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Scott Hinote, Attorney at Law, Ozark, MO Would Not Refund Court Fees For Which He Didn't File Ozark, Missouri
24th of Sep, 2011 by User403404
My wife and I rushed into the idea of getting a divorce without much discussion on many things going on in our lives. The divorce was going to be uncontested and I tried to get her to go through Family Mediation Services of Springfield , which offers divorce solutions for uncontested divorce. My wife decided to go through Scott Hinote, and instructed me her attorney would contact me. Knowing who her attorney was, I went to his office on Monday morning and informed him I wasn't going to contest the divorce. And told him I would cooperate with him and sign the papers. This was going to be one of the easiest divorces he had ever done--no assets, no children, and no contest. When my wife went in there a few hours later, Hinote embellished things describing the situation as hostile. Please remember, I instructed Hinote this was going to be a no contest divorce and that I would sign papers and cooperate with him. Obviously, Mr. Hinote understands that art of rhetoric and how to embellish in order to ensure he receives a check without hesitation. The next day, Hinote's office called and expected me to drop everything with thirty minutes notice to come in and sign papers. When I told them I could't be there in 30 minutes, they asked if I could be there by 2:00. It was 1:00 PM. I told them no, and the woman who called me was rude and seemed like she was inconvenienced by my decision not to rush to Ozark at her demand. I told her I would call her back. I remind you once again, this was going to be an uncontested divorce. I called her back and told her I would stop in on Friday morning. By Wednesday, I was missing my wife and was really having second thoughts about this divorce. We had turned to so many people looking for answers, and nothing was working out, but the one thing we hadn't turned to was God and the Bible. My wife must have been feeling the same thing. I fought calling her, and she eventually text messaged me that afternoon. Within 24 hours, we called the divorce off, and on Friday, I called Hinote's office letting him know I would not be in to sign papers. His office immediately called my wife to confirm. At this point, Hinote had already collected $500 for his fees and $90 to file. We inquired about a partial refund and a total refund of the court fees, which he never filed and for services he didn't complete. Hinote's office was slow to respond, and when they did he complained that he had to endure a hostile environment. However, this was always an uncontested divorce, and I up until Wednesday was always going into his office to sign the papers so he wouldn't have to have a deputy sign the papers. Describing this situation as hostile, Hinote said he would not refund his fees, but he would refund the $90 fee according to my wife. Hinote justified the $500 as his time, yet you can download divorce papers issued by the state of Missouri and have them filled out in less than an hour. It's not brain surgery. Filling out the paperwork is only half the effort. When we realized we weren't going to get a partial refund of that money, we did give him money to pay the court filing fee. This money never went to the courts and Hinote to date still is in possession of it. Now many weeks later, we still wait for the court fees to be refunded, and Hinote is ignoring any request we have made, both through telephone calls and e-mails, for the court fees. The sad thing is, before this we have referred people to his office, which we will not do anymore, and this is the thanks we get. We won't refer anyone else to Mr. Hinote. To be fair, we think a refund of $250 plus the $90 court fee is just. At this point, we would just be happy to get the court fees back that Hinote is in possession of since he never filed the paperwork with the court.

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