WHAT IF I SIMPLY DO NOT HAVE THE MONEY TO PAY A RETAINER TO AN ATTORNEY?

In a contested case, attorneys typically require a retainer to be paid up front. Once his retainer is exhausted, the client must pay a new retainer or make other arrangements to pay the fees. But what can a person do if he or she simply cannot pay an upfront retainer or make a sufficient payment plan to pay for the necessary legal services.

Many people try to represent themselves. However, this can be a problem for people unfamiliar with court procedures and the rules of evidence.

One way around the situation is to engage an attorney for limited scope or unbundled services. In this situation, the client pays an attorney to perform only certain limited services, such as drafting the petition, a disclosure statement, a resolution statement or pretrial statement, or discussing the court procedures. The client pays a smaller fixed fee for each service and then handles much of the case by him or herself.

Thus, for example, the client may retain the attorney to draft a resolution statement, but the client then attends the resolution conference alone. His or her rights typically are not decided in the resolution conference unless the parties agree. The client thus can save money by handling the conference without an attorney. If the client subsequently obtains sufficient money, he or she may retain the attorney. But if it is impossible to retain the attorney for the entire case, the client may be able to pay for the services for certain matters that he or she does not understand.

R D SMITH LAW, Roger D. Smith, attorney, is ready, willing and experienced to guide you through the YOUR personal, family law process.

Contact our office at 480-443-7600 to arrange your personal consultation.

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