At the outset of a family law case, our clients review and sign fee agreements that explain how the billing process works between the client and our law firm. We are open and upfront with our clients about their retainer amount required, what the firm bills at an hourly rate, and all other aspects of the billing process. Still, we commonly receive questions from clients about the best method for keeping the costs down for their case. Here, we provide five helpful tips and recommendations on how to reduce your legal fees in a family law matter.
Tip 1: Review and Understand Your Fee Agreement
We walk through and explain the fee agreement to every client that retains our services. We make sure that our clients understand when payments are due, how their retainer needs to be replenished, how low their retainer can get, and other financial aspects of the fee agreement. Understanding the fee agreement is the first step to taking control of your case and establishing a cohesive relationship with your attorney. This can help reduce costs.
Tip 2: Take an Active Role in Your Case
We advise our clients to take an active role in their case if they want to keep their bills down. By this we mean, that clients should not just pay their attorneys and walk away and expect them to do everything in their case. Many of our clients keep their costs down by filling out certain documents like the Sworn Financial Statement and compiling texts and emails in an orderly manner. When clients keep clean and clear records, i.e., a calendar and or journal, it also helps compile data in a timely and efficient manner.
Tip 3: Work with the Opposing Party When Appropriate
We have many clients that can settle issues with the other party without any help from the attorney or law firm. We always recommend that our clients try to work out issues if they can. Sometimes the opposing party may be unwilling to communicate or they just do not want to settle an issue and then at that point we step in to help provide suggestions and litigate the matter if needed. Therefore, if you can work with the opposing party to shrink the number of issues in your case, you may be able to save on overall fees in your case.
Tip 4: Consolidate Emails, Texts, and Communications
A major way to cut down on legal fees and costs in your family law case is to compact your communications with your attorney. Instead of sending ten separate emails on ten separate issues, send one email with ten bullet point issues. This way the attorney is not charging you for every email they read. If you have a meeting with your lawyer, make sure you write down what you want to discuss so that you get the most value of your time.
Tip 5: Review Your Monthly Bill
Make sure to review your monthly bill supplied by your attorney. Look for items or information on the bill that seem out of place or excessive. If you have issues with your bill, schedule a time to speak with your attorney or firm administrator about it. If you have not received an invoice showing your monthly bill from your attorney, call them and request one. It is important to know that the attorney and law firm is charging you appropriately every month.
If you are looking for ways to reduce your legal fees in your family law case, please contact the attorneys at Springs Law Group LLC and schedule an initial consultation.