Ms. Cohen will provide a second opinion as to the performance of your attorney. Please contact her for an initial free consultation. If you have a copy of the important parts of your file you can contact her for a second review. Although the initial consultation is free, you may enter into a contract for a complete review. Ms. Cohen has been practicing criminal law for over thirty years. She began her career as a law clerk to a criminal judge in the Common Pleas Court of Philadelphia. Following that service, she began a career in the District Attorney’s Office in Philadelphia enforcing the criminal law. After moving to New Jersey, she continued her career with the Camden County Prosecutor’s office and has been in private practice, representing defendant’s rights since 2006 in the Municipal Courts, Superior Courts and Federal Courts in New Jersey. She is the perfect attorney to consult for a second opinion. The important point is that you do not have to stay with an attorney just because you paid them a large fee. Before going to trial or entering into a plea, consult Ms. Cohen. Waiting until after trial or after you feel forced to accept a plea, may be too late. Consult Ms.Cohen if you are unsure.
THERE ARE PROCEDURES TO HAVE PART OF THE UNUSED FEE RETURNED.
Importantly, New Jersey attorneys are required to provide new clients with either a written fee agreement or a letter summarizing the fee arrangement. This must be done when, or shortly after, the attorney first accepts the case. The agreements should include the services that you expect the attorney to perform and how much these and other services will cost. If you have not received a contract or an agreement, the attorney may be required to return a large portion of the fee. Many times, in criminal law you give the attorney a large deposit or retainer, sometimes it is the entire amount needed for representation and trial. If you are unhappy with your attorney you do not have to stay with the attorney, just because you paid a large fee.
Ms. Cohen may help you get a portion of the fee returned or guide you as to the procedures to get your unused portion of the fee returned.
the Supreme Court of New Jersey has established the fee arbitration process as a low-cost and efficient method to resolve such disputes. Fee arbitration is impartial and inexpensive, and the arbitration process is typically resolved more quickly than a court case. The fee arbitration process may be less stressful for all involved, since it is less formal and designed to bring matters towards their conclusion in a straightforward, time-saving, and efficient way.
Especially in the field of criminal defense or criminal law, a fee arbitration is a useful tool. If you are not certain how to begin the process, Ms. Cohen’s office can help. If you have further questions regarding a fee arbitration either call Ms. Cohen’s office, call the office of attorney ethics at 609-403-7800, extension 34120 or forms and information are available online at the Office of Attorney Ethics home page.
If you are in a county jail, or State prison, the arbitrators and court will make arrangements to have your dispute hearing in or near the courthouse or jail. Even if you are serving a sentence, you can use the procedures of fee arbitration. Sometimes you can reach an agreement with the attorney. I always recommend sending a certified letter to the attorney who represented you and following through. If you do not hear from the attorney’s office it may be the right time to complete the application for a fee arbitration.
The important point is that you should not continue with an attorney if you are not confident in the representation. Call or contact Ms. Cohen’s office for a second opinion or advise how to file a fee arbitration.