Tag Archives: adhesion contracts

Ceiling, No Floor: Lawyer agreement sets cap, but not floor, on reasonable fee

Even though lawyers are supposed to know how to write a reasonable contract, it’s surprising how many lawyers and law firms don’t have a reasonable contract with their own clients.  I’ve always thought it was a bad sign that the … Continue reading

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Transactional Immunity: Maryland immunizes lawyers designating themselves as estate reps

Lawyers can make really, really bad personal representatives, executors, or trustees to babysit and distribute your money and stuff once you’re gone.  You might think that someone with a law license would be a logical choice to protect your interests … Continue reading

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Off The Record: Court reporters accused of billing for phantom pages

“Court reporters” are stenographers who take down, more or less verbatim, everything said “on the record” in court or a deposition, for example.  Some use a shorthand machine that prints out a sort of standard, but also personalized, code for … Continue reading

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Carefree: Lawyers not excused from duty of care for sophisticated client

Many clients who lose a case, don’t like a negotiated result, or have a run-in with their lawyer (or her bills) think that the lawyer may have committed malpractice.  Lawyers aren’t perfect and they are working in a legal system … Continue reading

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Past Due: Lawyers advised not to offer discounts, write-offs, or free initial consultations to avoid problem clients

Clients can learn a lot about where they stand with lawyers and law firms by hearing what they say about them behind their back, but most lawyers don’t put this sort of talk in writing where clients can see it.  … Continue reading

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Condo-million: Legal fees and penalties punish condo and homeowners

One very common complaint about legal fees arises when condo or homeowners’ associations tack huge legal fees onto every past due payment, fine, or other charge.  Sometimes these are hundreds or thousands of dollars, ten or more times the original … Continue reading

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House Rules: Clients should think twice before trying bar-sponsored fee arbitration

As we’ve noted before, arbitration (and its neutered friend mediation) is a private replacement for civil litigation in court.  Many parties consider arbitration when the local courts are slow, perhaps to get a private “judge” with some special expertise, or … Continue reading

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Fat Fees: Beware of flat fee deals with too much fat

For companies, government agencies, and a few individuals who use lawyers in bulk, it may make sense to pay wholesale, and not retail hourly rates, by hiring your own lawyers as employees.  This makes more sense for steady work where … Continue reading

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Curve Ball: Beware of legal fee pitches from lawyers

We’ve worked with legal fee issues with many lawyers and law firms for more than 20 years now.  While you would think that lawyers understand how legal fees work and the issues they can raise, they often do not know … Continue reading

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Lien On You: Anti-consumer advice disguised as free consumer advice

In exchange for having a monopoly on the practice of law, lawyers are supposed to help the public understand the law and help those who cannot afford to pay a lawyer.  Lawyers like to consider themselves professionals, and these are … Continue reading

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