When you hire an attorney in California, it is reasonable for you to have certain expectations about how your attorney will represent you and handle your case. If your lawyer does not live up to your expectations or you otherwise feel you cannot work with him or her anymore, then you will need to end the relationship.
To begin with, you may not even realize that you can fire your attorney, but it is very much within your rights. Think of it this way. If you hired any other professional to do a job for you and you were not happy with his or her work, you would end the business transaction. This same is true for a lawyer.
The Balance notes that firing your attorney begins with paying any money you owe. You cannot walk out on the bill even if you are not happy with the services. You may be able to get the money back through a malpractice suit if your attorney was not following ethical and professional guidelines in his or her work.
Also, be aware that finding a new attorney takes time and could result in having to pay for services you have already paid for. Make sure that you have a very good reason for ending the relationship.
Hire a new attorney before you let the old one go. Make sure you understand the terms of your contract with your old attorney so you can easily get out of the relationship, and put your intentions in writing, so it is clear the relationship is severed. This information is for education and is not intended as legal advice.