I just sent the following letter to the judge, with copies to my ex-wife and her lawyer.
Dear Judge Kelly:
This is in response to Ms. Gray's Sept. 12 letter. I have paid her the $20,000, and I do not believe that I owe her any more. I complied with the order as I understood it, and I would like to make these points:
1. I specifically asked you during the May 13 hearing whether the $20,000 includes the $6,500 that I already paid. My recollection is that you nodded your head and said yes. I am sorry that I didn't make the record clearer, but it seemed clear to me at the time.
2. Ms. Gray is attempting to double-bill me. She went into court on May 13 with a last-minute and poorly documented claim that she had accumulated $40,452.01 in billings so far in the case. I believe that the $40,000 included everything, including billings that she had previously presented, of which I was ordered to pay (and did pay) $6,500.
3. Her argument doesn't even make any sense. If she had gotten the entire $40,000 that she was requesting, then surely I would have been credited with the $6,500 that I already paid towards those bills. It appears that you just divided her request in half, and it seems logical that I would still get credit for what I paid.
4. My ex-wife is a lawyer. I am not even using a lawyer, except for a couple of minor out-of-court consultations. I do not believe that there is any precedent for an unrepresented non-lawyer paying the legal fees of a licensed attorney in a routine divorce.
5. Ms. Gray should be happy to get the $20,000, when all she has accomplished has been to cause misery to our kids and to separate them from a perfectly fit father for a year.