I was recently in Court and a very large Toronto law firm brought a Motion to reinstate an action that had been dismissed for delay.
The Defendant argued that not only should the action remain dismissed for delay, it should remain dismissed for the Plaintiff’s failure to produce documents they were ordered by not one, not two, but three deputy judges.
The Defendant’s lawyers took issue with the fact that over a span of 1.5 years, the law firm representing the Plaintiff had 7 lawyers on the file – that’s right, 7!
What does that mean? Well, 7 lawyers having to review a tonne of paperwork to be able to represent their client, obviously causes significant delays. The Defendant’s lawyer told the court that every time they called the firm, they got the same excuse: “I’m new on the file, I have to review it and get back to you.” They apparently never did get back to them.
So, what does this have to do with the title of this blog?
That does not happen at Andriessen & Associates!
When a file is assigned to me or a lawyer at our firm, that file usually stays with that individual until its closed.
I think as legal representatives we owe it to our clients that their representation remains consistent throughout litigation. It prevents delays and costs having each representative having to familiarize themselves with the file over and over again. It also helps to build a relationship with the client.
There is nothing more annoying than calling a lawyer or paralegal and they tell you that they would will get back to you, because they have to review the file.
I currently have about 50 active files (if not more), and if you ask me for an update on any one of those 50 files, I can tell you where we are at. Just don’t ask me what the file number is, because I’ve never been able to remember them. Our law clerk Christine Allan however, can remember every file number. It’s impressive.
I am not sure if the turnaround in larger law firms is high, but it is sure complicates things when you have multiple lawyers on a file and can’t move the matter forward.
Thankfully, we handle our files from start to finish, so you know who you are working with, and without delay.
Murray Brown, Licensed Paralegal