Firm Policies and Retainer Items

Firm Policies and Retainer Items

Firm Policies and Retainer Items

Our Firm Rates and Policies

Read these. By hiring us, you agree to them. To the extent that the one you sign at our office has differences or updates, however, that one, not this one, governs. So read them carefully.

Litigation Warning

Litigation Notice: If you hire us for litigation, note that litigation can be stressful and unpredictably expensive. Initial litigation retainers are estimated to cover initial portions of the litigation, such as initial pleadings and fees, but will need to be replenished in advance from time to time, as it will not cover the entire costs of arbitration or trial through judgment. Be forewarned that litigation costs can often exceed $150,000 in fees per side and can run $15,000 per month or more. As costs depend largely on the actions of the court & adversary, there is no way we can estimate the final cost. When your retainer reaches zero, we require immediate replenishment or we will resign. Mid-matter retention of new counsel can be costly to you, so please replenish promptly. Replenishment amounts vary upon the amount of upcoming imminent work we must perform for you.

3. JOINT & ENTITY REPRESENTATION. If you hire us for a company or group, confidentiality and present or future conflict of interest is waived among the group. Costs can be saved if we represent the whole group, but members should consider retaining independent counsel to handle their unique interests apart from those of the group. If we set up an entity for you, we are such entity’s, and not your or the group’s, attorney. Please designate a group member to be our contact point. Note that Mediation/Arbitration can sometimes be cheaper and faster than litigation. Please consider them.

4. FEES & COSTS Because it is impossible to know in advance the amount of fees or costs needed to complete your matters, such are computed as follows: Our attorneys' rates range from $250 per hr to $350 per hr. Faxes: 20¢ page, Copies: 25¢ page, Courier: $25 metro, Vehicle Charges: 50¢ per mile, Billing calls: $10, Specialist Attorney: up to $350 per hour, Litigation Attorney $250-$350 per hr, Associate Attorney: $180 per hour (we will tell you if it is an associate), Paralegal or Investigator: $100 per hour, and Clerical: $35 per hour, returned checks: $220. Computer-Assisted Research, Long-Distance Telephone Calls, Travel Expenses, Postage or Express Mail will be assessed at cost. All hourly matters are billed in minimum increments of 15 min per task. Engagement and allocation of work among specialists, attorneys, paralegals, independent contractors and clerical staff is at our sole discretion. Specialists, including specialist attorneys and professional experts, may charge higher rates, whereupon such rate will be communicated to you for your consent at that time. Meetings are billed from the time scheduled and cancelable at no charge only with 24hr advance notice. Un-cancelled missed meetings are billed at the reserved length, or 1.5 hours, whichever is longer. You authorize us to split attorney fees at our discretion with any attorney, at the percentage of our choice. In case of specialist, associate, contract, and litigation attorneys, who may be independent contractors, the fee split is often $60-$100 or less paid to them, the balance to us. Often, more than one person works on a matter at the same time. If so, you will be charged for both. Travel time for meetings/hearings/trials/depositions is at the above hourly rates. Representation outside of Colorado may be through affiliated firms, co-counsel or contract attorneys licensed in the local jurisdiction. Their fees will be subject to our rates/policies, and billed to you from our office. If lower than ours, we mark rates to ours and retain any difference. All rates hereunder are subject to increase quarterly at the consumer price index percentage.

5. RETAINER ONLY FIRM. We work from retainer only. Except for written flat fee matters, we require an advance retainer to be determined before we begin. It goes in a trust account and we draw against it as fees/costs accrue. 10% of all retainers are automatically earned upon receipt in consideration of retaining us to be available to you. If the retainer drops under US $500, it must immediately be replenished to $7,500 or the amount we state. If you give us more work, increased retainer may be needed. Replenishments tend to be higher than $7,500 leading up to and during trial. We will do our best to send a monthly invoice/statement. Retainer balances existing at the end of representation are refunded. If we cannot locate you, we will use the balance attempting to find you, at our above rates. Your failure to object to invoices, statements or line items within one month of our mailing constitutes irrevocable acceptance and waives your right to contest them in the future. We are authorized to bill any credit card you give us for any arrearage without notice to you.

6. IF WE DON’T GET PAID: Arrearages: Well, it’s bleak: 20% Upcharge/20% Interest; Personal Guaranty All fees/costs under this agreement increase by 20% during periods when you are out of retainer or are running an arrearage with us, and you will be charged interest of 20% or the legal maximum, compounded monthly, on arrearages, even after termination. If you are a limited liability entity, then whoever signs this agrees that he/she is authorized and will be personally, jointly, and severally liable for all sums due hereunder.

7. Security Interest As security for our fees/costs, you grant us a security interest in all of the papers, files, documents and records, equity or debt securities, interests, retainers or other property you supply to us or we generate in representing you, and in all judgments, settlements, amounts due or to become due concerning matters on which we have acted as your counsel, including proceeds from present or future offerings and capitalizations, whether or not we continued representing you. You authorize us to deduct our bills directly from funds we collect on your behalf instead of billing you.

8. Disputes and Interpretation If litigation, arbitration, or any dispute between us arises out of this agreement, the preponderantly prevailing party will be entitled to recover and shall be awarded its actual fees and costs, including attorney’s fees and costs. Our own professional fees and costs shall be a part of such, in addition to those of any counsel we retain to represent us. Colorado Law and venue shall govern this agreement, excluding conflicts-of-laws provisions. Any fee dispute will be submitted to binding arbitration in Denver, Colorado at our choice and discretion,. No presumptions shall arise owing to one party having drafted this agreement. Our failure to exercise any right hereunder does not constitute a waiver or forfeiture of that or any other present or future right. This is the entire fully-integrated agreement, superseding any other.

9. Termination EITHER OF US SHALL PERMIT THE OTHER TERMINATE REPRESENTATION AND THIS AGREEMENT AT ANY TIME for any or no reason, by written notice. We will return all of your remaining retainer less accrued fees/costs as of termination. Paragraphs 4 through 9, and other terms which impliedly survive, shall survive and continue to bind after termination of this agreement.

10. Guarantees: Although we may provide opinions as to possible outcomes related to your matters, there are no guarantees or warranties concerning the outcome of any discharge, case, dispute or matter. Litigation must be viewed as at best a 50/50 gamble. All changes to this agreement must be made in writing and signed by both you and us. You warrant that all the information you have given us, including without limit the information here and on the client information sheet, is complete and correct to the best of your knowledge and understand that we rely on this information in choosing whether to permit you to go into arrears and/or grant you any payment accommodations or indulgences. If acceptable, you must please initial each page, sign at the end, complete the Info Section, and return to us, along with check/charge for the retainer. Fax/email signatures count as original. If after receiving this, you do not sign but direct us to begin working and we do so, such will constitute your agreement to these terms. If you choose not to sign this, please understand that we will not be your attorneys and will be taking no action on your behalf. In such case, you are advised to seek counsel so as to avoid any potential liability from claims or loss of claims due to deadlines or statutes of limitation. You are advised to seek the advice of a third-party attorney as to the propriety of entering into this agreement. We look forward to representing you.

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