How Much Will It Cost?

There are some types of cases that must be pursued or defended no matter what the cost.  In the vast majority of cases, though, it is wise to consider the cost of one’s various options before deciding how to proceed.  If the cost of proceeding or defending a lawsuit exceeds the economic benefit of victory, unless the issue is one of principle that cannot be compromised, one should carefully consider the economic realities in deciding how to go forward.

Lawyers typically charge for their services in one of three ways:

  1. On the basis of an hourly rate and the time expended by the lawyer in the case;
  2. On a fixed-fee basis; or
  3. On a contingent fee basis, where the lawyer receives a percentage of whatever is recovered in the matter, and no fee if the case is lost.

There are hybrid arrangements combining these approaches to fee setting as well.

The type of fee arrangement that is best suited for your case depends on a number of factors, including the complexity of the case, the likelihood of success, the collectability of any damages awarded to you, and a host of other factors.  No matter what type of fee arrangement is agreed upon between client and lawyer, one thing is true: There should be a clear understanding between the client and the lawyer of how the fee is to be determined.

Sometimes, a lawyer may require payment of a sum of money, called a retainer, at the time the lawyer is engaged to perform services.  There are different types of retainers (i.e., refundable, nonrefundable, etc.) that may be required in particular circumstances.  Again, a clear understanding should exist between the lawyer and the client concerning the nature and amount of any retainer that is required.

We would be happy to consult with you without obligation to discuss the cost of any legal matter you are contemplating or in which you are involved.  Please contact us to arrange a discussion of this important topic.