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Local Electrician Trying to Barter His Services for a Divorce Lawyer

By Nicholas Rizzi | October 16, 2015 1:43pm | Updated on October 19, 2015 9:01am

After a Staten Island electrician's divorce fund ran out of juice, he turned to bartering to power it back up.

Anthony Davino posted signs around courthouses offering to trade his skills as an electrician in exchange for legal representation in his divorce case, after he ran out of money to pay his lawyer.

"I'm pretty much dead in the water," Davino, 49, said. "The only thing I have left is my skill and there's got to be a lawyer who I can barter my services with." 

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When his second lawyer quit after asking for $30,000 more to continue, Davino couldn't pay and was given a month to find a new lawyer before his last six court dates.

So Davino posted 300 to 400 fliers on sign posts and parking meters around Staten Island and Brooklyn courthouses, offering to trade his services for the representation of a lawyer.

"I'm old school, I just took to the streets," Davino said.

He plans on putting up fliers in Manhattan soon and already had one lawyer call to potentially take him up on the offer.

And interested lawyers need not worry about Davino's credentials: he's been licensed in New York, New Jersey and Suffolk county since 2006 and has been in the business for about 20 years.

"I could do, soup to nuts, the whole wiring of the house," Davino, who owns A. Davino Electrical Contracting, said. "This is my last ditch effort to get this representation."

Davino has been involved in a "contentious" divorce since he said he caught his wife cheating. He has spent nearly $200,000 on lawyers, alimony and child support while he fights for custody of his 11-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son, he said.

Davino said he's been "bled dry" by the case and tried to settle with his ex-wife numerous times to no avail. He said he's finally nearing the finish line and hopes he can convince a lawyer to take on the late case.

"Hopefully I get a couple of bites," he said. "It's tough to take on a case, especially towards the end."