Consultation And Fees
Potential clients who consider scheduling a consultation with us usually ask the following questions which we lay out here together with the answers.
Q: Do you handle cases like mine?
A: Each case is different, but we encourage you to browse through our areas of practice and see what cases we handle. We may decline to accept a particular case for many reasons, but we can still help you if you call to ask.
Q: Do you charge for your consultation?
A: We do. Our consultation fee at this time is $500.00. We will waive it if you decide to hire us. The consultation fee is not hourly, it is a flat fee. Although an average consultation lasts about an hour, we will give you all the time you need.
Q: Why do you charge consultation fees if other lawyers offer “free consultations”?
A: ? ? There are several reasons why we charge consultation fees and they are all simple.
- As lawyers, the only thing we have to sell is our time and our advice. This is simply what we do for a living. You will rarely find a doctor offering free consultations. An attorney who values his or her time also has respect for client’s time.
- We receive a huge amount of calls each month from people who seek our advice. If we were to meet with people who want to discuss their cases with us for free, we would literally spend 5 to 6 hours each day just answering questions. This means that all this time we are unable to work on other cases.
- While other attorneys offer free consultations to generate more business, many of them will have paralegals meet with clients to screen them out while the attorney will spend very little time with the client and even then only to quote a fee. At our office you will meet with an experienced attorney personally. Our consultation is more than a screening process or a fee quote. We don’t offer estimates. Instead, you will receive real value because we will analyze your case and explain to you the possible options, the risks involved and the benefits to be had. We will explain to you what we can do and how we will do it.
- We believe, like most people, that you get what you pay for. What you want from a legal consultation is not just to know what the fees will be. What you expect is answers to your questions. You want a professional to analyze your case and give you an honest answer. Proper analysis requires us to listen to you, review the documents, and discuss the issues at depth. That takes time during which you receive a very personal attention to your matter. You cannot expect any quality during a 15 minutes free consultation or even from a longer free consultation where the word “free” is used as a mantra to attract more prospective clients.
Q: I’m not sure if I need your services, I only have a small question. Do I have to pay for consultation?
A: Before you schedule a consultation with an attorney, you will speak with one of our staff members who will hear you out and tell you if you have an issue that requires a consultation with an attorney. You will not be charged to tell your story to us and we will provide you with valuable free information on the phone. You are also welcome to browse through our free Q&A legal guides. Chances are you will find the answer to your question there. Although we do encourage prospective clients to book consultations, each day we explain to new callers that there is no need in it. However, if you decide to come in to meet with one of our attorneys, we will charge you a consultation fee.
Q: I already have a lawyer but want a second opinion
A: Many criminal defense clients are faced with difficult choices. If you feel more comfortable running your case by us, please call us to set up a meeting.
Q: How much do you charge?
A: This really depends on the case. Some cases will only take several hours of work while others will take much more time to get a favorable outcome and will be significantly more expensive.
Q: Do you offer flat fees or hourly fees?
A: Depending on the case we can offer you either a fixed flat fee (meaning that all legal work will be covered by it and there will be no more discussion of money) or hourly fees (not used often). Sometimes we will use a combination of flat and hourly fee structures.
Q: Do you accept credit cards?
A: Yes we do.
Q: How about payment plans?
A: We do offer payment plans in some cases. Usually these are more complex cases that take longer to complete and require higher fees.
Q: I work during the week. Can you meet me on a weekend?
A: We can always accommodate you and meet with you early in the morning, later in the evening, or even on a weekend.
Q: I live outside of NYC. Can I schedule a phone consultation?
A: Absolutely. You can call us to schedule a phone consultation. We will process your credit card payment over the phone.
Q: So, I would like to hire you, how does that work?
A: We make this process as easy as possible. We encourage you to pick up your phone and book a consultation. At the end of your consultation we will give you a quote and ask you to sign a retainer agreement. The retainer agreement is a contract between you and our firm, which explains our obligations in very simple terms. You will have to make a payment at that time and we will start working on your case immediately.
Q: Do I have to pay the whole fee upfront?
A: In most cases you will be expected to make a full payment before we start working on your case unless we have some other arrangement.
Q: I need an interpreter ? what languages do you speak?
A: We speak Mandarin, Cantonese, Fujianese, Korean, Spanish, Russian, and French.