Seeking legal counsel can be very expensive. Here at the Drake Law Firm, we do not use a flat fee system. Instead, we implement hourly billing. However, it can be beneficial for you as a future client to understand the various ways in which attorneys and law firms charge for their services.
What is a Flat Fee?
A flat fee occurs when an attorney charges one set fee for their services. This is most common for routine matters such as creating a will, a pre-nuptial agreement, or uncontested divorce. The way it works is that instead of being charged for the amount of time an attorney spends on your case, you are charged a flat fee up front for the service. Some law firms may offer flat fee billing for certain services and hourly billing for others.
Pros of a Flat Fee Attorney
- Predictable expenses
- A set amount is agreed upon and paid upfront.
- Potentially quicker services
- Typically, attorneys charge a flat fee for very straightforward or routine services which can equate to faster turnaround.
Cons of a Flat Fee Attorney
- Possible overpayment
- If an attorney finishes your case very quickly, it might be more expensive as a flat fee versus if an hourly fee attorney quickly finished the work and billed you less.
- Not every case is suitable for a flat fee
- It is difficult to accept flat fees for certain types of cases so it may be hard to find a flat fee attorney.
There are many ways an attorney or law firm can charge for their services including flat fee, hourly billing, or contingency fees. There is not a perfect “one size fits all” approach and each client may have their own preference on the way they are charged for legal fees.