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Ex-Client Ordered to Pay Law Firm Bills
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After a Manhattan man structured his sizable divorce proceeds to avoid retaining any liquid assets — thereby leaving himself with insufficient funds to satisfy a $70,000 charging lien in favor of his former attorneys — a state Supreme Court judge has ordered him to use his retirement accounts to pay his outstanding legal bill, any taxes or penalties for early withdrawals notwithstanding.

Plaintiff Antonio Memmo became displeased with NYC-based law firm Mayerson Stutman Abramowitz Royer shortly before his divorce trial began, and fired them. The firm wanted $103,000 for services rendered, but Memmo agreed to pay $70,000.

  
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But according to Supreme Court Justice Saralee Evans, Memmo creatively rearranged his finances after the deal to pay $70,000 was made, so he can’t get out of it.

Michael Stutman of Mayerson Stutman said of the decision, “I think this is Judge Evans making a clear statement that the courts should not stand idle while litigants, even with the assistance of their counsel, concoct a scheme to hang their prior lawyers out to dry.”

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