While I agree with most of Rachel A Lyne's answer that it may depend on the terms of the contract and whether the attorney has started billing on an hourly basis and thus has earned some portion of the fee, in Ohio even a "non-refundable" flat fee is actually refundable if the attorney cannot complete the representation per Ohio's Prof. Cond. Rule 1.5(d)(3). http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/LegalResources/Rules/ProfConduct/profConductRules.pdf It just depends on the agreement and what work (...