Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Perhaps I just need to get my head out of ...

... the legal practitioner low-rent trailer park, but is $32 cacrimdefense04/16/18
I hope it isn’t, but if it is, this “profession” is a wearyattorney04/16/18
I practice criminal defense in Los Angeles. The fee seems hi corneroffice04/16/18
Does the fee include trial and/or appeal work if convicted? wolfman04/16/18
Appeal not included. I don't feel good about this one. It tu cacrimdefense04/16/18
I'm not in CA, but I agree, a $32,500 fee sounds high. The r thirdtierlaw04/16/18
And this thread conclusively demonstrates the joke that is t wearyattorney04/16/18
Seems awfully high to me. You'll have what? A pretrial and t fettywap04/16/18
experts? investigation? jury selection consultant? full on defensivelawyer04/16/18
Are the experts and investigators included in the $32,500? I thirdtierlaw04/16/18
It doesn't sound like any of that is being done or needs to fettywap04/16/18
An investigator was utilized by previous counsel. Also, I ag cacrimdefense04/16/18
Bro, your realtor wouldn't blink at charging you $30K+ if th palmtree1904/16/18
That is not a high fee if you are billing hourly at a reason shitlawsf04/16/18
cacrimdefense (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:44 am)

... the legal practitioner low-rent trailer park, but is $32,500 an excessive fee to charge a defendant facing a pair of misd. charges in the Los Angeles/Ventura/OC areas? Conviction on the second charge would involve sex offender registration (the case involves a single alleged adult victim).

My services are being utilized by a firm for which I've only worked a couple times previously. I don't like the case, and more importantly, that strikes me as a crapload of money to charge for misd. defense.

My concern is a problem with and/or complaint to, the CA Bar (in the event this guy is convicted). The case is going to go to trial.

Is the fee too much? Is it unconscionable?

Input from former and current crim. practitioners in the Golden State will be appreciated.

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wearyattorney (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:23 pm)

I hope it isn’t, but if it is, this “profession” is a bigger joke than I thought it was.

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corneroffice (Apr 16, 2018 - 4:09 pm)

I practice criminal defense in Los Angeles. The fee seems high, unless trial and experts are included. The fight will be on the registration. Most times prosecutors will not budge on this, though you may get a 288 type of report from an expert, indicating your client is not a high risk to re-offend, which can give you some leverage.

Make sure to keep track of your hours. A big, flat, non-refundable fee, can later result in a fee dispute.

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wolfman (Apr 16, 2018 - 10:20 am)

Does the fee include trial and/or appeal work if convicted? IANAL, and not in CA, but I wonder what sex-offender folks with $ get charged in NY... my hunch is it's not much less...

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cacrimdefense (Apr 16, 2018 - 12:28 pm)

Appeal not included. I don't feel good about this one. It turns out, the contract was renegotiated after the sex charge was added.

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thirdtierlaw (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:13 pm)

I'm not in CA, but I agree, a $32,500 fee sounds high. The registry is no joke, but if you're billing at $200 an hour that's 162 hours. But if the going rate is $400/hr in your area, 80hrs for everything from an arraignment through trial is at least in the realm of feasibility. Still seems a bit high for 2 misdemeanors.

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wearyattorney (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:22 pm)

And this thread conclusively demonstrates the joke that is the legal profession.

Kids, hopefully you are reading this. If you manage to find a way to survive in gutter law and become highly competent at it, like the OP, you’ll have to worry if your fee, ie master electrician hourly rate, is too high for a case that literally could result in someone’s life getting destroyed.

The joke that is law, and what a joke it is.

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fettywap (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:39 pm)

Seems awfully high to me. You'll have what? A pretrial and trial date, and some minimal preparation. I would think over $500 an hour is getting on the high end, and more than that would be excessive.

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defensivelawyer (Apr 16, 2018 - 1:45 pm)

experts? investigation? jury selection consultant? full on sentencing litigation if the registration is discretionary.

sure it's high, but id pay 32,000 not to be a sex registrant.

i dont see why this should be cheaper than a complex felony if fully worked up...

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thirdtierlaw (Apr 16, 2018 - 3:02 pm)

Are the experts and investigators included in the $32,500? I didn't get the sense that they were. It sounded like a flat fee for just the representation of the client.

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fettywap (Apr 16, 2018 - 2:14 pm)

It doesn't sound like any of that is being done or needs to be done in this case. But like I said, you should look at how many hours it would probably take, and I think over $500 an hour would be unreasonable.

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cacrimdefense (Apr 16, 2018 - 3:13 pm)

An investigator was utilized by previous counsel. Also, I agree. $500 or over per hour would be excessive. Theoretically (as per the terms of the K), my time is valued at $395 per hour.

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palmtree19 (Apr 16, 2018 - 8:35 pm)

Bro, your realtor wouldn't blink at charging you $30K+ if the first showing resulted in a sale. Don't feel bad about being efficient and creating value at the same time. Clients don't actually value your time, they value your advice and the results you can provide. You can capture back some of the value you create -- it's called profit. Last I checked, America encourages profit-seeking behavior and the communists lost the Cold War.

The legal profession... well... some elements of it have a problem with economics. That's a large part of why the legal industry is in long-term decline in many practice areas. Don't let that part of the legal profession make you a self-defeating loser. Take the money and take the kids to Disneyland. Your realtor is already there with her kids.

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shitlawsf (Apr 16, 2018 - 10:49 pm)

That is not a high fee if you are billing hourly at a reasonable rate as per the contract. If you put the work into this case that it will require to avoid the registration, you will go through that money in no time. I had a friend who went through $150k for an adult rape through trial. He earned every penny of it even though he lost. Sex cases are no joke even if this one is a misdemeanor.

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