Times have been pretty tight recently for many Brits, and any unexpected expenses – including lawyer’s fees – can seem catastrophic. In this article, we’re sharing tips on how to save money on lawyer’s fees in 2023.
Lawyer’s fees can make a serious dent in your finances at the best of times, let alone in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis. Bristol, Bath, or Blackheath local solicitors will always strive to be transparent about fees and potential costs, but they can still mount up over time.
In this article, we’re sharing our 7 ways to save money on lawyer fees in 2023.
There are a number of times when you may need a lawyer, and these include:
- Child custody issues
- Buying/selling a property
- Falling victim to a crime
Most people will find themselves requiring the services of a lawyer at least once during their lifetime and, sadly, few of us budget for this in our daily lives.
Ways to save money on lawyer fees in 2023
Needing a lawyer is often a stressful time and it’s easy to panic and rush into the process, but this can end up costing you significantly more than necessary. In this section, we’re sharing tips on ways to save money on lawyer’s fees:
In some cases, such as family mediation or the risk of homelessness, you may be entitled to legal aid from the government. It’s always worth checking if this is the case before going ahead and hiring a solicitor.
Whatever the circumstances leading you to need a lawyer may be, there’s a good chance that a friend or family member has been through the same thing. For this reason, a good starting point is to ask around for recommendations, as this may save you a considerable amount of legwork as well as cash.
Lawyers generally charge by the hour – which means that the more work they do on your behalf, the more it will cost you. You can help to keep your legal costs down by getting organised before reaching out to a solicitor.
Make sure that you have all the necessary documents ready to present to your lawyer in a timely manner, as this can significantly reduce the number of billable hours.
4. It’s not always good to talk
It’s natural to see your lawyer as a lifeline when you’re going through a stressful time, and you may feel tempted to call them every time something occurs to you or there’s a new development. Don’t.
Each time your lawyer spends time with you on a call this is chargeable, and costs can soon rack up. Instead, try to collate any new information or queries into one call at less regular intervals in order to keep your fees as low as possible.
Most of us aren’t used to dealing with solicitors and we can therefore find the process a little intimidating. While this is normal, it’s important to remember that your solicitor is working for you and that you’re entitled to try to negotiate. For example, you may ask for a small reduction in fees or for an increased number of free calls to help you stretch your budget further.
6. Sometimes it is good to talk
If you’re hiring a lawyer for an issue which involves another individual – for example, a divorce, child custody or a neighbour dispute – it’s a good idea to try to agree as much as possible with that person before contacting a solicitor. If the two parties are able to reach an agreement on at least some basic principles, this can save both parties a considerable amount of money.
7. Shop around
As with any other kind of service, lawyer’s fees can vary drastically and so you should always shop around to make sure that you’re getting a competitive price. In many cases, your contact with your lawyer will be by email and telephone, which means that you don’t necessarily need to hire somebody local. This can save you a lot of cash if, for example, you live in London but hire a lawyer who is based in a less expensive part of the country.
Hiring the services of a solicitor can be a significant investment, and it’s important to make sure that you’re getting the most from your money. Shopping around and checking out Google reviews is a good place to start, but that’s only half the battle.
You’ll also need to make sure that you have all of your ducks in a row in terms of making sure that you have all of the relevant documentation and information to hand. This will cut down on the time that you need to spend speaking with your lawyer, as time is very much money.
In the unlikely event that you feel that your lawyer has charged you too much or that the fees charged are unfair, you should first speak with your lawyer as it may be that a mistake has been made. If this is not the case, you can escalate things by contacting the Solicitors Regulation Authority who will be able to advise you on your rights and any possible next steps.