Attorney Fees / negotiating


I was hoping to go through my divorce without the need for an attorney, but it looks like that will not be possible. I went to family court and spent a day watching all the divorce attorneys in action and picked one that seemed to get a lot of respect from the judges, and knows what he is doing. ( Thanks to some “how to pick an attorney” advice from a lawyer friend in CA). Anyway - his retainer fee is $2500 which he basically said is about 10hrs of his time. What do I need to negotiate with him, and make sure I’m getting out of this before I hire him? What detailed billing questions do I need to ask etc. ? Any help is appreciated!


Each attorney bills differently, and most bill for the hours their paralegals and assistants spend on the case as well. There is no way for the attorney to predict how far his retainer fee will get you as it depends on the complexity of the case and the level of contention.