The Ruthenberg-Marshall Law Firm offers flat fees in both uncontested and contested cases. No matter how complex or contentious your matter, you will be given a flat fee quote at your consult.
Most family law firms ask for a retainer and charge you at hourly rates without telling you how much the total fees will be or what you will pay per month. This adds stress to the already demanding situation of litigating a family law case.
Benefits of Flat Fees
With flat fees, clients know what fees to expect and can plan accordingly. Clients know from the beginning how much their case will cost and whether or not they can afford to hire an attorney. With traditional billing, clients often run out of money during their case and then the attorney stops representing them. This is an unpleasant way to end a professional relationship for both the client and the attorney. Flat fees help avoid this issue.
Flat fees also help better align goals and expectations in attorney-client relationships. With traditional hourly billing, clients often feel like their attorney is driving up hours just to increase the cost — even if the attorney is being completely ethical in her billing. With flat fees, clients know what they are paying regardless of how many hours the attorney puts into their matter.
Attorneys are also incentivized to work more efficiently in flat fee matters, which helps cases keep moving forward through the sometimes slow justice system and helps clients get a resolution more quickly.
How Flat Fees Work
Flat fees are still custom fees based on the facts of your individual case. Not every case of a given case type will have the same fee. We use the information learned in the intake and consultation process to calculate a fee specific to your legal matter. Some family law attorneys will tell you that it is impossible to predict the cost of a family law case at the beginning. For hourly attorneys, this is true. But with flat fees, it is possible to predict the cost of a case. Admittedly, it takes significant effort based on experience in the field to build a model that appropriately calculates flat fees in all contested cases. Most attorneys are not willing to take the time to figure out an appropriate flat fee pricing model.
At The Ruthenberg-Marshall Law Firm, we have gone to the effort of building a flat fee model because we believe it is what our clients deserve.
Each client receives a custom flat fee quote at their consult. For smaller cases and uncontested cases, we charge one flat fee for the entire matter. For more complex cases, the fee is broken down into four separate flat fees based on case stages:
1) Case Initiation and Mediation
2) Temporary Hearing
4) Final Trial or Late Settlement.
These stages do not always occur in the order listed, and most cases will not go through all four stages. Clients only pay for the stages that their case goes through — if they settle before the next stage, their case concludes, and no more fees are due. The client will receive a quote for the fee for each case stage at the end of their consult so they know what to expect if their case goes to trial.
This method allows most clients to conclude their case for a much lower cost but still gives predictability to clients whose cases take longer to resolve.
For more information about our flat fees rates, or to schedule a family law consultation, click here.