Answer: I remember that episode. “Put a dollar in my pocket” he screamed to the criminals, in order to be bound to keep their secrets. Some visitors to my office actually try forcing a dollar bill in my pocket, to have their secrets protected. It creates an uncomfortable mood for the meeting. Payment of money, though, is not required to create an Attorney/Client relationship.
An individual can become a client based on various reasons. An implied relationship may arise based upon the perception of the individual. According to an Attorney Risk Management professional, David Grossbaum, Esq., “factors that might lead a court to conclude that the attorney impliedly agreed to provide legal services include”:
- written correspondence between the attorney and potential client,
- payment by the potential client for an attorney’s costs or fees,
- future meetings scheduled or contemplated,
- discouragement of seeking advice from another attorney,
- the potential client’s reasonable reliance on the attorney’s advice.
Attorney James Haroutunian practices real-estate law, estate planning and probate at 630 Boston Road, Billerica. He gladly invites questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 978-671-0711. His website blog is found at www.hlawoffice.com. This column is published for informational purposes only and not to be relied on as legal advice, in any manner.