When you enter into a retainer agreement with our firm, we will help you with every step of the legal process, from communications and preparation of disclosure to representation in court. We will discuss a range of dispute resolution processes with you, such as mediation and arbitration. We use a team approach so that we can offer you assistance from more senior lawyers, junior lawyers, and law clerks to help you through the process as cost-effectively as possible.
As part of our commitment to transparency about fees, if your matter is headed to a trial or an appeal, we will talk with you about a detailed budget for the expected work involved, and a payment plan. Discussions about fees form an important part of our preparation for litigation and help you to assess whether proceeding to litigation is the right step for you.
Custom Retainer and Fee Agreements
We will offer a limited scope retainer in situations where a traditional retainer is not appropriate or affordable for you, which allows us to help you with discrete tasks such as the preparation of court documents, limited court appearances, or consultations with you about particular steps in litigation. With limited scope assistance, you may be able to handle the whole case yourself, except for a few legal issues where a lawyer can help you. We will talk with you about the specific assistance that we can offer in your particular case.
In some cases, people hire us to prepare an opinion about their options or their chances of success in litigation, or to act for them in relation to a particular task, and we are able to offer payment of a flat rate for this work rather than billing on an hourly basis.
When you come in for an initial consultation, you will pay an hourly rate for a meeting with one of our lawyers. This step alone will provide you with valuable information and strategic advice about how you can approach your family law issue.
We work with very experienced law clerks. They are trained professionals who share similar skills with paralegals, and have a wealth of experience with the family law system. Law clerks are supervised by lawyers at the firm, and can assist you with preparing your disclosure, drafting and filing court documents, preparing support calculations, and many other aspects of your file.
Several of the lawyers at our office accept Legal Aid certificates for family law and child protection matters. We accept Legal Aid certificates on a case-by-case basis, and we encourage you to find out whether you qualify for a Legal Aid certificate and to ask us if we can assist.
We are committed to creating a family justice system that is accessible for anyone who needs it. Our lawyers actively participate in law reform initiatives and other advocacy for affordable, accessible, access to justice.
We do a variety of legal work for free (“pro bono”) where we believe it is necessary to advance equality issues or assist low-income litigants. Lawyers at our office helped to found, and continue to administer pro bono programs, including pro bono family law appeal and child protection appeal projects.