We are excited to announce new forms of payment for our domestic relations, protection order and probate litigation clients: predictable pricing. Predictable pricing allows you to have a better sense of your legal fees so you can plan your budget, picking and choosing what you need. This pricing model is very similar to our current unbundled pricing model because you choose what you want and pay in advance.
Here are the payment options under predictable pricing:
Phase Pricing: Imagine limiting most of the uncertainty of your upcoming litigation expenses. Welcome phase pricing, which makes this happen.
Family law and probate litigation proceedings follow somewhat predictable patterns and go through set phases. For example, in divorce, there are generally initial pleadings, disclosures and discovery, initial status conference, temporary orders, mediation, final documents, permanent orders, post decree follow up. We can generally estimate the cost of each phase absent predictable and unpredictable contingencies. We can even estimate the predictable contingencies to give you a sense of their anticipated cost if they happen (see “Known Unknowns” below).
We will sit down with you, determine which services you want and set forth the price you’ll pay in advance of each phase. You can even choose which phases you want us to handle and which you prefer to do on your own or on a general unbundled payment basis.
You will leave that meeting with a predictable pricing schedule and a great incentive to minimize the unnecessary phases of litigation. For example, when you realize that a CFI (Child Family Investigator) will cost thousands of dollars, you may be more likely to agree on a parenting plan. When you realize discovery motions are a pricey hassle, you may be more likely to spend the weekend turning over documents the court will make you produce in any event.
Phase pricing happens for people of all income levels and we are one of the first small firms in Colorado to offer it to our litigation clients.
Recurring Fees: You may have heard a big shot in a movie saying, “I have my attorney on retainer.” You can be that big shot by paying us a set monthly fee as part of your family law or probate litigation proceeding. We will sit down with you to decide how much work we expect your case will entail each month. We will review your case monthly to see if these numbers are accurate and make adjustments if needed, or might choose to limit or increase our work based on the fees and needs of the case.
You will remain in control, determining the monthly fee and scope of our work. I have found my cases have a certain average monthly cost and that divorces cost more the longer they go for this reason. It is one reason it is important to me to move the cases along as quickly as is reasonably possible. It is also the reason I can estimate a fair retainer for your case. You pay it each month and that is all you pay. This is not a payment plan. It is a set amount and, absent emergency, you will not owe more than that amount.
Flat Fee: We have always offered flat fees for drafting. Now we are extending the offer to our family law and probate litigation cases. We will sit down, calculate an estimated overall cost for your litigation, and ask you to pay that fee. Boom. Payment done and now your case will unfold with no further payment, absent emergency.
Known Unknowns: Things pop up in cases — they pop up in EVERY case — and we cannot know for sure what they are. In family law and probate litigation, it is fairly easy to anticipate what some of them will be. Our predictable pricing models will not require you to pay for these things UNLESS they happen. Once they happen, we can add them to your payment plan IF you authorize us to do so. We will sit down and go through these known unknowns as part of designing your predictable pricing plan.
For example, in family law, the known unknowns may be Temporary Orders, CFI, Parental Responsibility Evaluator (PRE), discovery motions, telephone conferences with the court, protection orders, motions to restrict parenting time, professional evaluations and appraisals, overly-contentious or non-responsive opposing counsel and parties, and continuances.
Even though our pricing is lower than most law firms of our level of experience and excellence, our fees do add up. Predictable pricing will make clear how much your case will likely cost, minimizing surprises and helping you stay in control of as much of the attorney expenses as is possible during this difficult time of your life.
If you are faced with a family law issue or need legal counsel to help with your divorce proceedings in a creative, affordable way, contact Andersen Law PC today at 720-922-3880 or