Most lawyers earn their income by charging hourly fees for their services. That is beneficial to clients in that they don’t pay more for the service than the actual work performed by the attorney. But it can also be hard on the budget, when a client doesn’t know what the monthly bill will be, and each month of work can be different. Estimating the cost of a divorce or family law matter is not easy. Various pieces can make the work harder and more costly. Conflict drives up cost. Delays drive up cost. Emotions get in the way of good decision-making and can drive up cost.
Because it is our goal to lower conflict between couples, in addition to offering regular monthly billing and hourly-rate services, as of 2023 we now also offer flat fee mediation services to couples who would rather pay fees upfront and not have to worry about ongoing billable hours. At the initial consultation, our clients decide whether they want to hire us to work hourly (paying only for out of pocket costs and the work we perform on an hourly basis), or whether they want to pay a flat fee for a mediation package of either 4 sessions, 5 sessions or 6 sessions. Those sessions can be live and in person, or via Zoom. Each package is a different flat fee cost, and any sessions needed beyond the number agreed to can be paid for a la carte. For those couples who know their case will be very amicable and have few hiccups, paying the hourly rate may be more cost effective. For people who aren’t sure how hard it will be to negotiate certain issues, or who have more issues to negotiate (child-related issues, multiple assets, large disparity of incomes, emotional issues including infidelity or substance abuse, etc.), the flat-fee packages might be more appealing, since you are paying a set price for a certain number of sessions, and won’t have to worry about keeping track of the cost of every single call and email.
Flat fee packages are currently only offered for our mediation services, not for litigation services.