Explanation of Legal Fees used by the Ivie Law Firm
Attorney fees are based on factors such as the degree of difficulty of a particular task, the amount of time that will be involved, the cost benefit to the client of the task being provided and the cost of doing business. The cost of doing business, also called overhead, usually includes rent, equipment, salaries and the cost of maintaining professional skills and education. These costs typically comprise 35 to 50 percent of the legal fees that are charged by other firms.
The Ivie Law Firm, by the nature of its size and by intentional efforts to keep operating expenses at a minimum, is often able to provide legal services at a reduced cost when compared to other law firms.
There are several different types of fees that may be used in determining how much a legal service will cost a particular client and how the fee is to be paid.
Consultation Fee – Many legal problems are complicated. As a result, it may require a face to face discussion of the details and facts that have caused a potential client to seek legal help before an attorney can determine what if any legal remedy may be available. In such circumstances a potential client will be charged a consultation fee to compensate the attorney for time spent in familiarizing himself with the important details. A potential client can decrease the likelihood of incurring this fee if well prepared for the initial consultation. The potential client should prepare a written statement of the problem containing all facts – both good and bad – and what has been done already to try and remedy the problem.
Fixed Fee – In cases where the legal services are transactional in nature, for example drafting and filing organizational and governing documents, negotiating, drafting or reviewing contracts, or where representation is limited, for example advocating for an expunction of a criminal record, the cost can often be determined in advance. This is particularly helpful for small businesses, nonprofits and churches that need to predict and budget for the cost of legal services.
Hourly Fee – When the extent of the work required is not as readily predictable, clients will be charged an hourly rate for the services provided. Even in such cases, the firm will attempt to provide an estimate or range of potential cost and complications that may arise. Clients will receive an itemized accounting of all time expended on a particular case. The firm’s hourly fee is less than that charged by other attorneys or firms because of the efforts to reduce overhead costs. Further, all work performed on a case by the firm is provided by a licensed attorney.
Contingency Fee – In some litigation cases, for example cases involving personal injury or property damage, the firm may agree to accept a percentage of any money recovered as a fee for the legal services. The legal fees owed to the attorney will not be paid unless and until the client receives compensation through settlement or judgment. In these cases, whether the case results in a recovery or not, the client will pay for all other legal costs associated with the case such as filing fees and the cost of expert consultations and may need to provide these costs in advance. If the firm fronts these costs for the client during the litigation process, they will be deducted along with the legal fees from any recovery before the remaining balance is given to the client.