Crash Victim Claims Lawyer Holding Compensation Money Since 2017

A man who was given his accident compensation in 2017 is yet to receive his money, which was deposited into the trust account of the lawyer he had hired.

Mohammed Sharif, 67, walks with a crutch and has had iron rods placed in his limbs after a road accident in 2010.

After making checks with the insurance company he found out in 2019, that he had been awarded $120,000 as compensation and the money was paid out to his Nasinu lawyer’s trust account.

Mr. Sharif claimed that he had engaged the services of a Nasinu lawyer in 2012. He said following that he had started making trips to Australia to visit his son.

He said he was frequently away and therefore did not consistently check up on the matter and thought he would be promptly updated by the lawyer.

He said in late 2017, he got curious because his visits to the lawyer’s office was always met with an excuse.

He said he made a trip to the High Court registry and he was informed the matter had been dealt with on March 30, 2017.

He said he made trips to the insurance company and was told that his lawyer was aware of what was happening. It was then Mr. Sharif asked his son Rizwan Sharif to help.

According to the son, they were able to establish that $120,000 had been paid out to the lawyer. He said he got in touch with the lawyer who made promises of paying the money back. Mr. Sharif said the lawyer had paid them $32,000, with the first payment of $20,000 and then a payment of $2000, followed by $10,000.

He said the matter was no longer the money, but about honesty and integrity.

The lawyer, in her response, said she would not be making any comments because this was a confidential matter between her and her client.

A complaint has also been lodged with the Legal Practitioners Unit.

It has also been established that the lawyer was publicly reprimanded and fined $1500 in 2015 for not responding to a complaint against her to the Independent Legal Services Commission (ILSC). She was not suspended because she gave ill health as a reason.

Last month, the ILSC suspended her for failing to respond to another complaint.