Lawyer Sues Client Then Pays $102,000 to Settle

The Washington Post reports on an utter mess where a Virginia divorce lawyer sues his client and then winds up, after five monetary sanctions from the court for failing to appear for mandatory appearances, paying sanctions and paying the client he sued $102,000 to settle the client’s counterclaim.

Why did the lawyer settle? In pretrial discovery, the lawyer produced his billing records that showed there were days he billed for 39, 31, 40, and… 71 hours. That’s hard to do in a 24 hour day. The Post also made issue of the fact he billed 226 hours per month over a 16-month period. That seems more likely to be inflated given what we now know but there are some defense lawyers who are legitimately billing like that. (They don’t have lives, to be sure.)

Anyway, you don’t walk away from this article thinking you know the whole story. Something else had to be going on here.