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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:On March 10, 2004, the trial court denied the relators’ (hereinafter “Daniels”) second motion for withdrawal of counsel in cause number 2002-CI-16967, styled In the Matter of the Marriage of Keith Edward Cummings (references to “Cummings” are to Keith Edward) and Kelvia Michelle Cummings and In the Interest of Dagen Keith William Cummings, Minor Child. On March 11, 2004, Daniels filed a petition for writ of mandamus, asserting the trial court erred in denying his motion to withdraw. HOLDING:Conditionally granted. In his motion to withdraw, Daniels stated the following grounds as the basis for withdrawal: 1. non-payment of fees; 2. non-payment of fees will result in an unreasonable financial burden on his law office; and 3. representation has been rendered unreasonably difficult by Cummings’ actions and the actions of Cummings’ agent (who is Cummings’ mother, Carolyn Lee). At the time the second motion to withdraw was filed, trial was set to commence in 71 days. There is no dispute here that Daniels and Cummings entered into a written engagement agreement that set forth Cummings’ and Lee’s obligation to pay Daniels’ fees, court costs and expenses. The agreement was signed by Daniels, Cummings as the client, and Lee as guarantor and obligor. Under the engagement agreement, Daniels reserved the right to withdraw as counsel if Cummings and Lee failed to pay the fees due. There is no dispute that Daniels’ fees have not been paid. At the time of the hearing on the second motion to withdraw, Daniels was owed approximately $30,000. Daniels testified trial fees may amount to another $25,000 for a five-day jury trial, and his firm could not afford to “offset that kind of hit.” Although Daniels testified he has been paid approximately $60,000, the court is unable to determine what portion of this amount is for fees and what portion is for expenses and court costs. However, there is evidence that 11 depositions have been taken in the case, some of which occurred out of town. Daniels also sought to establish that his representation of Cummings had been rendered unreasonably difficult and that other good cause for withdrawal existed. Daniels offered into evidence a December 2003 letter from Cummings to Daniels in which Cummings stated as follows: “in view of your past and recent suggestions, ideas, [sic] animosity toward my mother and particularly your bills, I do question your motives and representation of my case. . . . The conflict you have caused by my mother’s not being able to get answers, to include [unreadable] billing from you and your staff (per your orders) has substantially affected my case, to the point I had to seek additional counsel.” Daniels testified he has had restrictions placed on him as to the work he could perform on Cummings’ behalf. While other rules require a determination of whether the client will be adversely affected, withdrawal is permitted under Texas Rules of Disciplinary Procedure �1.15(b)(2) through (b)(7) “even though the withdrawal may have a material adverse effect upon the interests of the client.” Tex. Disciplinary R. Prof’l Conduct 1.15, cmt. 8. The record reveals Daniels established good cause justifying his withdrawal: 1. Cummings and Lee failed to substantially fulfill their obligations under the engagement agreement, including their obligation to pay Daniel’s fees; 2. continued representation would result in an unreasonable financial burden on Daniels and his office; 3. and Cummings and Lee’s actions have rendered continued representation difficult. Accordingly, the trial court erred in denying Daniels’ motion to withdraw. OPINION:Marion, J.; Green, Marion and Speedlin, JJ.

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