Terms of Service for Attorney Assisted Lawsuit Defense

SCOPE OF SERVICES

Client hires Attorney to provide legal services by assisting Client to defend himself or herself against a lawsuit by a creditor, including, upon client’s request, drafting documents for Client’s use. Attorney will not become “Counsel of Record” and will file no documents with the court. Attorney will not communicate directly with the opposing party or its counsel, or with the court. Attorney will provide those legal services reasonably required to assist Client under these circumstances. Client will take reasonable steps to keep Attorney informed of progress and to respond to Attorney’s inquiries.  This Agreement does not cover representation or assistance on appeal or in execution proceedings after judgment. Separate arrangements must be agreed to for those services. Services in any matter not described above will require a separate written agreement.

CLIENT’S DUTIES

Client agrees to be truthful with Attorney, to cooperate, to pay Attorney’s bills on time, and to keep Attorney advised of Client’s address, telephone number, email address. and whereabouts. Client will provide all documents and new information regarding the case to Attorney within 5 days of Client’s receipt. Client agrees that any rush work caused by Client not timely sharing documents and information with Attorney may result in Rush Fees being charged or may result in Attorney not being able to provide services.  Client will appear at all legal proceedings to represent himself or herself. Client understands that litigation involves numerous important deadlines. It is Client’s responsibility to keep a calendar of these deadlines. Attorney may assist Client in calculating deadlines upon request, but Attorney will not keep a calendar of these deadlines. Client agrees to communicate with Attorney using Attorney’s MyCase case management system. If Client chooses to end this service, Client agrees to provide Attorney 30 days written notice of cancellation through Attorney’s MyCase case management system.

FEES

Client agrees to pay a one-time setup fee of $90 and the first month’s legal fee of $119 for a total of $209* today. Monthly payments of $119* will continue thereafter until the end of the case, or until the client cancels, whichever comes first. Monthly fees are fully earned upon receipt. In return for these fees, Attorney will provide the following services:

  • Prepare Client’s Answer to Complaint (This is in response to the Summons & Complaint served on Client),
  • Advice and counseling by Attorney (up to 20 Minutes every month) via telephone or email/message,
  • Prepare Discovery (Standard Request for Production of Documents) for Client to mail to the debt collection attorney, requiring production of the debt collector’s file,
  • Prepare Client’s responses to Discovery demands which the debt collector might send to Client (This includes up to 12 questions each of Request for Production of Documents, Form Interrogatories, Special Interrogatories, and Request for Admissions),
  • Prepare Case Management Statement,
  • Prepare client for Case Management Conference,
  • One Settlement letter,
  • One “meet and confer” letter if there is a dispute about responses to Discovery demands,
  • Prepare Request for Identification of Witnesses and Evidence,
  • Prepare Client’s response to Request for Identification of Witness and Evidence,
  • Prepare objections to the debt collector’s evidence in preparation for trial (if necessary),
  • Prepare subpoena for the debt collector’s witness in preparation for trial (if necessary).
  • Cases above $25,000 require full service representation
  • Excluded Services: This service does not include representation at trial (Either Jury Trial or Non-jury Trial representation can be purchased separately, but is often not needed). This service does not include opposing a Motion for Summary Judgment, or opposing a Motion to Compel Responses to Discovery. This service does not include defending or taking any depositions.
  • You may close your case by giving us 30 days notice in writing.  Monthly fees will continue during the last 30 days of service.

These services are designed to cover the typical work required to defend oneself in a debt collection lawsuit in most cases up to the day before trial.  If additional work is needed or advised,  Attorney will first explain what is needed or advised and receive Client’s permission and payment in advance before performing any additional work.
Legal Fees and billing practices for additional work when approved by client:
Principal Attorney $300/hour
Associate Attorney $200/hour
Time for excessive advice and counseling by telephone or email/message will be charged.
Time is charged in minimum units of one-tenth (0.1) of an hour.

The following have higher minimum charges:
Excessive telephone calls with client: 0.2
Additional letters written for Client’s signature: 0.2
Additional documents prepared for Client to file with Court: 0.3