One of the main questions clients have when contacting a criminal defense lawyer is, “How much will this cost me?” The answer depends on the factors of a case and its complexity. During your free consultation, an attorney can explain exactly how much they will cost and give you an idea of what you can expect to pay. This way, you can be sure you are comfortable with any fee arrangement you and the lawyer work out.
For simple matters, such as a traffic ticket, a flat fee may be best. Because the lawyer has worked with these cases many times in the past, they can reasonably estimate the amount of time they will need to spend on it. In this arrangement, the lawyer quotes a price, the client pays it, and the matter is resolved. For simple matters, this is often the best arrangement for both the client and the lawyer.
More complex matters, however, will almost always require an hourly fee arrangement. For example, a felony assault charge will take substantial time to properly defend. Because the attorney has no way of knowing how long he or she will need, they will often quote an hourly rate then bill the client in 6-minute increments (1/10 of an hour). This way, the client will only pay for time spent directly on the case.
It is important for clients to remember that more than money is at stake here. If you face serious fines or jail time, spending a little extra on a lawyer may ultimately save you substantial amounts of time and money. A cheaper lawyer might seem like a great option until it results in a sub-optimal outcome for your case.
At Kroll & Johnson, we balance fees with experience, providing high quality, cost-effective representation. If you have been arrested in Portland or anywhere in Oregon, we can help. Contact us right away for a free consultation.