Presentation on theme: "Hypotheticals for Discussion. You are appointed to represent Jamie, age 10 and Jenny, age six, in a child custody dispute. In a private meeting, James."— Presentation transcript:
You are appointed to represent Jamie, age 10 and Jenny, age six, in a child custody dispute. In a private meeting, James tells you that he wants to live with his mother because he feels safer and happier with her, but his father is pushing him to tell you that he wants to live with him and to make up a story about his mother leaving him alone with his sister to go out with her boyfriend. James asks you not to reveal his true wish, as he is telling his father and his father’s family that he wants to stay with them. His is afraid that if his father finds out his true feelings, he will be furious. James asks you to work it out so that he lives with his mother, but his father never finds out why. James does want to spend time with his father, as his father is his main coach for sports, and they have fun together when they are not talking about his mother. In a private meeting, Jenny says she loves both of her parents and wants them to be together again, even though she is scared when her father gets angry at her mother. Jenny does not seem to comprehend your questions regarding confidentiality. The children’s father, Alex, says that the children want to live with him because they hate being with their mother and her new boyfriend and are afraid when she leaves them alone. Their mother, Andrea, says the children are fearful of their father’s temper and should only see him in supervised visits. The parties’ attorneys press you to take a position in the case now, as the parties are running out of money and the case requires a prompt resolution. Each attorney is incredulous that you are not acting promptly and taking their client’s side “in the children’s best interest.” The judge has ordered only one of the parents, the father, Alex, to pay your fees. The judge questions you about the children’s stated wishes and asks you to hold a meeting in your office to settle the case. What do you do?
A service provider calls your LSP’s intake to state that a client with a mental illness is being neglected by her guardian. The service provider cannot get the guardian to sign forms to move the client to a different day program or to give authority for the client to leave the facility other than to go to the day program. The attorney wants to speak to the client and agrees to meet the client at the day program. Upon arrival, the client informs the attorney that she wants the social worker from the service provider present for the interview. In addition, the attorney receives a telephone call that the guardian does not want the attorney meeting with the ward without the guardian and her attorney present. What should the attorney do?
A married couple comes to your legal aid desk saying “WE need help.” They are both named as defendants in an eviction action based on nonpayment of rent, seeking a money judgment and possession of the apartment. The husband is the only named tenant on the lease. Wife was home when the sheriff came to serve process, but she never answered the door, and the sheriff just jammed the summonses under the door. The court’s docket reflects that Wife was personally served and Husband was served by substituted service. They paid the rent out of their joint bank checking account each month until a few months ago. --Are Wife and Husband’s legal interests the same, or if not, how do they conflict? --Which person do you advise? Husband, Wife, both or neither one? Why? --If you have to pick just one client, who is the “better” client to serve? Based on what considerations? --Do you decide who should be the client, or do you let the couple decide? Why? Suppose you decided to advise the Wife only as the client in the above service. Suppose that two months later, Husband alone now comes to your desk seeking advice on the fact that a money judgment for the rent was entered against him only, an order of possession was entered against both Husband and Wife, they were forcibly evicted by the sheriff, and now their joint bank account is frozen. Can you advise him? Why or why not?
A person calls your legal aid hotline stating that he has a “power of attorney” over his elderly mother, and she is being sued over a debt and insists that you deal with him concerning the matter. He faxes in an executed power of attorney pursuant to your request, and you see that it is dated just a few days earlier, but that it does follows the Illinois statutory short form for power of attorney, i.e. it looks legitimate. When you say you want to talk to Mother first, just to confirm that she wishes for him to be handling this matter with you, Son refuses to let you talk to his Mother. --What do you do? Who is your client? The Son? The Mother? Who are you “responsible” to? Who do you take direction from? --Suppose you did advise Son pursuant to this POA. A month later, you get a phone call from Mother at your legal aid hotline, inquiring about “what do I do” about a debt collection case against her (i.e. the very same matter Son has called about and been advised about which she seems to know nothing of). What do you do? Who do you talk to? What if anything do you advise?