How Much Will The Legal Fees Be?
We believe that legal fees should not be a mystery, and that the fee must
fairly represent the value of the work which is being done for our clients in
the matters which are important to them.
There are two basic ways in which we get paid for legal services. The first
is called the "hourly plan" in which the client pays for the amount
of time our attorneys and legal assistants work on the client's case. The hourly
rate varies depending upon the nature of the case and who is doing the work.
On the hourly plan the client receives a detailed descriptive statement once
a month outlining the work done, the amount of time spent, and the charge for
On the hourly plan the client will usually be asked for an initial retainer.
The amount will vary depending upon the nature of the case.
The second method is known as the "contingent fee plan." Under this
plan the client pays a fee which is based upon the results obtained. The fee
is a percentage of the total amount recovered for the client, whether by way
of settlement or by obtaining a judgment after arbitration or trial of the case.
If there is no recovery, for any reason, then the client owes us no attorneys'
fees. The exact percentage varies, depending upon the nature of the case.
Remember, on the contingent fee plan we are paid only if and when the client
receives payment on the case. This means that if there is no recovery, for any
reason, the client owes us no fee.
Most of our personal injury clients choose the contingent fee plan.
In some cases we do incur out-of-pocket expenses for things such as court filing
fees, witness fees, and deposition transcripts. By law, these costs are the
client's responsibility and may be paid at the time they are incurred or, in
appropriate cases, taken out of the ultimate settlement.
We're glad to discuss our fees openly at any time. In fact, our fees will be
explained in writing and signed by both the client and the attorney right in
the beginning. Should you have questions at any time, we're glad to answer them.