In assessing and negotiating fees payable, your Attorney will take into account the degree of complexity and the resources required to deal effectively with the matter.

Many legal firms (ours included) work in teams and as such tasks are devolved to the most appropriate fee earner.

This approach results in costs saving for clients, as less complex tasks are not dealt with by over qualified staff.

In cases where the scope of the work can be defined, such as the drafting of wills, ante-nuptial contracts, trusts and unopposed divorces, most Attorneys will agree to work at a fixed fee.

When retaining the services of an Attorney it is important to agree upfront the basis upon which charges are levied.

Except for certain types of work, such as deceased estates and conveyancing, most Attorneys bill at an hourly rate.

It is wise and indeed prudent to conclude a written agreement with your Attorney setting out the basis on which you will be charged so as to avoid any future misunderstandings.

Most Attorneys are happy to discuss fees charged before payment becomes an issue

Ian McLaren