GUIDE TO LEGAL SERVICES BILLING RATES
Factors Impacting Lawyers’ Fees
When hiring a lawyer the client should discuss and agree in writing, as to the fees and services the lawyer will provide. The fees for lawyers’ services are comprised of various components including: Time & Effort –– Lawyers charge for both the time the lawyer works on the case and the amount of effort the case requires. Outcome –– On occasion, as in contingent fees, the fee may depend on the outcome of the case. Lawyers are not allowed to take criminal/traffic cases on a contingent fee basis. Advice –– Legal opinion following research and case review. Difficulty of Case –– The fee may be higher if the case is deemed difficult or time consuming. Prominence of Lawyer –– If the lawyer is well known and experienced in a particular area of law, the lawyer’s rates might be higher than those of a lawyer who is not as prominent or experienced. Miscellaneous –– The costs associated with the lawyer’s secretary, copies, books, legal research, and other items. Frequent Client Discount –– Lawyers sometimes discount services if the client frequently uses his/her services.
Average Law Firm Billing Rates
For law firms with less than nine lawyers, the following guide provides the national average and median hourly billing rates for lawyers, associates, and paralegals. Of course, local firm rates will vary, depending on location and the specifics of your situation. Status
Hourly Billing Rates
Hourly billing rates also depend on the lawyer’s professional experience. The following chart provides the average and median rates for law firms with less than nine lawyers. Years in Practice
*The middle value of data collected.