THE FLAT RATE, AFFORDABLE FEE
Let's be frank about matters. Most clients going through a divorce are facing significant emotional and financial issues. Two living separately is more expensive then living together. As financial pressures mount, many clients are extremely concerned about how much the legal process is going to cost.
Most attorneys charge a standard hourly rate in family law matters. While this may provide security for the attorney who does not wish to spend time working on matters for which he or she will not be compensated, it creates anxiety for the client because they have no certainty as to how much their representation is going to cost. At $300 an hour, which many attorneys charge, a $2,000 bill can rapidly escalate to a $5,000 bill.
I find my clients are much more comfortable with knowing what their fee is likely to be. Fortunately, the legal process has developed so that I can provide that certainty in most cases. Many family law matters are uncontested. If your case is uncontested, I can provide my services at a reasonable, fixed fee. For those cases that are contested, our courts typically require the parties to attend mediation before the expensive discovery process takes place. The good news is most cases are resolved during the mediation process, so even in contested cases, I can reasonably project how much time and effort I will have to expend to get a case through mediation. Consequently I have developed a Fixed Fee Structure that I can use in most family law matters. Listed below are the fixed fee arrangements I can typically charge.
FIXED FEE STRUCTURE: UNCONTESTED DIVORCE
$950.00 This fee applies when the parties have resolved all the marital issues between them prior to filing for divorce. Even in uncontested cases, there is a considerable amount of work that must be done to finalize the divorce. Included in the fee is preparation of the petition for dissolution, preparation of an answer by the spouse consenting to the petition, preparation of the financial affidavits and residency affidavits, preparation of the final Judgement of Dissolution and attendance at the final hearing for dissolution of marriage.
CONTESTED DIVORCE THROUGH THE MEDIATION PROCESS $1,950.00
In most cases, the parties will not be able to agree on all aspects of the dissolution of marriage. If children are involved there are frequently issues relating to sharing the parental responsibility and the amount of child support that should be paid. In long-term marriages, there are frequently issues as to whether alimony should be provided to one spouse and, if so, how much. Lastly, there are often issues relating to dividing up the marital property. When issues are contested the divorce proceeding are obviously more complicated and require more effort on the part of the attorneys and their clients to reach a resolution. As discussed above, our courts generally require the parties in a contested case to submit to mediation in an effort to resolve these disputes. Fortunately, most cases can be resolved through this mediation process. Through my years of practice, I have developed an appreciation for how much time and effort it takes me to take a contested divorce proceeding from initiation to mediation. Consequently, in most cases, I will be able to charge my client a fixed fee of $1,950.00 to represent them from either the filing of the petition or the answering of the petition through the conclusion of mediation.
There are, unfortunately, some cases where there are so many issues in dispute, or the disputes are too complex to allow for me to proceed at this fixed price. I do, however, provide a free consultation to all clients with a disputed matter so that I can determine if I can provide services at the fee listed above.
Call me at 239-430-1126 to schedule your consultation.
2375 Tamiami Trail N. Naples, FL 34103 CALL: 239 430 1126 Fax: 239 244 9275 Email
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