Our General Terms of Service
Thank you for considering us to represent you. This document provides the general terms of service by which we represent our clients.
Please remember that we do not presently represent you, and that no attorney-client relationship is formed until an attorney from our office specifically agrees to represent you on a specific legal matter.
Should this occur, we will present you with a letter which will discuss the terms by which our office has agreed to represent you, on that matter and in any future matter for which you may request our services.
At such time as we may agree to represent you, we will provide you with an explanation of how we will charge for our services, and our best estimate of the cost of our work, based on the circumstances as you have presented them.
Unless there is an unanticipated change in circumstances, the fees we charge will not exceed the estimate we provide. Regardless of any such change in circumstances, our office will not incur additional charges on your behalf without your prior consent. Your satisfaction with our services is important to us. Please let us know promptly if you have any questions regarding any aspect of the matters our firm is handling for you.
Conflicts of Interest
We may only represent clients when our representation of one client does not put us in conflict with any other client. At the time we begin representation of our clients we ask them to list possible adverse interests, which we clear for conflict purposes. As we represent you, it is important that you reconsider all of the interests that are involved to be certain that you have advised us fully.
If we determine that, in our judgment, a conflict of interest does exist, we will notify all affected clients and proceed in a manner consistent with the ethical standards of our profession. It is important that you understand that conflicts of interest may prevent us from representing you in present or future matters.
Fee for Legal Services
Our fees for legal services range depending on the staff or attorney involved and the level of complexity of the project. As you request our services we will attempt to provide a reasonable estimate of the costs involved. Please keep in mind that this will be only an estimate and that, depending on the time required and the complexity of the action, and changes in circumstances, actual fees and expenses may exceed this estimate. We will also advise you before we do any work that will substantially increase the approximate amount of fees.
Additional expenses may include, but are not limited to, filing fees, deposition charges, and extraordinary travel expenses, long distance telephone charges, copying costs, and postal or delivery charges. Further, our office may use the services of additional attorneys and other professionals, either directly as employees or as independent contractors, on your behalf.
Statements and Finance Charges
We will bill you approximately monthly, depending on the amount of work that was done on your file during that period of time. Unless you have made other arrangements, we expect payment or replenishment of your retainer within 30 days of the date of our monthly statement of fees, costs, and expenses from our firm. If our office does not receive prompt payment, interest will accrue on the unpaid balance of fees and costs owed at the rate of one percent (1%) per month, and we may suspend work on your matter. You may also make arrangements to pay our invoices by credit card, including Visa, Mastercard, and American Express. There is an additional $25.00 charge for any returned checks.
From time to time we may request a retainer for our estimated fees and costs. If you have deposited a retainer with our firm, we will hold your funds in our Lawyer's Trust Account. We will provide you with a monthly statement of fees, costs, and expenses. When we mail you the monthly statement, we will apply the funds to fees earned, costs, and expenses incurred. Depending on the arrangements we have made, we may ask you to replenish the amount of your retainer. You are also responsible for paying fees, costs, and expenses in excess of the funds that we hold.
In the event you should fail to pay legal fees and costs when due, you agree to pay all costs of collection, including but not limited to collection agency fees, court costs, and reasonable attorneys' fees paid in pursuit of collection.
Cooperation in Representation
Our objective is to provide our clients with conscientious, competent, and diligent service. In order for us to represent you effectively, it is important that you cooperate with us and others working on your case by providing us with complete and honest information, promptly responding to all communication, keeping appointments, producing documents, attending related events, and making payments. In the event that you fail to meet any of your obligations under our agreement with you, our firm may terminate our representation in any pending matters between our firm and you. However, termination of representation does not affect your obligation to pay for accrued legal fees and costs incurred before termination.
We will send you copies of all documents, correspondences, and other information throughout this matter. These copies will be your file copies. We will also keep the information in a file in our office. The file in our office will be our firm's file, and all of the work performed will be our firm's work product.
If you are transferring your file to another law firm from us, you need to remember that you will have already been sent copies of your file during our work for you. You should keep them organized, as this may make such a transfer to another law firm quicker and cheaper. If you have not kept the copies we have sent you, or if you otherwise request us to provide copies, you may be billed for the time and cost of copying and preparing the materials for transfer.
When we have completed all the legal work necessary for your case, we will close your file and upon your request return original documents to you. We archive our estate planning files until our client's death. We then close the estate planning file when the estate administration is complete.
We store our closed files for approximately ten (10) years. We will destroy the file after that period of time unless you instruct us in writing now to keep it longer.
No Warranty of Results
While we will work diligently to represent you, it is important that you understand that our firm has not made any representations, assurances or guarantees regarding the outcome or any consequences connected with your representation. There are no implied or express warranties given by us, other than to do our very best work in representing you.
Our agreement to represent our clients is to be governed by the laws of the State of Oregon. Any action, proceeding or appeal on any matter arising out of this agreement is to be maintained in the courts located in Clackamas County, Oregon. If any provision of our general terms of service is contrary to, prohibited by, or held invalid by a court of law, then that provision shall be deemed inapplicable and omitted but shall not invalidate the remaining provisions of our agreement to represent you.
We appreciate the trust you have placed in us by considering our firm to assist you. If you would like to consult with us further regarding possible legal representation, please contact our office.
Thank you for the opportunity to be of continuing service.