Though we have the opinion that consumers today are not as willing to be billed under this method, we are willing to structure our billing arrangements this way, which consists of the following process:
We agree upon an hourly rate, and the client sends us a mutually agreeable retainer which we deposit into our trust account. Typically, we hold half of the deposit to be applied to our final bill, and the other half is used in the manner described below.
As we perform work on your matter, we track our time in increments of 1/5 on an hour, and bill you accordingly. For example, let's assume that our hourly rate is $250.00, and you call us with a question, and the call lasts twelve minutes, you will get a bill for $50.00.
As long as enough of your retainer exists, we would use those funds to satisfy the amount billed, which represents .2 of an hour along with a description of the service performed and we apply our hourly rate.
This is what we believe will be more standard for legal consumers in the future. Once we learn enough about your claim, we do our best to come up with one fee amount that will cover all the work we perform for you. Though you can call us, email us, and get prompt responses from us, we don't bill you for those encounters, as paying the flat fee "up front" means you have already paid for those things.
This arrangement calls for the client to send us an agreed upon amount at agreed upon intervals throughout the year. This could be thought of as partial flat fee payments, and we offer it to qualified clients.
We hope this brief explanation has been helpful, and even if you choose to hire another lawyer, we encourage you to ask your lawyer to consider billing arrangements that make as much sense for you as it does for your lawyer.