I am wondering if there are any attorneys for cayuga county that do a retainer fee of $1,000 or less. This is a custody matter and the court date is for next Tuesday.
What does that fee cover? It seems very low especially if you are having a hearing. Hearings are won in the office with good preparation.
I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been handling criminal defense and personal injury cases for over 22 years. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails, is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.
Please realize the government has made lawyer fees exorbitant by its testing, licensing and disciplining of attorneys. You face a filtered and concentrated clique of people who command top dollar for services you require.
Turning to discipline for a moment, the typical lawyer would never accept $1,000 as a fee for a trial because any complaints and claims of malpractice would take time to defend above and beyond the $1,000. And such claims become highly likely because the lawyer has no time to prepare for a trial and may not have any evidence prepared to present during trial. This is called trying a case "by the seat of the lawyer's pants." Crisis management is the resulting process, not a cogent delivery of a case - especially one involving a child's custody!
This becomes a malpractice trap and $1,000 simply will not cover the case. For most attorneys, I would be surprised they would take such a case for any fee. Lawyers are not plug and play devices one hires a few days before trial. Cases are won in the office between appearances, and documents may play a huge role in the outcome. Here comes $1,000 and a case on Tuesday? That's a total loss and lawyer is in everyone's sites as a result.
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