California Lawyer Rates

What are the rates of California lawyers, and how do they compute their fees?

HOURLY FEE SCHEDULE. Hourly rates depend on the circumstances surrounding the case and the skill of the lawyer. Under this arrangement, the client will take care of other minor point expenses such as fees incurred in transcripts, sheriff rates and filing. The client is also responsible for paying for the hours spent on legal work such as writing documents, making phone calls, attending meetings and conducting research.

CONTINGENCY FEES. Lawyers typically collect contingency fees in situations involving collection and personal injury. This payment scheme is not used in divorce, DUI (driving under the influence) and criminal situations. Here, the lawyer collects no fees unless the client recovers some money. The lawyer receives an amount that he and the client have agreed upon prior to litigation, typically ranging from 25 to 45 percent of the total amount received by the client.

The percentage the lawyer receives depends upon the following factors: amount of work the lawyer thinks he will provide for the case, the complexity of the case and the chance of recovering observe’ fees. In situations of popularity, the percentage can go higher. Contingency fees can be given prior to the case’s arrangement, and the client generally pays for other expenses such as deposition and filing fees. This kind of fee should be put in writing, bearing the signatures of both attorney and client.

FLAT RATE. With a flat rate, the lawyer renders a predetermined legal service to the client in exchange for a fixed sum. Examples of situations involving flat fee arrangements are will preparation and matters involving criminal defense. Should complications arise, this kind of payment scheme can be alternation.

PERCENTAGE FEES. In arrangements involving percentage fees, the payment is composed of a fixed percentage of the amount of estate or character that is unprotected to move. This is typically the case in estate administration and in the buying or selling of similarities.

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