As a Colorado Springs Family Law Lawyer, one of the questions that I am most often asked is, “How much will my case cost?”. The answer that I give is, “it depends”. It depends on many different factors, some you will have control over and some you will not.
The Fee Agreement: The first step in understanding how much your divorce or child custody case is going to cost is to review and understand your fee agreement with your lawyer. As a best practice, a member of our staff at Springs Law Group always sits down with our new clients and walks through the fee agreement and answers any questions they may have. It is important that you understand what the initial retainer is and the hourly rates of the attorney and paralegal are. Also, make sure you read your fee agreement and understand costs for emails and phone calls to the attorney and/or paralegal. These small costs can add up quickly. Further, you have to know what benchmarks the law firm has regarding replenishing your retainer. Overall, it is important to know when money is due to the law firm in order for them to keep working.
Do The Work: A case is only as expensive as you let it become. If you choose to be an involved participant in your family law case, then you will reduce the costs and legal fees of your case. One piece of advice is to talk to your family law attorney and ask them what you can do in your case to help reduce costs. For example, if a law firm has to make requests for bank statement from your bank account, it will cost you much more than if you just went directly to the bank to ask for the bank records yourself.
The Uncontrollables: Sometimes I find that there are certain costs outside of my client’s control in their divorce or child custody. The number one area are the actions of the opposing party. If an opposing party decides to file motions and fill the case with conflict then the case will drag out for a long period of time and cost will certainly rise. It is important to have your finger on the pulse of the case and know how difficult the opposing party will be in your case.
As a matter of practice, I tell my clients that I cannot and will not predict the total costs of their case as there are too many variables involved. However, if clients are educated on the terms of the fee agreement, choose to do some of the work themselves, and understand the areas they cannot control then they will have a better idea of costs.
If you are looking to for a Family Law Firm that is dedicated to the client and open and honest about fees and costs, reach out to Springs Law Group. The lawyers and staff at Springs Law Group are here for you. Please call us at (719) 421-7141 or contact us to schedule a consultation.