OUR FIXED FEES & FLEXIBLE COSTING METHODS
KEY PRICING FACTS
- We have a range of pricing and cost models.
- We are happy to tailor our pricing models for your specific requirements.
- You may also arrange to pay by installments – when appropriate.
- We will try and use a FIXED FEE MODEL whenever possible.
- We will INVOICE YOU IN STAGES, as the work is being completed. You will not pay upfront or pay in advance.
- We do not like per hour charging models to avoid unpleasant surprises and out of control pricing shocks for our clients.
- We are very commercial and we will strive to better most/all other firms in terms of costs, quality and service.
- We do act pro-bono in some cases, to right injustices.
Why fixed fees may be the best approach for clients
Clearly, per hour charge rates are ineffective and inefficient from a whole range of perspectives.
In terms of time costing, there is no connection between the fees charged and the value of the work done.
From the client’s perspective, it is uncontrollable, unpleasant and created shocks and surprises.
We strive to give to our client’s certainty as to their legal expenditure and we approach the question of pricing with the client’s specific needs and constraints in mind.
Fixed fees also prevent padding of bills on client matters and excessive writing back and forth to clients and/or opposing solicitors just to build up the hours and fees.
Fixed fees incentivise the lawyer to get your job done – and to get it done efficiently.
THE LEGAL PROFESSION ACT (NSW) AND CHARGING MODELS
Under the Legal Profession Act 2004 (NSW), solicitors are entitled to charge fees which are fair and reasonable. Some areas of the law are regulated by fee scales, for example, grant of probate and some workers compensation claims. In most areas of the law, costs may be calculated in any of the following ways:
- a fixed amount
- an hourly rate
- an hourly rate with a ceiling on the maximum amount
- no win, no pay
- a method of charging as negotiated to suit the circumstances.
In addition to our fees, we will charge you for expenses incurred on your behalf, for example, barrister’s fees or court fees.
We will not and cannot charge you for: preparing a costs agreement, making disclosures to you, or preparing your bill.
FIXED AND CAPPED FEES
We will quote and stick to a fixed fee for any transaction, litigation or other piece of legal work at your request. Alternatively, we will quote a capped fee which we will not exceed.
For many simple or family law matters we will provide a fixed fee for that service.
WHAT IS ‘NO WIN, NO PAY’?
This is an agreement, where you pay us only if there is a successful outcome, and this is called a ‘Conditional Costs Agreement’. This written agreement will typically define what a successful outcome is.
We do not and cannot charge on a ‘no win, no pay’ basis in criminal or family law cases.
A Conditional Costs Agreement may require you to pay, if your case is successful, an additional amount of costs. This extra amount can be up to 25% of the costs, but cannot be a proportion of, or vary according to, the amount recovered.
The agreement may exclude disbursements and out-of-pocket expenses which you may have to pay regardless of the outcome of the case.
NB: If you lose your case under a Conditional Costs Agreement you may have to pay the costs of the other party or parties to the proceedings. These are called party-party costs.
A fixed periodic fee (usually monthly) under either a global retainer covering all your legal work or a specific retainer covering identified of the work.
Litigation in the retainer may be included on a case by case basis.
The retainer fee has no carve-outs or exclusions. It is calculated to equate to the average value of the work over a long period, so as to smooth out the peaks and troughs and give you budgeting certainty.
The retainer fee is reviewed regularly to ensure that it is pitched at a fair level in relation to the volume or work.
LITIGATION – ALTERNATIVES TO TIME-COSTING
We can charge a fixed monthly retainer during the preparation phase of the litigation (i.e. up to but not including the hearing). This is calculated by working out the likely total costs and spreading that out over the period that we estimate it is likely to take before the hearing occurs. You will not be charged at all during those months where nothing occurs (i.e. awaiting a trail date).
We then charge a separate fixed fee per day during the hearing itself. We do this because the work involved during a hearing is substantially greater and more intensely concentrated than during the preparation phase; and because most cases actually settle before they go to hearing. This way, we protect you from paying for the most expensive aspect (the hearing) if we help you to achieve an earlier settlement.
Fixed fee litigation
We charge a fixed fee for the litigation matter, which is payable regardless of the outcome. This proceed to a hearing. This provides certainty as to cost.may be attractive in cases where there is a high likelihood that the other side will definitely
Event costed-stage by stage litigation
We will charge fixed fees for specified stages of the litigation matter as it progresses (eg preparing pleadings, discovery, evidence, hearing).
No win- no pay
Up to 25% as per the above in non-criminal non family law situations.