Frequently Asked Questions...
What will I be charged for attorney fees?
In this economic climate, we are very sensitive to costs. We work with you to figure out what you may be able to handle by yourself and what you may need our assistance with — sometimes you may need just a little advice. We provide that help and advice in a manner that is as cost-effective to you as possible, using our expertise and experience. Most cases are charged on a per-hour basis, and your attorney will inform you of that charge. Some cases are handled on a flat fee basis or a contingent fee basis. Your attorney will be happy to explain this in more detail and answer any questions you may have with regard to attorney fees.
Can I use a credit card to make a payment on my account or for an advance fee deposit?
Yes, we are happy to take a payment or advance fee deposit from you using your credit card. We take VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express credit cards. For your convenience, you may fill out the Credit Card Authorization Form you received with your billing statement and mail it to us at 120 East First Street, Aberdeen, WA 98520, or if you prefer, you can call our office, and we will be happy to take your payment information over the phone.
Can I meet with a firm attorney without having to come up with a large advance fee deposit?
Yes, we will gladly sit down and consult with you about your case/issues and charge you for our time and advice either on a hourly basis or some other flat-fee arrangement. Once we have set up a file and established an attorney-client relationship, we will be available to you to consult with you on an as-needed basis. Thereafter, any time that you would like us to appear in your case, we would require a further discussion about arranging and paying an advance fee deposit.
Can you help me with a speeding ticket or other traffic infraction I have received?
I was charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). Can you help me? What should I expect?
I was injured in an accident. How do I to recover my costs and other monies?
My renters have stopped paying rent. How do I collect the monies owed and get them to move out?
I am thinking about divorcing my spouse. How do I start the process?
Can I get a divorce without an attorney?
Yes, you may proceed with any and all family law related matters without an attorney. You can consult with one of our attorneys about your issues at any phase of the proceedings and still continue to represent yourself in court. At any point that you feel the complexity of the issues requires the expertise of an attorney, we can appear and handle some or all of the pending issues.
How much does it cost to get a divorce?
This question is virtually impossible to answer. The facts and issues in every divorce – or any family law case – are so different and varied that there is no such thing as a standard or straight-forward divorce. We evaluate each situation individually and would require some amount for an advance fee deposit before taking on your case and/or appearing before the court. We bill our time in family law cases on an hourly basis. Hourly rates vary from firm to firm and area to area. Our hourly rates are based upon the experience of our attorneys and are reasonable within our community. You may discuss the advance fee deposit amounts and the hourly rate with the attorney you speak with when setting up an appointment.
If my spouse and I have reached an agreement to settle the issues in our divorce, can we hire one attorney to draft the paperwork?
Can we hire one of the firm attorneys to arbitrate/mediate any disputes between my ex-spouse and me?
Most of our attorneys have many years of experience in various areas of the law. Aside from mandatory arbitration and mediation cases under local court rules where we are assigned by the Court to hear a matter, we would be able to help you with your proceedings by acting as a privately hired mediator or an arbitrator on any phase of your case. In the family law area, this most often arises in a post-decree scenario under the terms of the alternative dispute resolution section of a current parenting plan. We are, however, also available to come in at any point in your case to help resolve and settle the matter and/or specific issues.
If I need a Will or other estate planning services, how do I get started?
Advance preparation is the key to effective estate planning to ensure that your assets will be handled and your loved ones cared for in the manner that you desire. The first step is to prepare a list of all the assets and liabilities you have. Next, you will want to make a list of people you want to share in your estate. Please call us with any questions and/or to set up an appointment so that we may sit down with you and discuss all the options and ensure that your estate planning goals are met.
I am having surgery and was told I need a Health Care Directive or Medical Power of Attorney. What is that and do you provide that service?
A “Medical Power of Attorney” gives a specific person or persons the authority to choices for you should you be incapacitated or unable to make decisions on your own with regard to your medical care. You select who should handle your health care choices and discuss the matter with them. You could name a spouse, relative, or someone else you trust.
Our attorneys are familiar with both forms and, with a little bit of information from you, can prepare either of these types of documents fairly promptly.