EXCLUSIVE: Local mom wants accountability from judge on suspended attorney

By  | 

FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) "We all want to go after Jesse Matson and how awful his practice was. There still needs to be an accountability at a higher level to catch this before it gets to this point where so many people do fall victim." -Amanda Robinette, Client of Jesse Matson.


After losing thousands to an attorney who never finished the job, a local mom is now blaming the judge who she says didn't report his misconduct.

Over the past few months, we've been following frustrated clients of North Dakota’s suspended attorney, Jesse Matson.

Many of them claim he takes their money and never gets them any results.

Amanda Robinette needed an attorney for a custody battle over her twin sons

"You hire an attorney because you don't know the law, you don't know what to expect and you have to have blind faith in them because their telling you want sounds plausible," says Robinette.

She hired Jesse Matson.

"He spoke eloquently,” Robinette remembers. “I felt confident in him. He knew the law and as time went on, he wasn't very attentive."

She didn’t know his history.

"As everyone has said, not being able to get a hold of him,” Robinette says with frustration.

She goes on to say, “Eventually I started to have to file my own paperwork with the court, even though I was represented by him."

Robinette had no choice but to fire Matson after giving him $9,000 in fees, without seeing any action.

Robinette adds, "Just kind of bang my head saying, 'Why was I so stupid to believe him'?”

Even when Matson was representing Robinette in court, she says she was forced to file paperwork for her case.

"He should have been filing it,” Robinette adds. “They're seeing this, but again not doing anything."

Along with the paperwork, Robinette says that Matson was late to her court appearances which she discovered is an act of misconduct.

"Reading an order on request for review by a district court judge, I realized that the courts should have caught this," Robinette concludes.

She has taken matters into her own hands and is now in the process of filing a complaint with the North Dakota Judiciary Commission.

"These people that work in the law often act as though their above the law and the more people that do speak out about it,” Robinette goes on. “It's going to bring to light different things going on behind doors that shouldn't be."

Robinette's complaint, which all stems from hiring Matson, will be coming up on its third year with the New Year around the corner.

Her hope is that this doesn't happen to other people.

"I would like accountability on the judges in the courtroom,” Robinette says. “That they need to be accountable for seeing this misconduct and reporting it."

We reached out Matson and he did not get back to us.

We also reached out to the judge who overlooked the case, but said they cannot give an official statement due to the North Dakota Judiciary Code.

If you feel that you've fallen victim to an attorney or specifically Jesse Matson, you're encouraged to contact the North Dakota Disciplinary Board of Professional Trustees and file a complaint.