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ACC claimant 'devastated'

#1 User is offline   greg 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 07:36 AM

An ACC claimant who signed over every cent of her backdated payout to an advocate
says the Government should provide free legal support services.

Christchurch woman Natasha Howell, 44, was awarded $84,797 in compensation in a
settlement with ACC after her weekly payments were cancelled. Howell suffers from
severe pain related to spinal surgeries.

She had signed a contract handing over any backdated compensation to an
"accident compensation law specialist" in June 2017 to help her challenge
ACC's decision to cancel her payments.

Cadenhead does not have a practising certificate with the New Zealand Law Society
but is an enrolled barrister and solicitor. Not all ACC advocates have to be lawyers.

An estimated 30 to 40 advocates, who are not lawyers, represent ACC claimants at reviews each year.

The Government asked ACC to consider funding a free nationwide advocacy service 18 months ago.

A spokesman said ACC was "developing advice on the advocacy service recommendation,
which will go to the Board for approval, hopefully in April".

Access Support Services advocate Tony Gibbons said clients were usually charged
18 per cent of any back dated payment after deductions such as tax.

"I am surprised to hear any suggestion of a 100 per cent success fee being agreed
to by anyone let alone it being offered in the first place."

ACC barrister and researcher Warren Forster said vulnerable people could be taken
advantage of because there was no oversight or accountability of advocates.

"If they were lawyers you would go to the law society but for advocates there's nothing."

Forster said there had been a government policy over decades to exclude lawyers
from representing ACC claimants by setting costs too low.

In a submission to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment consultation
on increasing ACC review costs, Forster said the fees were based on "a lack of legalism" in disputes.


https://www.stuff.co...out-to-advocate
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#2 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 10:17 AM

Putting aside the individual involved in this article I like to first consider the merits of signing over percentage of entitlement agreement in exchange for legal services. The competing versions are the nanny state mentality as opposed to buyer beware. Do we want the State interfering with what potential arrangements that we might need to resort to in order to gain legal fairness. Let us not forget the ACC is part of the state and will invariably establish rules and mechanisms in their own interests rather than ours. Yes of course we claimants will be vulnerable not only because we are financially impoverished to acquire legal services but we are also injured and incapacitated, even second-class citizens. Personally I favour the right to control and maintain that control over my right of choice. I don't want any rights taken away from me simply because I am injured. So on the buyer beware principle I would favour some sort of advisory/quality control service by way of some form of registration of all advocates with that service being totally independent of the ACC in order to maintain integrity and quality of service thus eliminating those who are incapable of forming opinions as to the meaning and intense of the legislation and the wherewithal to determine what the ACC has done wrong. We have a similar model in the registration process of immigration consultant advocates.

The following example is an extreme circumstance of the above and I believe is quite commonplace.
An interesting comment from Warren "Forster said there had been a government policy over decades to exclude lawyers from representing ACC claimants by setting costs too low. " From my recollections when the ACC scheme was first introduced into New Zealand there was a promise of equality in the appeal process to ACC decisions by the claimant and decision maker of the ACC directly communicating their concerns to a reviewer with no other third party involved. It seems we have shifted to quite an extreme whereby in my case at least ACC funded three lawyers to defend the ACCs position against myself as a Lay litigant in the biggest hearing in the ACCs history. The ACC also relied upon hundreds of thousands of dollars of levy payer dollars being spent on private investigators the did nothing more than seeking out ways by which they might discredit me as opposed to funding a medical assessment to determine whether I had recovered from my injuries rendering the 1992 review hearings wrong to enable the ACC to make a new decision. The estimates of ACC spending on a judicial response to my appeal exceeded $1 million while at the same time asking legal aid services not to fund my case with any legal resource. The judge of that $10,000 when he heard that legal aid funding was not made. My lawyer who were supported by Warren informed the judge that he would not continue with the case for $10,000 as not counting medical reports and suchlike the costs were going to be well in excess of $100,000 given the fact that the ACC had introduced such a large volume of extraneous matters that need to be addressed. This left me standing alone in the biggest case in the ACC's history. Obviously I would have accepted any the in order to clear my name and sacrificed all of my entitlements except for the funding of medical treatment. As you might well expect people like Warren and the lawyer are not interested in this type of deal. Indeed this type of arrangement was either unlawful for lawyers in times gone by.

As lawyers are now allowed to enter into deals described in the above article we found sexual abuse cases being addressed by a law firm in Christchurch which I believe of their legal services for a third of the winnings. Within one year the law firm had generated well over $1 million income resulting in the ACC complaining. However there was little to no prospect of this large number of cases being addressed had a deal of this sort not been on offer. Those who could afford to go elsewhere did and perhaps at a lower cost. This speaks to the merits of the advocate bearing the burden of the risk with they offer of no success no payment arrangement with the success be an considerably larger than otherwise would have been paid had the advocate not been at risk.
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#3 User is offline   greg 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 10:57 AM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 05 March 2018 - 10:17 AM, said:

Putting aside the individual involved in this article I like to first consider the merits of signing over percentage of entitlement agreement in exchange for legal services. The competing versions are the nanny state mentality as opposed to buyer beware. Do we want the State interfering with what potential arrangements that we might need to resort to in order to gain legal fairness. Let us not forget the ACC is part of the state and will invariably establish rules and mechanisms in their own interests rather than ours. Yes of course we claimants will be vulnerable not only because we are financially impoverished to acquire legal services but we are also injured and incapacitated, even second-class citizens. Personally I favour the right to control and maintain that control over my right of choice. I don't want any rights taken away from me simply because I am injured. So on the buyer beware principle I would favour some sort of advisory/quality control service by way of some form of registration of all advocates with that service being totally independent of the ACC in order to maintain integrity and quality of service thus eliminating those who are incapable of forming opinions as to the meaning and intense of the legislation and the wherewithal to determine what the ACC has done wrong. We have a similar model in the registration process of immigration consultant advocates.

The following example is an extreme circumstance of the above and I believe is quite commonplace.
An interesting comment from Warren "Forster said there had been a government policy over decades to exclude lawyers from representing ACC claimants by setting costs too low. " From my recollections when the ACC scheme was first introduced into New Zealand there was a promise of equality in the appeal process to ACC decisions by the claimant and decision maker of the ACC directly communicating their concerns to a reviewer with no other third party involved. It seems we have shifted to quite an extreme whereby in my case at least ACC funded three lawyers to defend the ACCs position against myself as a Lay litigant in the biggest hearing in the ACCs history. The ACC also relied upon hundreds of thousands of dollars of levy payer dollars being spent on private investigators the did nothing more than seeking out ways by which they might discredit me as opposed to funding a medical assessment to determine whether I had recovered from my injuries rendering the 1992 review hearings wrong to enable the ACC to make a new decision. The estimates of ACC spending on a judicial response to my appeal exceeded $1 million while at the same time asking legal aid services not to fund my case with any legal resource. The judge of that $10,000 when he heard that legal aid funding was not made. My lawyer who were supported by Warren informed the judge that he would not continue with the case for $10,000 as not counting medical reports and suchlike the costs were going to be well in excess of $100,000 given the fact that the ACC had introduced such a large volume of extraneous matters that need to be addressed. This left me standing alone in the biggest case in the ACC's history. Obviously I would have accepted any the in order to clear my name and sacrificed all of my entitlements except for the funding of medical treatment. As you might well expect people like Warren and the lawyer are not interested in this type of deal. Indeed this type of arrangement was either unlawful for lawyers in times gone by.

As lawyers are now allowed to enter into deals described in the above article we found sexual abuse cases being addressed by a law firm in Christchurch which I believe of their legal services for a third of the winnings. Within one year the law firm had generated well over $1 million income resulting in the ACC complaining. However there was little to no prospect of this large number of cases being addressed had a deal of this sort not been on offer. Those who could afford to go elsewhere did and perhaps at a lower cost. This speaks to the merits of the advocate bearing the burden of the risk with they offer of no success no payment arrangement with the success be an considerably larger than otherwise would have been paid had the advocate not been at risk.


Stop contaminating real threads with your version of NZ law which you have proven a very poor knowledge of.

post your lies in your own thread.
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#4 User is offline   magnacarta 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 10:58 AM

It seems to me that Andrew Cadenhead had not lawful authority or justification to demand such payment. Section 123 of the Principle AC Act 2001 proscribes that her entitlements are inalienable.

However, did he receive the payment from ACC or did she make the payment to him after she received it from ACC????????? That is the question.
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#5 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 12:09 PM

View Postgreg, on 05 March 2018 - 10:57 AM, said:

Stop contaminating real threads with your version of NZ law which you have proven a very poor knowledge of.

post your lies in your own thread.


What point of law have you read into what I wrote as I thought what I had written was in regards to experience and observation consistent with the article written?
please explain.
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#6 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 12:15 PM

View Postmagnacarta, on 05 March 2018 - 10:58 AM, said:

It seems to me that Andrew Cadenhead had not lawful authority or justification to demand such payment. Section 123 of the Principle AC Act 2001 proscribes that her entitlements are inalienable.

However, did he receive the payment from ACC or did she make the payment to him after she received it from ACC????????? That is the question.


The entitlements would have been paid to her that she had already entered into a lawful contract with her legal counsel. In the United States of America most ordinary folk enter into such agreements with their legal counsel whereby the legal counsel which for a percentage. In this case Andrew Cadenhead would have been reasonably aware of the prospects of winning and what those winnings were expected to be. What other choices did she have? Nobody should be expected to work for nothing either.

Let us not forget that ACC rely upon legal counsel to create ever more complex rationale and justification to support the entirely irrational unlawful decisions of the ACC which means their defence to an appeal of entitlements will be very very expensive and occupy a lot of the courts time. Claimant counsel costs therefore go up proportionately. It is a common ploy for a losing side to treat the legal arena as some form of competition with one of the mechanisms to win being increasing the costs of the hearing until the claimant and/or legal counsel can no longer compete on a financial basis. That is what I thought I had explained happen to myself.

With regards to your question, you have already answered it in as much as the claimants entitlements are In amiable which means ACC would have had to pay her And she would have had to pay her bills to the lawyer as per the contract. What we must never failed to overlook as to how much work was required to win and how much work did Andrew Cadenhead actually do. We don't know. Talking to legal counsel throughout New Zealand legal costs quite routinely go up over $100,000 so I don't find Andrew Cadenhead's expenses at all unusual. What is unusual is that legal counsel may have actually paid something closer to what they are worth.

I am of the opinion that while the legal counsel in New Zealand are grossly underpaid for claimants it will only attract the incompetent into this line of work with the result that cases that should win fail with the result that ACC are generating more and more caselaw in their favour. That is the unacceptable situation.
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#7 User is offline   Hemi 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 01:02 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 05 March 2018 - 10:17 AM, said:

Putting aside the individual involved in this article I like to first consider the merits of signing over percentage of entitlement agreement in exchange for legal services. The competing versions are the nanny state mentality as opposed to buyer beware. Do we want the State interfering with what potential arrangements that we might need to resort to in order to gain legal fairness. Let us not forget the ACC is part of the state and will invariably establish rules and mechanisms in their own interests rather than ours. Yes of course we claimants will be vulnerable not only because we are financially impoverished to acquire legal services but we are also injured and incapacitated, even second-class citizens. Personally I favour the right to control and maintain that control over my right of choice. I don't want any rights taken away from me simply because I am injured. So on the buyer beware principle I would favour some sort of advisory/quality control service by way of some form of registration of all advocates with that service being totally independent of the ACC in order to maintain integrity and quality of service thus eliminating those who are incapable of forming opinions as to the meaning and intense of the legislation and the wherewithal to determine what the ACC has done wrong. We have a similar model in the registration process of immigration consultant advocates.

The following example is an extreme circumstance of the above and I believe is quite commonplace.
An interesting comment from Warren "Forster said there had been a government policy over decades to exclude lawyers from representing ACC claimants by setting costs too low. " From my recollections when the ACC scheme was first introduced into New Zealand there was a promise of equality in the appeal process to ACC decisions by the claimant and decision maker of the ACC directly communicating their concerns to a reviewer with no other third party involved. It seems we have shifted to quite an extreme whereby in my case at least ACC funded three lawyers to defend the ACCs position against myself as a Lay litigant in the biggest hearing in the ACCs history. The ACC also relied upon hundreds of thousands of dollars of levy payer dollars being spent on private investigators the did nothing more than seeking out ways by which they might discredit me as opposed to funding a medical assessment to determine whether I had recovered from my injuries rendering the 1992 review hearings wrong to enable the ACC to make a new decision. The estimates of ACC spending on a judicial response to my appeal exceeded $1 million while at the same time asking legal aid services not to fund my case with any legal resource. The judge of that $10,000 when he heard that legal aid funding was not made. My lawyer who were supported by Warren informed the judge that he would not continue with the case for $10,000 as not counting medical reports and suchlike the costs were going to be well in excess of $100,000 given the fact that the ACC had introduced such a large volume of extraneous matters that need to be addressed. This left me standing alone in the biggest case in the ACC's history. Obviously I would have accepted any the in order to clear my name and sacrificed all of my entitlements except for the funding of medical treatment. As you might well expect people like Warren and the lawyer are not interested in this type of deal. Indeed this type of arrangement was either unlawful for lawyers in times gone by.

As lawyers are now allowed to enter into deals described in the above article we found sexual abuse cases being addressed by a law firm in Christchurch which I believe of their legal services for a third of the winnings. Within one year the law firm had generated well over $1 million income resulting in the ACC complaining. However there was little to no prospect of this large number of cases being addressed had a deal of this sort not been on offer. Those who could afford to go elsewhere did and perhaps at a lower cost. This speaks to the merits of the advocate bearing the burden of the risk with they offer of no success no payment arrangement with the success be an considerably larger than otherwise would have been paid had the advocate not been at risk.


DiD ACC ask legal aid not to fund you
surely you would have proof of documentation if such as act was taken by acc?? you have that to show as proof of your accusation ???

You are known to have legal aid refused as you have simply used up your lot with legal aid being unable to present a valid /with evidence/arguments , all clear and of sound legal argument that could go to the courts with some hope of success,
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#8 User is offline   Hemi 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 01:08 PM

View Postmagnacarta, on 05 March 2018 - 10:58 AM, said:

It seems to me that Andrew Cadenhead had not lawful authority or justification to demand such payment. Section 123 of the Principle AC Act 2001 proscribes that her entitlements are inalienable.

However, did he receive the payment from ACC or did she make the payment to him after she received it from ACC????????? That is the question.


Quite likely =if as other models of advocacy operational tactics =she signed over to have the advocate as her agent representative in all matters being challenged thus the advocate would have the money to them as the agent and disburse the residue if any to the claimant as per the agreement of agent the advocate hand in hand,


as an example
advocate agent representative for a claimant
money from acc to advocate as per agent contract
50% to advocate fees and 50% to claimant.
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#9 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 05:43 PM

There is no suggestion of any trickery involved between Cadenhead and his client.
There is nothing even to suggest that the funds were redirected directly to Cadenhead.
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#10 User is offline   greg 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 07:33 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 05 March 2018 - 05:43 PM, said:

There is no suggestion of any trickery involved between Cadenhead and his client.
There is nothing even to suggest that the funds were redirected directly to Cadenhead.


Due to your lies , you will never be in this position of
signing forms and trusting what then seem honest advocates.

I get screwed into paying for a future 9% ERC and just by chance , that
calc. was exactly the same as the back payment from ACC less abatements.

No others then in 1994 were prepared or available to protect claimants from
those legals , some who still are around today.

Today that firm has long gone but certain names then still exist that were part.
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#11 User is offline   greg 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 07:38 PM

Maybe this ;Access Support Services advocate Tony Gibbons said clients were usually charged
18 per cent of any back dated payment after deductions such as tax.

Nothing about future ERC. I got screwed over.

Nothing about an upfront payment which means they
have enough info for you to win otherwise they wont touch your case.

If this is true , then I support them .
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#12 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 07:51 PM

Let the buyer beware
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#13 User is offline   greg 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 08:02 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 05 March 2018 - 07:51 PM, said:

Let the buyer beware


As you have never won any court case eg Judgements
who are you to claim any knowledge of NZ ACC law.?

Mr Thomas you have no creditability to even post with
past ACC ERC. winners , something you have never achieved .

It would appear this statement certainly applies to you;

'Nothing about an upfront payment which means they
have enough info for you to win otherwise they wont touch your case.'
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#14 User is offline   Hemi 

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 09:47 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 05 March 2018 - 05:43 PM, said:

There is no suggestion of any trickery involved between Cadenhead and his client.
There is nothing even to suggest that the funds were redirected directly to Cadenhead.

Perhaps you should enter into a contract with cadenhead and find out how the deal works then Thomas seeing your such a know all.
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#15 User is offline   DARRELLGEMMA 

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Posted 06 March 2018 - 10:59 AM

 greg, on 05 March 2018 - 08:02 PM, said:

As you have never won any court case eg Judgements
who are you to claim any knowledge of NZ ACC law.?

Mr Thomas you have no creditability to even post with
past ACC ERC. winners , something you have never achieved .

It would appear this statement certainly applies to you;

'Nothing about an upfront payment which means they
have enough info for you to win otherwise they wont touch your case.'

Always ask first what the chances of success are.
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#16 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 06 March 2018 - 11:00 AM

When entering into a no win no cost scenario with a advocate it is a given that the advocate does believe the case otherwise they would not waste their time on a case that cannot win.
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#17 User is offline   MINI 

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Posted 08 March 2018 - 01:49 PM

View Postgreg, on 05 March 2018 - 07:38 PM, said:

Maybe this ;Access Support Services advocate Tony Gibbons said clients were usually charged
18 per cent of any back dated payment after deductions such as tax.

Nothing about future ERC. I got screwed over.

Nothing about an upfront payment which means they
have enough info for you to win otherwise they wont touch your case.

If this is true , then I support them .


Greg

I got charged 33% for my I/A in 2001. I found have lawyers that knew what they were doing while I was out of the country, a weight I dint have to carry, as I knew nothing about ACC legislation.

Even though by the time I got back to sort out the arrears, I had increased my payment by doing it myself. I have never regretting having to pay the 33%, as the payment was lessened by fixing up his mistakes, taking it over myself.

Finding and fixing the errors of some, is the answer to this overcharging.

In the first place this maybe a mistake of the % of the payment. In fact it may not have been a % at all ie 100 %. It may simply have been a contract of no win, no fee. Win, payment is all of backdated w/c.

I consider this totally fair. After all this person has her w/c back again and the case has probable taken a couple of years.

I would like to read the contract and see what she agreed with. This agent ran the risk of hours of work for no return if he got the wrong judge on a bad day. It is as easy as that to fail.

She should be bitching about being overtaxed and then she would have my sympathy and some money back. Why doesn't she try getting the amount of the overtaxing back again from ACC as an out of legislation payment.

That is not investigative reporting as the writer doesn't know what actually happens in these cases or they would know there are more interesting stories that can stand up to the law, and really be a problem. This is a home made one.

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#18 User is offline   DARRELLGEMMA 

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 09:48 AM

I always did my acc cases on legal aid because lawyers charge a hell of a sum just to represent you at reviews, appeals. My legal aid bill is close to $20,000 dollars. One review i didn't attend as i was in hospital having tests carried out on my heart condition. Been diagnosed with severe mitral valve regurgitation is not easy. Dealing with acc can be stressful. The only time i contact them is when i am due to get paid very soon. They say i am impaired not impaired & then impaired. They can't even make up there own minds. See where the complicated part comes in. They say 10% 8% 10% confused me too. But Andrew soon starting writing to them & said i am now a victim of rogue assessments. Decision 57/2013 Pearce V ACC Judge Ongley. He said there is a subtle point to be decided & i still lost. But who cares anyway. Lawyers should be revealing how much they charge for their services.
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#19 User is offline   tommy 

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 05:21 PM

buyer beware
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#20 User is offline   MINI 

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 03:42 PM

View PostHemi, on 05 March 2018 - 01:08 PM, said:

Quite likely =if as other models of advocacy operational tactics =she signed over to have the advocate as her agent representative in all matters being challenged thus the advocate would have the money to them as the agent and disburse the residue if any to the claimant as per the agreement of agent the advocate hand in hand,


as an example
advocate agent representative for a claimant
money from acc to advocate as per agent contract
50% to advocate fees and 50% to claimant.


MMMM come to think of it, the lawyer took his cut out and then sent me the rest, through my NZ bank account, I still had here. So Hemi you might have the exact way it is done. Because there was nothing unlawful in mine. I had signed the document for him to reprecent me and
have 33% of the winnings.

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