There may be various expenses that must be paid to others in order to prepare your legal matter above and beyond legal fees. Filing fees; payments to obtain necessary reports or copies of documents; payments to employ court reporters for depositions; or to obtain licenses or permits from state or federal authorities. Usually these charges will be in direct proportion to the complexity of the case involved. The easier your matter is to solve, the less these costs will ordinarily be.
At the start of your legal matter, I will try to estimate for you the amount of out-of-pocket expenses which might be incurred on by you. I will discuss with you whether or when you will be required pay these expenditures to further your case.
To the extent that I reasonably can, I will inform you what your fee will be on your first visit. I always encourage a frank, open discussion about my fees with each client. In general, Lawyers are paid under various fee arrangements:
Hourly fee: On an hourly fee basis, fees are based on an hourly rate for services rendered. A detailed, itemized bill will be given to you showing all work done on your case. This explanation may come monthly or at the end of your case, whichever way you choose to be billed. Unless otherwise agreed, the hourly fee basis will be the presumed fee arrangement.
Flat fee: With a flat fee, your legal fee is an set amount for and agreed upon services. No accounting is necessary.
Contingency fee: On contingency, the legal fees will be based on any amount of recovery I recover for; no recovery, no fee. You may have the option of choosing this plan in lieu of hourly charges. Not all cases qualify for the contingency basis, but I will tell you if yours does.
A pre-payment is often required in order to begin to process your matter and you will be kept advised as to how that pre-payment is being used. Bills will be sent to you periodically showing your charges and payments. Certain cases may also have a minimum fee. The amount of services required, is not always within our control. Sometimes, services are directly related to an opposing party’s action or inaction.
Ask. I always want you to ask. Sometimes I am required to be out of the office, to we meet with other clients, complete research, review documents, or prepare contracts, briefs or pleadings. For the most efficient and quickest response please contact me by email. I’ll contact you as quickly as possible regarding your concerns or issues.
I will always do everything possible to keep you informed when anything important happens, to respond to your questions in a reasonable time, and to inform you when your presence is required, either in my office or in court. It’s important to realize, though, that legal matters can take a long time. During that time, a lot of behind-the-scenes work is being completed so that no detail is overlooked.
You will receive thorough and careful consideration, experienced and confident counsel, and personal attention.
When in doubt, ask. No questions as to your rights, duties or obligations should go unanswered because you didn’t know if you should call. Fees for these different matters will be charged in accordance with my regular practice.
All office visits are by appointment only. I encourage each of my clients to schedule meetings with me during regular business hours. From time to time you may request that I meet you in the evening if the matter cannot wait. While I do not encourage these special visits, I may arrange them where absolutely necessary. These special visits may incur surcharges, please avoid them wherever possible.
If you are disabled, or otherwise unable to come to my office, I can arrange to meet with you in your home, hospital or care facility.