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Bouldin Law Firm
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How Are Divorce Attorneys Paid?

Nearly all divorce attorneys are paid on an hourly basis.  The attorney should spell out the process, initial retainer and anticipated costs in the initial consultation.  Some attorneys offer a free initial consultation; but be sure to ask before assuming this to be the case.  I, and many other busy lawyers, do NOT offer free consultations beyond the first phone call.  If you want to sit down and discuss your case, you will undoubtedly receive advice and discuss various ways to handle your case.  An attorney-client relationship is established, which would likely preclude representation of your spouse.  As such, I do charge for my time. There may also be some fixed fee cases, but those are generally limited to truly uncontested and simple divorces without asset division. A retainer is a set amount of up front money.  Retainer agreements do differ, some are refundable, others must be replenished and some are non-refundable.  If you do not understand, be sure to ask.  A retainer is often a good faith down payment on services to be rendered.  Almost all attorneys requires some form of a retainer.  Unfortunately, many clients are less apt to pay legal fees after the case is over and more willing to pay before the case begins or when issues are in litigation.   Nearly all attorneys will have clients sign a Fee Agreement.  This should outline all costs and responsibilities of the client and the attorney.  In addition to the retainer, often additional fees and costs may be required and are paid by the client. These fees for divorce often include: filing fees, service fees, warning order attorneys, guardian ad litem, mediation costs and fees, and costs for depositions including court reporters.  There are also often additional fees for QDRO preparation and division, preparation of Deeds and transfer of specific assets.  There are times when the fees may even exceed the legal costs.  All fees are not incurred in every case, so clients should discuss which fees may be applicable in the individual case. Generally, fees can be paid by check, cash, and any debit or credit cards.  Other arrangements may be made on an individual basis. If you have questions or concerns, ask your attorney. For a consultation in Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at [email protected].

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