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Contracts, Fees and Costs

What is the BENEFIT of a contract/legal services agreement?

We want to be on the same page with you about what we do for you and what it will cost, plus anything else that clarifies our partnership working together. To establish an attorney-client relationship, we require you to sign a legal services agreement (contract) that will spell out what we will do, what you will do, what the estimated fees and costs will be, and the cost for any other events that might come up if or when they do during the case. The agreement also specifies how and when the fees and costs will be due, and you will be provided a rate sheet for hourly rates and estimated costs. You may also need to sign a dual representation memorandum if we will be representing you and a spouse or other family member, or you and an employer or employee.  This discusses the potential for conflicts of interest and what will be done about it if or when a conflict arises. We offer new clients the option to have a longer sign up meeting the same day as your consultation or when we go over the contract, collect your deposit, initial documentation and information to start working on your case that very same day. Keep this in mind when setting up your consultation or first post-consultation appointment, as this can help save a lot of time if you are very busy.

HOW we charge our fees and costs

We know that you want predictable fees and costs so that you can budget for your case.  Once we know more about your situation and we select a strategy/service for you at the consultation, we will give you a fee and cost quote. For some routine matters, we charge on a flat fee basis by stage of the case.  However, with the rapidly changing forms and policies in the current Trump administration, we are billing a number of matters hourly where we expect changes, unpredictability, frequent requests for evidence, and/or longer processing times. For matters that are not predictable as to likelihood of success or expected amount of time needed, we typically bill hourly or use other alternative billing arrangements.  For employers who have an ongoing fairly predictable need for counsel, we also offer monthly retainer options, as well as bulk service options.The fee terms are spelled out in the written legal services agreement and cost/rate sheet.  Remember, legal fees are for staff and attorney TIME devoted to your case, while costs are usually advanced EXPENSES or paid out of pocket to third parties (e.g., government or court filing fees, passport photos, etc.)

We tailor your fees to the specific facts, the priorities in your case, anticipated issues or ancillary applications that may be required, your ability to pay, the complexity of the case, and/or the extraordinary results to be achieved. What may have worked for your friend, relative, or colleague, may not be the best solution for you. In addition, we need to consider the government’s periodic shifts in adjudication trends. An example would be the types of immigration or citizenship categories or fact patterns that are likely to trigger “Requests for Evidence,” audits, investigations, or other scenarios that could involve more work. We pride ourselves on giving you the individual, customized attention and service that you deserve. We do NOT provide cookie cutter services.

HOW can fees and costs be paid?

We accept checks and online echecks, cash, Visa, Mastercard, and Discover cards, and mobile/text bank payments from banks that participate in ClearXChange, as well as wire transfers.

WHAT happens once you sign the contract and pay the deposit?

Your matter is important to us. We will work hard for you. You will receive ongoing communications about the status of your case; we will answer all of your questions; and we will seek your approval for new or additional services if needed. Your approval is required for any strategic decisions that need to be made. Unlike other firms where you see your attorney once at the beginning, or maybe not until your agency interview or court hearing, at this firm, your attorney will be available and will have in-depth knowledge about your case throughout your matter.

Once you decide to hire this firm, besides the written fee agreement, you will receive a checklist of documents we will need to prepare your case along with instructions about how to obtain certain documents or information. If not done for the consultation, you will also be sent credentials to log into our web portal where you will be able to email or message us and upload/download documents.  You will also be sent instructions for tracking your case with us and with any agencies or courts we may be dealing with.  We provide monthly or periodic billing statements, and periodic updates and requests for your input on case or firm matters.

Open communication is the key to our relationship. We encourage you to talk to us about any questions or concerns you may have during our partnership together on this journey to resolve your immigration or citizenship needs. We do expect you to actively participate in your own case.

ARE YOU READY TO GET STARTED? If so, please call the office at (206) 282-2279 to set up your initial consultation or complete the form to the right.