When Lori C. Busch sought a divorce attorney in September 1998, she wanted the dissolution proceedings to be as quick and painless as possible. What she received when she signed a retainer agreement with former Avon, Conn., solo David M. Somers, she alleges, was quite the opposite.

As it turns out, Busch’s relationship with Somers also ended up in court, and that case has continued long after the marriage was dissolved. Somers filed a one-count breach of contract suit against Busch in December 2002 seeking more than $13,000 he said was owed to him for services rendered plus interest accrued; Busch refused to pay, claiming that the agreement was void ab initio because Somers did not see her case through.