Providing high quality, cost-effective legal services is a difficult objective, requiring the involvement of both lawyer and client. In that regard, we keep our clients informed of the likely cost of various phases of our work, counsel our clients on the results that we hope to achieve through our efforts, and consider it a part of our job to guide our clients in the wise use of legal resources.
From our clients, we need thorough and timely responses to our requests for information, a willingness to discuss the difficult cost-benefit issues that will inevitably arise, realistic deadlines, and an understanding that the legal landscape is, at its best, an uncertain one.
Our charges for legal services will generally be based on the time devoted to a matter. “Billable” time is time spent working exclusively on client business. Time that is incidental to the engagement and of only limited value to the client is not recorded as billable. Since some time turns out to be more (or less) valuable to the client than other time, we regularly make subjective adjustments to our billings to reflect these variations in the value of time. (The Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct require attorneys to consider more than a dozen factors — time being only one of them — when establishing a fee for services.) Adjustments to straight time-based charges will be shown on our statements.
To help reach our goal of providing cost-effective legal services, we will be pleased to discuss alternative fee arrangements, including fixed fees, percentage-of-the-transaction fees, and other billing approaches which appropriately balance risk and reward.
We pass on to our clients our expenses for travel, package delivery, electronic research, official fees, and the like. If a charge from a third party exceeds $100, we may ask the client to pay that charge directly to the provider. Unlike other firms, we generally do not charge our clients for photocopies, facsimile transmissions or long distance charges, except in extraordinary circumstances. All out-of-pocket expenses will appear separately on our statements.
Our statements are submitted to clients on a monthly basis, and we anticipate payment upon receipt. Since prompt payment from clients is important to our efforts to keep down our costs of doing business, we may impose a late charge equal to 1.0% per month on amounts which are more than 30 days past due. If there is ever a question about our billings, please let us know immediately. The satisfaction of our clients is of paramount importance to us, and we want to resolve any misunderstandings along these lines as promptly as possible.