Free, brief preliminary consultation
The Law Office of Michael L. Rich (LOMLR) offers a free, brief preliminary consultation to new, prospective clients on cases within the areas of concentration listed on the home page. To schedule a free telephone consultation or when seeking a free email response the prospective client must provide LOMLR with their full name, postal address, email address, and telephone number, a few essential details about the case, and the full names of all parties to the legal dispute.
If the inquirer is seeking an answer to a process question or to figure out if they want a more detailed consultation with Attorney Rich, a 20-minute telephone consultation will be scheduled or LOMLR will respond by email. If more time or an additional email response is requested, the subsequent call or email will be billed at LOMLR’s secondary consultation rate. (See Secondary Consultation section.)
Disclaimers: 1) The free, brief initial consultation is not intended to establish an attorney-client relationship. LOMLR does not become your attorney except by expressly entering into a representation agreement. 2) Legal opinions provided on the spur of the moment, with limited background information exchanged, and without specific, fact-based research should not be relied upon for non-trivial legal matters. LOMLR urges you to seek a complete, detailed consultation with Attorney Rich or the attorney(s) to whom he refers you, rather than relying on the general concepts presented and discussed during a brief, initial consultation.
Upon reaching the conclusion that a new, prospective client needs an attorney or a more detailed consultation, we will arrange a secondary consultation. The secondary consultation will usually be in person but may be by email, telephone, or video conference. The secondary consultation includes:
• Determining if LOMLR is the appropriate legal resource for the particular matter,
The charge for the secondary consultation is $150.00 per hour, $75.00 per half hour. That is lower than the lowest representation rate on LOMLR’s sliding scale fee schedule. (See it here: sliding scale fees.) It gives the prospective client valuable attorney time while discounting for the off-the-cuff nature of the information that will be provided. And it averages out the time spent on substantive discussions with the time spent negotiating financial matters.
It has generally been our experience that secondary consultations in Children’s and Family Law matters take about one and one-half hours. Therefore, the cost will be approximately $225.00; more if detailed file materials are sent in advance or if attorney and client agree that more time is necessary. The first $225.00 of estimated fee is to be paid at the time of the in person consultation and in advance of any telephone, video, or email consultation.
In most cases it will be worthwhile to have the attorney review documents and become familiar with the issues before the secondary consultation. If requested be sure to send the relevant documents to LOMLR in advance of your consultation. You also might find it helpful both in preparation for your consultation and in your preparation of your case to keep a journal, write a chronology, or prepare a summary of the events and contacts with the relevant people involved in your case. If you have done so or can do so in advance of the secondary consultation, send those documents as well. Note that attorney time spent reviewing file documents and narratives in preparation for the secondary or any subsequent consultations will be billed at the secondary consultation rate. Fees for advance preparation must also be paid at the time of the in person consultation or in advance of any telephone, email, or video consultations.
Disclaimers: 1) The secondary consultation is not intended to establish an attorney-client relationship. LOMLR does not become your attorney except by expressly entering into a representation agreement. 2) Legal opinions provided on the spur of the moment, with limited background information exchanged, and without specific, fact-based research should not be relied upon for non-trivial legal matters. LOMLR urges you to retain Attorney Rich or the attorney(s) to whom he refers you, so that you may have fully researched and considered legal advice, tailored to your situation, and counsel to carry out the representation.
There will be a charge of $30.00 for appointments that are not kept without being cancelled before the close of the preceding business day.
Extended Case Evaluation / Request for Representation
The secondary consultation often results in the signing of a representation agreement, but is occasionally followed by a period of investigation and case evaluation. This may be necessary in order for Atty. Rich to determine if or under what conditions he wishes to accept the request for his representation or other legal services. Neither Atty. Rich nor the prospective client is under any obligation to enter into a representation agreement at the secondary consultation. Concluding the secondary consultation with a request for an extended case evaluation or representation will obligate the prospective client to compensate LOMLR at the agreed upon rate from the sliding scale fee schedule for the time spent on investigation and case evaluation. Advance payment of an estimated amount may be requested and will need to be paid before the investigation, case evaluation, or representation will proceed.
As Abraham Lincoln is reported to have said, “A lawyer’s time and advice are his stock in trade.“
I look forward to meeting with you.
Michael L. Rich, Esq.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.
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