How much does it cost?
The fees charged by the lawyers at Ronald W Nelson, PA, depend upon the time actually spent on the case, the complexity of the case, the novelty of the issues, and several additional factors. No domestic relations case (divorce, legal separation, annulment, child support, child custody, determination of parentage) is like any other, so there is no way that we can tell our clients how much any particular case will cost. We do not have a listing of “standard fees” or “flat fees” and it would be impossible to make one. The exact fee for any case depends completely upon the services necessary for the individual case.
The lawyers at Ronald W Nelson, PA work primarily on an hourly fee basis (although for “limited scope representation” matters, we may have fees based upon our estimate of the time required for that particular limited matter.)
Since many cases we handle are complex domestic relations cases that require specialized knowledge and experience, the number of hours spent in those cases may be very high, and it is not unusual for the fees in complex cases to exceed tens of thousands of dollars.
Over the years, we have found that the most important and valuable advice we can give is often the first 60 minutes we meet with a new client. The first 60-minute consultation often lays the groundwork for a working relationship and often also can save untold thousands of dollars in additional legal fees.
If we are hired for ongoing legal work, we require a refundable deposit (“retainer”) before we enter any appearance in court and before we undertake any significant action (other than the initial consultation). We typically retain this deposit until after our final billing, with each month’s billing payable at the time of that billing.
We discuss our fees with you at this first meeting and our understanding will be expressed in a written contract, which may be terminated at any time.
It is important to know that the fees for any legal matter are largely determined by the amount of anger and resentment between the parties, how much cooperation and agreement there is between the parties, the complexity of the issues, the kind of case, and many other factors that have a direct effect on the amount of time spent – and, therefore, the amount of fees charged.