Sunday, October 19, 2014

Lawyer Fees / Legal Fees / Case Dismissed / Do I Have to Pay My Lawyer? / Retainer Agreement / Attorney-Client Relationship / AVVO / Michael A. Haber, Esq,. **ARRESTED / **305DUI

Q:    Pulled over with no probable cause searched with no probable cause, arrested. Charges never filed, do I still pay my lawyer?Charges were never filed and case has been dismissed. I payed my lawyer $1000 retaining fee and another $1000 towards upcoming possible court appearances but the charges were dropped no information was filed and she never had to appear in court and she still says I should pay her another $1000 for my remaining balance. Should I still pay her ? It seems the prosecutor/state attorney realized they had no case and found me innocent before formally filing charges, why should I still pay this lady ?


Michael Adam Haber


Contributor Level 20
Answered Your contract with your lawyer is a legal obligation regardless of what anyone else does.

If your agreement called for you to pay X, then you must pay X. If it does not then you do not.

Every case that I work on starts and ends with a written fee agreement which clearly delineates my obligations to the client and visa-verse. I am always clear, both verbally and in writing, as to what my client's financial obligations are, and therefore it is up to me whether I choose to cut a given client some financial slack in a given case.  Sometimes I choose to, sometimes not.

That said, if you do not have a written contract with your lawyer, then your lawyer, who may well be an excellent lawyer, is a lousy businessperson, and you likely have no LEGAL obligation (although you might have an ethical one) to pay her even another dime.

Memo to Clients: Do not hire lawyers on handshakes. Insist on written agreements.

Memo to lawyers: Do not do business with clients on handshakes. Lock down everyone's obligations in a written retainer agreement.

I hope that I have been helpful in answering your question.
First, second and third: No attorney-client relationship exists by virtue of any Q&A with Michael A. Haber, Esq. on Avvo. Fourth: Anything that you post on Avvo (or on similar sites) or on any social media is by its nature public. It is essentially an admission / confession and can be introduced into evidence as a statement against your interest in a subsequent legal proceeding. Once posted you lose any reasonable expectation of privacy, so, as this is an open forum (with no privilege attached), please be extra careful when considering what to post online (forewarned is forearmed.)

For more than 23 years Michael A. Haber, P.A. has been providing creative, effective and zealous advocacy and counsel in cases ranging from DUI to drug trafficking and from misdemeanors to first degree murder.  

At Michael A. Haber, P.A. "Its all about reasonable doubt"!

Michael A. Haber, Esq. is prepared to speak with you about your case!

1-888-SHARK-8-1, 305-381-8686, 305-798-2220, **ARRESTED, **305DUI, **MIAMIDUI, **MIAMILAW or **HABERLAW.

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