As a result of the economy and pressure from clients, law firms have been re-evaluating their business models and how they bill their fees. Some firms are being forced away from their standard practice of billing clients by the hour. While hourly-rate billing has advantages for law firms, this practice leaves clients in the dark about the ultimate cost of their legal services, and in some cases may lead to higher fees than necessary.
Lamson & Cutner’s clients benefit from fixed legal fees
Lamson & Cutner’s long-standing policy on legal fees is another factor that sets it apart from many other law firms. L&C believes that its clients have the right to know – in advance – exactly how much their legal services will cost. If another firm is telling you "trust us, our fees are fair and reasonable," but not telling you how much their services will actually cost – it doesn’t have to be that way.
Lamson & Cutner has always provided virtually all of its legal services on a fixed fee basis. As a result, L&C's clients are able to determine for themselves whether the law firm's services will be cost-effective for them, before incurring any obligation. L&C's fixed fees are always stated in writing in a clearly understandable fee agreement that also provides all of the terms and conditions relating to its services.
Also, Lamson & Cutner’s fees are all-inclusive. The firm wants to obtain a result, not simply prepare and provide a document. For example, when L&C states a fixed fee for creating a trust, that fee includes as many meetings and as many drafts of the trust document as may be needed to prepare the document to the client’s satisfaction, assisting the client with funding the trust, advising the trustee regarding the operation of the trust, and answering any further questions after the trust has been created and funded.
In rare instances where a client requests services for which Lamson & Cutner is unable to quote a fixed fee, they will explain why they are unable to do so, and will discuss with the client other possible methods of determining a fair amount of compensation for their services. Again, any fee agreement will be clearly set forth in advance in writing.
In order to receive an accurate fee quotation, a client will usually need to schedule an initial consultation with a Lamson & Cutner attorney. In the consultation, L&C will learn the facts of your specific situation, describe the laws and rules that apply, explain the strategies that L&C could employ to satisfy your objectives, and then provide you with an itemized quotation of L&C's fees and costs for doing the legal work needed to implement the strategy that makes the best sense for you.
Lamson & Cutner takes particular care to propose legal strategies that will be cost effective. Sometimes a prospective client will call the firm and ask, for example, "How much do you charge to draft a trust?" L&C’s response will likely be, "What kind of trust do you have in mind, and how do you know that a trust is the best legal approach for your situation?" Unfortunately, there is no "one size fits all" solution for the elderly or disabled person. Every case and every client is unique, and L&C’s strategies are always custom tailored to the specific needs and circumstances of the individual client, which are determined at or following the initial consultation.
Lamson & Cutner wants to focus its efforts and energies on getting the best results for its clients. Once L&C starts work on a matter, neither the firm nor the client wants to be distracted by concerns about legal fees. L&C is successful in this regard because it tells its clients in advance exactly how much its services will cost, and clients never pay a penny more for those services than the amount agreed upon at the outset.