How are fees determined?
Either by value – how much value did the client get from the work that was done; or hourly – a per hour charge for work that lends itself to being charged on that basis.
A legal fee should be fair. Fairness is a subjective term. To me, it involves setting a price for the accumulated knowledge and experience I bring to each client. I express this in the fee that I quote and encourage clients to speak up if they don’t feel that a fair price has been charged when all is said and done.
What kind of services are charged?
A lawyer charges for services rendered. While services may equate to documents in a client’s mind, the real service is the knowledge and experience that leads an attorney to advise you that a particular document, deed or financial step should be part of your plan. Every individual gets attention based on his or her own facts and concerns.
Can you estimate the cost?
Fees and the payment agreement are discussed in advance. Unless otherwise agreed upon in advance, my hourly rates begin at $350.
In many instances, I may charge a flat fee based upon the complexity and value of the planning that is needed. More complex cases will be more expensive, so clarity of purpose is important.
Some cost factors are out of our control – behavior of other parties and lawyers, court costs and other fees.
What will initial billing look like?
Initial retainer will be required, as well as any court costs (if applicable).
There are no charges for copies or postage; however, in most instances overnight mail costs will be added to the final bill.
If an hourly rate is being charged, e-mails will be charged at that hourly rate unless the attorney decides that the time and nature of inquiry involved don’t warrant a fee. To be safe – assume there will be a charge.
My goal is fairness. Fairness does not mean low cost or high fees; it means an appropriate fee as determined under the circumstances.
Credit cards and checks accepted