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Anyone know what a solicitor would define as a "conflict" when saying they're unable to represent a client for this reason?

(7 Posts)
Loftella Fri 06-Jan-17 10:49:08

I've just tried to make an initial appointment with a solicitor to discuss separating from my H but they've told me they can't represent me because of a "conflict". I know he consulted this firm last year about an employment issue. Is that what causes the conflict or would a conflict only arise if he'd consulted them about separating? The solicitor who handles family law is a different person from the employment solicitor within the firm.

SpotTheDuck Fri 06-Jan-17 10:51:55

That would be a conflict: they've advised him before, admittedly on a different topic but their firm holds personal information about him and his employment history. It's possible that could be relevant to sorting out finances on a separation, or it's possible his employment history would be relevant to custody issues (e.g. A disciplinary history of angry outbursts could count against him).

So they can't represent you as they've already represented him.

cookiefiend Fri 06-Jan-17 10:54:33

Yeah most firms will just check their computers to see if they have recently represented the other party and if they have it is a possible conflict of interest so you are best to go elsewhere. It doesn't mean he has consulted them on this issue, though of course he could have done.

Loftella Fri 06-Jan-17 10:57:51

Thank you both, that's really helpful to know. Better do my research to find another firm!

Fidelia Fri 06-Jan-17 11:07:00

Just be aware that some separating partners will deliberately go to as many free consults as possible to prevent their Ex from being able to have a decent solicitor....

Roomba Fri 06-Jan-17 11:26:41

I know someone who did this, after she read about it on MN! She said her ex had a hard time finding a local solicitor who could represent him. Not sure many solicitors do the "free half hour" thing any more though, so it may not be as easy these days.

JaxingJump Fri 06-Jan-17 11:28:33

What a shitty and spiteful thing to do. Not clever. Just low.

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