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Generally my fees area flat contracted fee, depending on the complexity of your individual case. An hourly fee is used if a flat fee is difficult to determine the foreseeable litigation. A variable maybe predetermined in your fee agreement on a stepped up basis.
Ancillary services and costs are extra; expert witnesses, service of process, transcripts, travel, appeals, etc. Some firms may give inexpensive quotes, even over the phone, without reviewing your personal litigation needs first. The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisement or who is the cheapest. Compare the value of the costs of your representation with the qualifications of your attorney. Call me for a free personal review of your case before deciding.
Steps to Evaluate Your Personal Case Objectives
The fee for representation will be based upon objective criteria, considering your personal priorities and the complexity of the expected litigation depending on which of the following steps that are believed to be reasonably necessary to seek your realistic desired outcome:
INVESTIGATIVE STAGE: Is it appropriate to present evidence of lack of guilt to the police or prosecutor prior to arrest or formal charges filed? It is critical that you know your rights and that your attorney may exercise them for you before you compromise your position.
CHARGE DECISION: Is there information that would be helpful to share with the police or prosecutor as to the proper initial arrest or formal charge? This may even result in no charges filed.
BOND: If not too late, often your bond can be set much lower than he standard or set rate if you are not at high risk of flight. This may save you enough money to pay your legal fees. You may even qualify to be released with no bond.
DIVERSION OR EARLY PLEA: Are there early options that may benefit you and save you money and despair? For many, there are pre-trial intervention options to avoid a conviction, or an early plea bargain may suit your situation.
DISCOVERY: Learning the evidence against you is critical to your decision process to go to trial or not.
TRIAL CONFERENCES: It may not be necessary for you to miss work to attend acourt appearances as your lawyer may appear on your behalf.
PRE-TRIAL MOTIONS: You may be able to get your case dropped or evidence suppressed or limited prior to trial which can better assess your decision to proceed to trial or seek an alternate resolution.
AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES: An expert criminal trial lawyer is skilled atevaluating matters that may be legal roadblocks to prevent a conviction.
PLEA BARGAINING: This may help you with your decision to "fish or cut bait."
TRIAL BY THE COURT OR JURY: This is the ultimate test of whether you were glad that you chose an expert criminal trial lawyer with sufficient trial experience in your type of case.
SEALING OR EXPUNCTION: If you were successful in getting your charges not filed, diverted, dismissed, or adjudication withheld, you may qualify in getting the record of your arrest or disposition sealed from view or destroyed.
POST-CONVICTION RELIEF: If you had a prior lawyer, other than myself, who made fundamental errors in your representation or there were trial or litigation errors by the judge, prosecutor or police you may still have a legal remedy.
APPEAL: I am very experienced in this litigation of last resort.
Your legal fee will generally be less according to the earlier step that your case can be resolved, depending on our agreement prior to my representation.