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Frustrated former clients of no-show Jacksonville attorney speak out

First Coast News talked to two former clients of Benjamin Buck who say his unprofessional manner wreaked havoc on their lives.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Frustrated clients are speaking out about no-show lawyer Benjamin Buck.

As First Coast News was the first to report, the Jacksonville attorney is currently under investigation by the Florida Bar after failing to show up for court, leaving paying clients without representation.

Carl Gutzmer hired Buck to represent him in a civil case against St. Johns County back in 2021.

When he lost the case, Gutzmer said he filed a complaint with the Florida Bar against Buck for ineffective counsel.

“I had to borrow off my wife’s pension,” Gutzmer said. “And I gave him $10,000 to cover the doctors, the police experts and the medical records.”

Gutzmer said those experts never showed up to testify in court. Then in December 2021, Buck failed to show up to a hearing in the case.

Gutzmer said he’s out $9000 now because of Buck.

“In my case, this was open and shut,” Gutzmer said. “This was not something that needed to take eight months.”

Buck didn’t return multiple calls and emails, but in a written response to the Florida Bar’s questions about the case, Buck dismissed the allegations, saying Gutzmer actually owes him money.

Teneacha McGrady, who hired Buck when her husband a life prison sentence, expresses similar frustration.

“There was no justice served, and it was because of Ben,” McGrady said.

She said Buck stopped showing up for meetings and was impossible to reach.

“At that point, we were so knee-deep in, and so much money in,” McGrady said. “We didn’t even have time to prepare or to find another attorney.”

She was glad to hear about the bar investigation.

Like had we had a better attorney, then I think things would have been a lot different,” McGrady said.

Buck is still listed as a member in Good Standing and eligible to practice law on the Florida State Bar’s website. However, bar officials confirmed he’s under investigation.

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