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I've been charged with a Class C felony in Washington State. I hired a criminal defense attorney and paid a $30k retainer.

Mercer Island, WA |

I pay my attorney by the hour. The charges were filed in 2010 and I've spent a year going back and forth in court with continuances, evidence motions and omnibus hearings. I paid my attorney another $20k in November 2011. Now my attorney is asking for another $20k to prepare for trial, which will be approx. 3 weeks. Can someone tell me how much a Class C felony case (including 3 week trial) costs in Washington State? This is getting very expensive and I'm not sure I can continue paying these fees.

Attorney Answers 4


Without knowing what you are charged with, the evidence against you, the number of witnesses, and your criminal record it's impossible to say anything about the case. If you want to shop around for another attorney, try calling a few in your area and get their opinion on the case.

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I was charged with cyberstalking for allegedly sending emails about my ex-husband's affair. It's a ridiculous case. I can't believe I've already spent $70k and haven't even gone to trial yet.

Derek Michael Smith

Derek Michael Smith


You need to talk to other attorneys in your area experienced in criminal defense. I know that experts in computer crime are expensive so that could be some of this cost, but you really, really need to start talking to someone about a second opinion if you are concerned about what is happening to your case.


My colleague's answer is correct. You need to talk to other attorneys in your local area who handle this type of case and learn what the standard fees are and what your options are. You might consider talking with your current attorney about your concerns as well and see if something mutually acceptable can be worked out.

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Use this website to find other criminal attorneys in your area and ask. Often attorneys will ask for an additional trial retainer.

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My colleagues answers are very good. Without any knowledge of the charges or the complexity of your case, I cannot comment on the fees being charged. If you have concerns about your existing attorney's representation or the fees you are being charged, check with other reputable attorneys for a second or third opinion. This site is a good reference site with several excellent attorneys to choose from.

Responses to questions on AVVO does not establish an attorney -client relationship.

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