“Initial phone consultations are without obligation. Call me. I want to help.” — Michael Daymude

  Legal fees are based on the nature of the service. Some services, such as the drafting of a Will or Declaration of Trust, are usually rendered for a flat fee which I will quote during your initial consultation.

  Other services, such as the defense or prosecution of a lawsuit, do not lend themselves to flat fees due to unpredictability. It is impossible, when involved in a lawsuit, to determine in advance how much time and effort it will take to achieve your objective. Litigated matters, and services where a flat fee cannot be quoted, are generally handled on a straight hourly basis and an advance fee deposit (“retainer’) is required.

  Some types of matters lend themselves to a contingency fee. In a contingency fee agreement, I take a percentage of any recovery. If there is no recovery, I am owed no fees, except I am entitled to reimbursement for any advanced costs. I handle very few cases on a straight contingency basis. An exception would be personal injury claims where a contingency fee is the norm.

iStock_000015842159XSmall  In all cases, I strive to render value to my clients. I understand litigation can be unsettling due to the inability to predict cost or outcome. I am always willing to discuss alternative or modified fee arrangements which bring value to each of us — including blended hourly-contingent fees, lump sum monthly or less frequent retainers, and modified hourly-retainer rates.

  I consider alternative, non-standard fee arrangements to allow me to represent clients on terms they can afford. Possible terms vary by case. If you wish me to consider an alternative fee arrangement, be prepared to share your budgetary constraints with me. If you are unable to afford full representation, perhaps I can render effective limited-scope representation.

  Avoiding confusion regarding fees for services is important. Therefore, and to conform with California law, any agreement for legal services where fees and costs are anticipated to be $1,000, or less, will be confirmed via email and invoice. In all other cases, except in an emergency or when the situation makes a written fee agreement impractical, a written attorney-client agreement signed by all parties is required prior to me providing legal services.

  An initial 30-minute telephone consultation is without obligation and might include a review of emails and documents if you are able to forward documents to me in a single PDF file. Depending on the matter and the type of assistance you are seeking, I reserve the right, with advance notice, to charge a reasonable fee for document review, analysis, and consultation. For example, after my review of an initial email or voicemail, a pre-paid consultation fee might be required. Concerning hourly billing, I follow the court-approved practice: services are billed on an unbundled basis in .1-hour increments, rounded up to the next tenth. View a sample invoice. Further information regarding fees can also be found in the FAQ.

  Online payment is accepted through the Zelle® network (electronic funds transfer from your financial institution), PayPal, LawPay (eCheck, Visa®, MasterCard®, Discover®, American Express®), and your electronic payment service, or by mailed check, cashier’s check, or money order. Payment links are to the right and on the Client Portal page.

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