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Most other law firms typically bill by some increment of an hour. For example, other law firms may bill in 0.1 hour increments (i.e., 6 minutes). The justification for this rounding convention is that it is economically impractical to more accurately track time spent on a matter - we strongly disagree. Rounding up, even in 6 minute increments, can have the effect of illegally and unethically inflating a client's bill. See, Ryan v. Allied Interstate, Inc., 882 F.Supp.2d 628 (S.D.N.Y. 2012) (a partner made several 0.1 entries on the same day for checking ECF email confirmations at a rate of $425 per hour). Moreover, with the ease of today's mobile technology, economic impracticality is no longer a valid excuse. We use the professional version of HoursTracker® to accurately record when an attorney begins and stops working on a matter. All time records are set to be rounded down to the nearest minute. Thus, the client - not the law firm - receives the benefit of any rounding.
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Phone Calls & E-mails
There are few things more annoying than going through an invoice for legal services only to see 20 charges for 1-2 minute phone calls or for reading and sending a quick e-mail. Each 2 minute phone call, if billed in increments of 0.1 hours, can quickly add up to two (2) full hours of an attorney's billing rate - mostly due to rounding in favor of the law firm. Law firms justify this practice by highlighting that numerous phone calls and e-mails can add up to more than ten (10) hours a week of lost revenue (for the law firm) and productivity (for the attorney), and that without imposing a cost onto clients, weekly phone calls and e-mails can potentially become abused by clients. We do not bill clients for phone calls or e-mails to the extent they are related to gathering factual information or communicating updates on a matter. Time is billed for phone calls or e-mails only to the extent they involve "legal questions or advice."
Free Initial Consultation
We cannot tell you whether you may have a legal remedy available for you to pursue through some legal action, what the value or nature of that remedy is, or whether your legal issue is most appropriately handled by us unless we first have a comprehensive understanding of the facts and potential legal theories available to you. The purpose of the free initial consultation is to allow us to determine whether or how we may represent you regarding your specific legal issues. Now, your specific legal issue may be time-sensitive, and you may be putting yourself in a less legally favorable position by delaying consulting with an attorney. Therefore, if you have any questions or simply want to know more information about your particular matter, contact us to schedule a free initial consultation. If we cannot handle your matter, we will be more than happy to direct you to another law firm in the area that we believe is capable of obtaining a substantially similar result for your particular legal issue or matter.