4 Tips to Save Money on Attorney’s Fees in your Family case
Throughout your case, you will need to provide information to your attorney to assist in your representation. Information may include financial documents as well as text messages and social media posts. Do not pay your attorney or their staff to organize your documents into categories and chronological order. You can save quite a bit of money by organizing the documents before you give them to your attorney. Also, read the document requests carefully and be sure to provide all of the requested information. This will save you money because there will be less follow up needed from your attorney to respond to document request.
Be sure to give the documents to your attorney in the best condition and format. For example, bank statements should be in pdf format. Formats such as screenshots are difficult to read and may not be accepted by the judge. Below are links with information for scanning documents into pdf from your Apple or Android phone.
For a text message conversation, the digital version is best. If you cannot send that to your attorney, make sure that the image includes the date, time, and the phone numbers or names of the persons in the conversation. Do not delete the original conversation from your phone. Your attorney may need to present the actual phone in court.
Do the Leg Work
You are paying your attorney a lot of money for the education, knowledge, and experience acquired in law school, numerous previous cases, and trial. There will be many things in your case that you will need to rely on your attorney to do. You do not want to pay your attorney for doing things you can do yourself. For example, a common dispute in family cases is which school district is better. One piece of information used in this type of dispute is the Illinois School Report Card. You can google this information just as well as your attorney can and then provide it to your attorney in the proper format. This can apply to other types of information such as police reports, maps, retirement plan booklets and more.
Take a step back
Naturally, emotions run high in divorces and cases involving children. Take some time to process your emotions before communicating or directing your attorney. For example, your attorney may send you something from opposing counsel that contains false allegations or mischaracterizes the facts. Receiving a communication like this is upsetting. Your first reaction might be to fire off a string of emails to your attorney refuting the allegations or making some of your own. Your attorney is going to charge you for all of those communications. Instead, take a step back and deep breath. Once you have had some time to process the communications, put together a detailed response to your attorney outlining your position on the allegations in one clear communication. Or schedule a meeting as we will discuss below.
Schedule a meeting
In line with taking a step back, you can also save money by scheduling a meeting. Instead of contacting your attorney every time you have a thought that might help your case or a question about the status, write them down as they come to you. Then when you have several items to discuss, put together an agenda of what you want to discuss. If possible, send it to your attorney before the meeting so that she can do any needed research ahead of time.
Contact us if you are facing a family law issue. We have the knowledge and experience to vigorously fight for you.
Content contained on this site is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. You should consult an attorney of your choosing to discuss your particular case and to obtain legal advice specific to your situation.