Our estate lawyer fees for handling probate, estate and trust administration, legal disputes and litigation depend on the type and nature of your matter and the attorneys handling your case.
- Initial Consultations: We generally charge $400 for initial consultations, which typically last approximately one hour. If you live outside the Phoenix metropolitan area, we will usually handle the initial consultation by telephone conference. You can pay the initial consultation fee by cash, check, credit card, or debit card.
After the initial consultation, we offer flexible fee arrangements that can fit each client’s needs. Although we are open to discussing other arrangements, the possible fee arrangements include the following:
Hourly Fees: An hourly fee arrangement is the most common or typical fee structure for probate, estate and trust cases. Under an hourly fee arrangement, you simply pay us at our hourly rates – currently ranging from $250 to $475 per hour, depending on the attorney providing the service, for the actual amount of time spent on your matter by the attorney. Depending on the matter, we may also assign tasks to one of our paralegals for which we typically charge $175 per hour. We bill for our time in increments of one-tenth of one hour (6 minutes). We send your our detailed invoices monthly.
Flat Fee: In a flat fee, you pay us one pre-set amount for a given project, which may or may not include costs. For example, for a flat fee, we may evaluate the interpretation or meaning of a provision in a will and provide advice to you so that you can make a decision on whether the will is valid or whether to challenge the will. We also typically offer to handle uncontested appointments of personal representatives, guardians and/or conservators for a flat fee (usually no more than $3,000). If the matter becomes contested, we would then charge hourly.
Contingency Fee: Under a contingency fee arrangement, we receive a percentage of the total amount of any recovery by you (before any costs are deducted) and no fee if there is no recovery. Depending on the matter, the firm may advance costs (such as filing fees, deposition costs, expert witness fees). For example, if you want to challenge a will or trust or amendment to a will or a trust and you stand to recover money if you win, we may consider handling your case on a contingency fee basis. We would receive a percentage of the amount of money or other assets you win. Or, if you have a claim against a third-party for breach of contract or exploitation of your loved one, we may take your case on a contingency fee.
Mixed/Hybrid Fees: In a mixed or hybrid fee structure, we receive a reduced hourly fee or a flat fee, plus a reduced contingency fee.
We typically require an advance against fees (commonly referred to as a “retainer”). The amount of the advance depends on the nature and scope of your legal matter and the services that we expect to provide. If your matter is concluded before the advance is used up, we refund the unused balance to you.
Note: Costs are different and usually treated separate from fees. Costs may include court filing fees, expert witness charges and depositions, among other things. Unlike some law firms, we do not charge for postage, faxes, and small copying or scanning jobs.
Contact us to learn more about our fee arrangements.