Tips for cutting down costs of a business lawyer.
Many entrepreneurs get daunted by hiring a lawyer for the business wing to the cost that it signifies. Hiring a lawyer conjures up images of skyrocketing legal bills. However, there are various ways on you can keep control over the Expense that you undertake by hiring legal advice and guidance for business.
Learn more about how lawyers charge and how you can use the various systems to keep the building cost of your business lawyer low.
Hourly or per diem rate. Most lawyers charge by the hour. If traveling is involved they may charge extra.
Charging by a flat fee. Some attorneys and lawyers can also suggest a flat charge for certain routine matters such as reviewing contracts and processing loan documentation.
Monthly retainer. One of the options that you can use is to pay a fixed monthly fee to the lawyer if you anticipate a lot of routine questions and legal advice.
Contingency fee. Many lawyers often work on a contingency basis which means that for lawsuits and complex legal matters they receive a percentage of the proceeds if they happen to succeed in the legal proceedings., And contingency fee ranges between 25% to 40%. In case they fail to get and deliver the outcomes you require, they received only the expenses.
Value billing. Some lawyers and law firms bill at a higher rate on business matters if they can obtain a favorable result such as associating a contract that saves the client thousands of dollars. You should typically try and avoid this method which is also known as partial contingency.
If you think any one method will work better for you than the other, you can try and negotiate with the attorney. The attorney may be also willing to offer flexible arrangement to meet your particular business needs.
When you hire a lawyer to draw up an agreement known as an engagement letter detailing the business and billing method find out if more than one lawyer works on your file make sure that you specify the rate for each attorney separately so that you are not charged a higher fee meant for one of the primary lawyers in a from when your work is being done by the associate who charges less.
This agreement should also specify what out of the pocket expenses you are expected to reimburse. Some will seek reimbursement for means, secretarial overtime, postage, photocopies which many people consider to be part of business expense. You should agree to reimburse only the reasonable and necessary out of pocket expenses. If you find unexpected charges and expenses on your bill, you should ask your lawyer for authorization.
Get an estimate beforehand.
You can also ask a lawyer to give you an estimate of how each legal process or procedure is going to cost in advance. This will give you an idea about the kind of legal costs that you are facing in the future. Some lawyers will also guarantee you a cap in writing. This will be the maximum cost of a particular service. This can help you budget and give you a more accurate idea of how much you can expect to incur increased legal costs allowing you to budget for it more accurately.
What increment does the lawyer used to calculate the fee. A lawyer can keep his track of time in increments of as less as 5 min. or as long as half an hour. The shorter the increment the more you are likely to save over quick phone calls and short advices. Using larger time increment could result in you getting built $50 for a five-minute phone call.
Request a monthly itemized bill. Many lawyers wait for the build to get reasonably large before the Senate across to the customer. This can result in you getting unmanageably large legal bills suddenly and out of the blue. In order to avoid this ask for a monthly itemized bill from a lawyer. This will also help you monitor the costs and review them for any excessive fee which may be a result of too many people working on your file or the wrong people or even a mistake in the billing.
Prompt payment discount. See if you can negotiate with the lawyer to give you up prompt payment discount. A prompt payment discount can be in the range of 5 to 10% and be extended to you for being a prompt payment customer who pays within 30 days of the invoice date.
Prepare before a meeting or consultation with the business lawyer. When you need to consult your lawyer on some business issue, make sure that you arrange all the necessary documents and know exactly what you want to discuss. You can even fax the necessary documents to the lawyer in advance so that he does not have to waste time reading them during the actual meeting. Being prepared for consultation and meeting with your business lawyer will help you save time and money. Organizing yourself in this manner will also avoid you having to call your attorney many times during a single day. As he you should avoid doing this anyway because it is likely to create problems between you and your business lawyer. No one appreciates too much of their time getting taken for nonessential issues. No one also likes and unorganized and unprofessional approach to dealing with business problems and issues.
Meet with the lawyer regularly. While this may not seem like such a good idea specially if you’re trying to keep the legal costs down, meeting with your lawyer regularly is actually very effective in reducing the phone calls and the number of and you have to refer to your lawyer otherwise. Even a monthly meeting of 5 to 10 min. can help you take care of legal problems before they happen and have had a chance to grow into something more unmanageable.