and told me I should not have given the money !!!

The Court Notes for 5th July 2010 say :

“ Present AR for plaintiff. Counsel for Defendant. In between an application dated 12/3/2010 filed for waiver of costs. Vehemently opposed by the Counsel for Defendant. Heard. AR seeks withdrawal of his application. On his request application stands disposed of as having withdrawn . Previous cost paid. On his request put up for arguments on application of Defendant on 17th Sept. 2010. ”

( I NEVER asked for a withdrawal of application – I had not even seen it till that time and did not know what it contained !!  The Ld Judge said my case will be dismissed unless I paid up , which is what I did !! )

As I know from the Court files NOW ( after I got the whole file copied on 19th Jan. 2011 )  , indeed on 12/3/2010 my Counsel had filed  an application under 151 CPC for waiver of Cost in which essentially he says

-         On 15/2/2010 Pt’s Counsel could not attend since be was busy in some other case. He instructed his colleague on phone to apprise the Hon’ble Court  that “as per records , the defendant was never proceeded exparte and on the contrary his defence was struck off vide order dated 27th July 2009 and no reply is required to be filed .The said colleague was further advised by the Pt Counsel that in order to avoid any delay in the matter the Hon’ble Court may dispose of the application as it thinks fit”.

-         But the Colleague who was new to practice could not describe the factual position and merely sought for adjournment.

-         On which the Court adjourned subject to payment of cost of Rs. 5,000.

-         It was further submitted that in absence of reply by the Pt, at most Df application   ought to have been allowed instead of imposing cost of Rs. 5000 on Pt without his fault especially when the suit is only for recovery of Rs. 11,292/=.

-         It  was stated that the Df’s application as framed was not sustainable since no order proceeding exparte was ever passed and on the contrary the Defence of the Df was struck off on 27th July 2009 which was never challenged or sought to be recalled. It was obligatory on Df’s part to file Written Statement along with an application for recalling of order dated 27th July 2009 along with further application for condonation of delay in filing the Written Statement.

Now my Counsel said we will have to make ANOTHER application for  Review and Recall of Order dated 5th July 2010. I kept after him for the same and finally on 1st Sep. 2010 he made an application to which both he and I signed.

 

g) On 17th Sept. 2010 the case was transferred to new Judge at Saket New Delhi premises.  I reminded my Counsel several times to come on time. But when my case was called he was not present !! Even the Defendant Counsel was not present. The Court took on record our Application of 1st Sept. 2010 and said “AR of the plaintiff is directed to supply copy of the same to Defendant so that reply can be filed by the Defendant. Matter be put up for appearance of Defendant, reply and arguments on application of plaintiff for recalling the order dated 5th July 2010 and arguments on application moved on behalf of the defendant, on 13 Dec. 2010 “.

 

As soon as I came out of the Court Room I saw my Counsel coming. He asked me what happened and I explained best I could. He said he will deliver the copy of our Application of 1st Sept. 2010 to the Defendant Counsel since that is his job.

 

h) On 13th December he again promised me he will come on time to the Court but when my case was called he was not there !! The Defense Counsel was there and I was SHOCKED to learn from him that he has YET to receive our Application of 1st Sept. 2010 ! The Judge asked me about it and I said my Counsel was supposed to do it ! The Court asked me to if I had a copy of the same – which I had at the time – and told me to give it here and then to the Defense Counsel..  the Df Counsel sought time and court  gave him  14 days and said also to give advance copy to the plaintiff against proper receipt. Case put for  reply and argument on application for review and recall moved by plaintiff on 5th Feb. 2011.

 

My Counsel had still not reached the Court . When I called him again he asked me what  happened !!  I asked him why he did not deliver the Copy of our Application to the Defence Counsel. He simply cut the phone !! Then he won’t lift it for the next 15-20 minutes, neither did he reach the Court. After 20 minutes when he lifted his Cellphone again I said I want my file back. He said “come tomorrow at 10 AM to my office and take it “ and cut the phone !!!

 

That was the last time I spoke to him.  On 14th December 2010 I sent him an E-mail withdrawing our Authorization and summarizing all his conduct. Till date, that E-mail is not answered.

 

Meanwhile  I reminded the Df Counsel ( as I had his Cellphone number ) and he gave me the Copy of his reply on 5th Jan. 2011 in which he made the following points :

- Our Review Application for recalling the Order dated 5th July 2010 has been filed onr 1st Sept. 2010 which is beyond the limitation period and so not tenable.

- So far the Copy of the Plaint asked for by the Defense Counsel in the FIRST hearing on 4th May 2009 is YET to be supplied to him. The plaintiff can not be allowed to take advantage of his own wrongs.

- The AR of the plaintiff had admitted his mistake and paid up Rs. 5,000 on 5th July 2010.

- The Conduct of the Counsel of Plaintiff was not good since the beginning of the Case

Also, again he told me it’d be better for me to Compromise the case. He said best he can get me is the disputed amount which is Rs. 11,292/=

I decided to take matters in my own hand and on 21st January got all the Case File papers copied from which I have summarized all above.

I realized all the mistakes my counsel had done when I read the file in detail after 19th January 2011. Some others also, whose opinion I value highly  told me I should compromise. So I told the Df Lawyer accordingly.

I ) On 5th Feb. 2011, in front  of the Judge I agreed to a COMPROMISE and the Df lawyer has given me a cheque for  Rs. 11,292/=

 

So, this case is CLOSED.

 

BUT my questions STILL are :

 

a) Is such conduct expected from lawyers and should one just accept it ?

b) Does the lawyer community condone such conduct ? If not what recourse I have, besides getting into another legal battle with a lawyer ?

c) No one wants to get involved into legal battles, more so against lawyers ! But does that mean the lawyers can act with impunity and misinform / misguide their clients and should get away with it ?

d) What did I do wrong ? Is there anyway I could have prevented it  AFTER I had hired a lawyer and was trusting him ?

I request all lawyers – whatever their seniority  – to read above and ponder over it. For a few bad apples the whole community becomes suspect ! I think the Community needs to put in the strongest possible safeguards to ensure frauds and incompetents calling themselves lawyers do not get into this practice.

THANK YOU  FOR READING THROUGH THIS LONG MESSAGE !!

sanjeev kumar (cleark)     06 February 2011

Hi Hardeep

I am also a plaintiff in one case and my first lawyer was not good man and lawyers. Than I changed my lawyer and I have to pay full fee again and till now in last seven years there are around 50 dates. I took leave on each date and attend my case but my patience is also running out. What I feel that lawyers charges for dates not to fight the case. Any way since your case resolved, please let it go and live peacefully.

 

   

1 Like

Hardeep (Business)     08 February 2011

Hi Sanjeev

Thanks much for reading through and responding !

Yes indeed it is apparent that the Indian Legal System has become self-serving - it is in the interetst of all - except the innocent / suffering party that the process is protracted as much as possible. Rather than the innocent, it is the guilty parties who seem to be thriving !

Perhaps it is time that the System also is paid on a performance basis - as is the case in Europe/ US  where lawyers can legally charge a "success" fee. That may encourage the best of the breed to come out publicly while weeding out the incompetent.

In the higher legal cricles, I hear, such thoughts are already arising. When they crystallise is dificult to say but at the very top some changes are happening as we can see with the recent ( supposed ) fall of the  political"high and mighty ".


I am still awaiting the answers of some lawyers to the questions I had raised. I request them to respond in the spiirt of having a mature discussion aimiing at improving whatever the lacunas the System - or the people in it - may have.

Hardeep

 

 

Shailendra prasad singh (Lawyer)     08 February 2011

Hello Mr. Hardeep

                                      i m agreed with padma's opinion u file a complaint case against ur lawyer in consumer forum and u will succeed there with this judgement passed against a lawyer. u can search it at www.indiankanoon.org/doc/562637/

Equivalent citations: III (2007) CPJ 337 NC
Bench: M Shah, R Rao

D.K. Gandhi Ps, National Institute Of Communicable Diseases vs M. Mathias on 6/8/2007

ORDER

M.B. Shah, J. (President)

1. The State Commission, Delhi, by its order dated 10.3.2006 in Appeal No. 1815 of 2000 held that the services rendered by the Lawyer would not come within the ambit of Section 2(1)(o) of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, as the client executes the power of attorney authorizing the Counsel to do certain acts on his behalf and there is no term of contract as to the liability of the lawyer in case he fails to do any such act. The State Commission further observed that it is a unilateral contract executed by the client giving authority to the lawyer to appear and represent the matter on his behalf without any specific assurance or undertaking.

2. Against that order the Complainant has preferred this Revision Petition.

Findigns:

3. In our view, the reasoning given by the State Commission is totally erroneous. The ambit and scope of Section 2(1)(o) of the Consumer Protection Act which defines 'service' is very wide and by this time well established. It covers all services except rendering of services free of charge or a contract of personal service. Undisputedly, lawyers are rendering service. They are charging fees. It is not a contract of personal service. Therefore, there is no reason to hold that they are not covered by the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. The State Commission approached the question totally in an erroneous manner by holding that by executing power of attorney the client authorizes the Lawyer to do certain acts on his behalf and there is no term of contract as to the liability of the lawyer in case he fails to do such act. It is to be stated that a Lawyer may not be responsible for the favourable outcome of a case as the result/out come does not depend upon only on lawyers' work. But, if there is deficiency in rendering services promised, for which consideration in the form of fee is received by him, then the lawyers can be proceeded against under the Consumer Protection Act. Further, it is totally erroneous to hold that it is a unilateral contract executed by the client by giving authority to the lawyer to appear and represent the matter. Apparently, it is a bilateral contract between the client and the lawyer, and, that too, on receipt of fees, lawyer would appear and represent the matter on behalf of his client. To hold that contract is unilateral is to ignore the fact that even after discussion the client may not engage the Advocate or the Advocate may refuse to accept the brief. Hence, such a contract can never be said to be unilateral.

4. Further, it is not necessary to refer to judgments on this well settled law, still, we would refer to the case of Lucknow Development Authority v. M.K. Gupta , wherein the Apex Court observed as under:

The concept of service thus is very wide. How it (the concept of 'service') should be understood and what it means, depends on the context in which it has been used in any enactment. Clause ( o ) of the definition section defines it as under:

'service' means service of any descripttion which is made available to potential users and includes the provision of facilities in connection with banking, financing, insurance, transport, processing, supply of electrical or other energy, board or lodging or both, housing construction, entertainment, amusement or the purveying of news or other information, but does not include the rendering of any service free of charge or under a contract of personal service;

5. It is in three parts. The main part is followed by inclusive clause and ends by exclusionary clause. The main clause itself is very wide. It applies to any service made available to potential users. The words 'any' and 'potential' are significant. Both are of wide amplitude. The word 'any' dictionarily means 'one or some or all'. In Black's Law Dictionary it is explained thus, "word 'any' has a diversity of meaning and may be employed to indicate 'all' or 'every' as well as 'some' or 'one' and its meaning in a given statute depends upon the context and the subject-matter of the statute". The use of the word 'any' in the context it has been used in Clause ( o ) indicates that it has been used in wider sense extending from one to all.

6. The Court held that the importance of the Act lies in promoting welfare of the society inasmuch as it attempts to remove the helplessness of a consumer as he faces against powerful business; "producers have secured power" to "rob the rest". The might of public bodies which are degenerating into storehouses of inaction where papers do not move from one desk to another as a matter of duty and responsibility but for extraneous consideration leaving the common man helpless and shocked.

7. To what extent the aforesaid observations apply to various professions in the country is to be imagined and it is a matter of guess work.

8. Thereafter in the case of Indian Medical Association v. V.P. Shantha and Ors. the Apex Court discussed whether medical practitioner would be covered by the said definition. For this purpose, it was observed that in the matter of professional liability, professions differ from other occupations for the reason that professions operate in spheres where success cannot be achieved in every case and very often success or failure depends upon factors beyond the professional man's control. In devising a rational approach to professional liability which must provide proper protection to the consumer while allowing for the factors mentioned above, the approach of the courts is to require that professional men should possess a certain minimum degree of competence and that they should exercise reasonable care in the discharge of their duties. If there is negligence on the part of medical practitioner, the right of affected person to seek redress would be covered by the Act. Medical practitioners would not be outside the purview of the provisions of the Act.

9. The same principle would apply in case of service to be rendered by a lawyer.

10. Lastly, in Kishore Lal v. Chairman, Employees' State Insurance Corporation (2007) 4 SCC 579 the Apex observed:

It has been held in numerous cases of this Court that jurisdiction of the Consumer Fora has to be construed liberally so as to bring many cases under it for their speedy disposal. The Act being a beneficial legislation, it should receive a liberal construction.

11. Finally in the case of Jacob Mathew v. State of Punjab the Apex Court has held that in law of negligence, professionals such as lawyers, doctors, architects and others are included in the category of persons professing some special skill or skilled persons generally and a professional may be held liable for negligence on one of the two findings: either he was not possessed of the requisite skill which he professed to have possessed, or, he did not exercise, with reasonable competence in the given case, the skill which he did possess.

12. Further, this Commission has taken a consistent view that if there is deficiency in service rendered by the Lawyers, complaint under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is maintainable.

13. For the reasons stated above, the impugned order passed by the State Commission is set aside and the matter is remitted to the State Commission for deciding the same on merits in accordance with law. The Appeal stands allowed accordingly. There shall be no order as to costs.

1 Like

valentine thakkar (advocate)     09 February 2011

It is a pity that there are dishonest and insincere lawyers roaming the streets. However,  granting "success fee" in Inida would be doing injustice to many good lawyers. Here judgements are being fixed like "match fixing". Especially in the lower courts judgement are pre-determined. Who cares for the facts or vehement arguments made in a first class manner? Famous saying in the legla parlance is "face value" or  "cash value". In this field - though it is called a learned profession - gold medalists and meritorious lawyers are leading a briefless career. When I was in the 7th Std. in the school we had a poem in our English Language Course - "The Briefless Barrister" and after so many years now I have realised how true that peom was!

3 Like

Hardeep (Business)     15 February 2011

Hi Everyone

Thanks for reading and commenting upon this thread....

@Shailendra : Thanks much for providing the relevant cases. In case I proceed further they would indeed be useful.

Recently I have won a case in Consumer Court , proceeding on my own without a lawyer so your inputs encourage me to look in that dicetion, if need be.

@Valentine : I am not clear how would a good lawyer suffer if success fee is given.  On the other hand , a lawyer would pick up the case only after due scrutiny and if it is not workable, advise the client not to proceed further, thereby avoiding unnecessary litigation.  If it is workable, then he would put in his best efforts since he'd be paid  a major portion of his fee only if he succeeds.  Of course there'd be "fixers"everywhere - including the lower courts for example. And then a Success Fee Model would encourage the right litigants to proceed with the case even if a lower court rules adversely since they would have the resources left to pursue the case in the higher courts. Over time, the better lawyers would gain a reputation in their respective domains, thus helping the system all round.

I have been to the Court quite afew times over the last 2-3 years and have seen lawyers who can not even speak Hindi/ English, what to argue their cases ! Should these lawyers be "practicing"to begin with ? And isn't their "practice "on hapless "victims"they acquire, obviously, by misrepresenting their skills ?  Such a lawyer would automatically be weeded out in a Success Fee model, in a very quick time.

Just my opinion, welcome all views.....

@Harsh : Thanks much for your offfer of help. If need be, I'll contact you.

 

Hardeep

valentine thakkar (advocate)     15 February 2011

Dear Hardeep

Do U want to say that the advocates who are not getting the desired results are bad advocates? In India a person gets business and an advocate gets briefs depending upon which community he belongs to. Hardly any consideration is given to good or bad advocacy. The Aam Adami does not know the intricacies of law and the tricks of practice. As in politics so in any business/profession. I have been in this field since many many years and I have seen that the cunning advocates with vicious network get the most of cases. Their success depends upon the nexus with various people like politicians, police, judiciary, their own kith and kin in higher positions etc. etc. There are end number of reasons for getting results and it has nothing to do with the goodness of the advocate. The big names in this field hardly stand before the judge and get the result in their favour. Are they really good advocates? Do they deserve to get success fee? If success fee is introduced such unscrupulous people will flourish becasue of their pull and push and not becuase of anything esle. Good advocates will indeed suffer. There is not a grain of doubt about it. 

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