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  • Settlement Bamboozle?

    I am in the settlement phase of an employment discrimination lawsuit
    against my employer. Problem is, I had so much trouble with
    the attorneys I have been able to find and afford, I am now representing
    myself. I owe a little under $10k to my first attorney and $10k to my second attorney, as well. Initially, my employer stated- in writing- that it takes no position concerning my representation issues and/or liens on my settlement. But now I learn that the first and second attorneys had a stipulation- signed by the judge, no less- stating that I would not receive my monies until the first lawyer's lien was discharged. I didn't even know he had a lien, still don't know, in fact. If he does have a lien, I don't even know the amount he is claiming. I do know what I owe him, thanks to the Final Bill he sent me. Making this all more interesting is tha fact that my settlement had to be approved by Workers' Comp (in New york State), and was in fact approved. And now, get this, my employer is REFUSING to pay me the settlement due to "so much confusion caused by the fact that you have had so many attorneys and they are disputing the amount of money you still owe them". If this makes any sense to anyone, please explain it to me. In my view, I am being set up for a screw-over...to put it nicely. My question is: "Is a stipuilation between 2 lawyers- and the judge- BINDING on me in any way?" I have NO PROBLEM paying the lawyers I fired what I owe them, but is this being handled correctly? Is during the settlement phase of my lawsuit the time and place for my employer- and the judge- no less, to insert themselves into an 9former) Attorney-Client dispute over outstanding legal fees? Explain it to me like I'm a 6-year-old, please.

  • #2
    Your Legal Question

    I strongly advise you to talk to someone who is an expert in such court proceedings. However, it is very probable that the decision by the judge is binding.

    On the other hand, the decision of your employer to not pay, as per the settlement agreement, depends on what is written in the agreement itself. Chances are, however, that your employer is required to carry through with the agreement, regardless of any issues you may have with others involved with your case.

    Again, I strongly suggest you talk with a legal expert in your geographic area.
    Lillian Connell

    Forum Moderator
    www.laborlawtalk.com

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Caitlin
      I am in the settlement phase of an employment discrimination lawsuit
      against my employer. Problem is, I had so much trouble with
      the attorneys I have been able to find and afford, I am now representing
      myself. I owe a little under $10k to my first attorney and $10k to my second attorney, as well. Initially, my employer stated- in writing- that it takes no position concerning my representation issues and/or liens on my settlement. But now I learn that the first and second attorneys had a stipulation- signed by the judge, no less- stating that I would not receive my monies until the first lawyer's lien was discharged. I didn't even know he had a lien, still don't know, in fact. If he does have a lien, I don't even know the amount he is claiming. I do know what I owe him, thanks to the Final Bill he sent me. Making this all more interesting is tha fact that my settlement had to be approved by Workers' Comp (in New york State), and was in fact approved. And now, get this, my employer is REFUSING to pay me the settlement due to "so much confusion caused by the fact that you have had so many attorneys and they are disputing the amount of money you still owe them". If this makes any sense to anyone, please explain it to me. In my view, I am being set up for a screw-over...to put it nicely. My question is: "Is a stipuilation between 2 lawyers- and the judge- BINDING on me in any way?" I have NO PROBLEM paying the lawyers I fired what I owe them, but is this being handled correctly? Is during the settlement phase of my lawsuit the time and place for my employer- and the judge- no less, to insert themselves into an 9former) Attorney-Client dispute over outstanding legal fees? Explain it to me like I'm a 6-year-old, please.
      Hi Caitlan,
      You say you don't know the terms, is there a way for you to get an actual copy of the agreement?
      I would start by confronting your first attorney, whom there is claim that he has a lien on you without your knowledge. Be direct and get the answers you need from the people you already are in debt to and have been supposedly working on your behalf.
      Then-if you cannot get resoulution, unfortunately you may have to seek yet a third attorney to straighten the whole mess out.
      My guess is that the judge's binding is legal, but your employer is probably appealing the amount or the decision itself.
      Best wishes and keep us posted.
      Sue
      Sue
      FORUM MODERATOR

      www.laborlawtalk.com

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