In the best of litigation practices, there comes a time when you realize that a client is not responding to your requests, is hiding evidence, is not paying your bills, or is simply a lying, rude, nasty person that you cannot tolerate. You might call that client an SOB, but let’s use the term you would use in court: that client is a “difficult client”.

The difficult client is going to get you into trouble sooner or later. Get rid of the difficult client, if you legally and ethically can do that.

Getting rid of a difficult client is the best form of risk management. It’s also the best way to free up your time to work on more satisfactory cases in files.

When it becomes evident that you must terminate the representation of your litigation client, here is a checklist to use. Termination is not a legally easy process, so use a checklist and double-check everything you do.

Before you get to the actual termination (and using the checklist), you need to determine the answer to three questions.

  1. When should you fire your client?
  2. Can you fire your client?
  3. What are the exact words – in one sentence – you will use to express your valid reason for withdrawal from representing your client?

Download the full 6 Page Checklist here.