Do you charge a consultation fee?
Why don't you offer a free consultation?
This office charges a consultation fee for family law cases for several reasons.
We say our consultation fee is a symbolic fee because it is a fairly small amount given what you can expect to pay for representation by any attorney in a family law matter. The payment of a consultation fee indicates to us that you are serious about hiring this office and can afford representation. It also show us you respect and value our time.
Since family law is an area of law where the majority of parties represent themselves in court, many people that cannot afford an attorney or have no real intention of hiring an attorney contact this office. Many are looking for free legal advice and step-by-step instructions on how to do things without paying an attorney. As this is a busy law practice with many clients who value and pay for our services, people who are blatantly looking for free legal advice take away from our ability to serve our many paying clients and reduce the spare time we have to spend with our families.
If you cannot afford to retain an attorney, we suggest you contact the family law self-help center in your county.
Why do some other family law attorneys offer a free consultation and you don't?
You should truly ponder this question. How often do you get something for free that is that great? And why would a business person want to give you something for free that they charge hundreds of dollars an hour for? Here are the answers to those questions.
Generally speaking, what you're likely to get out of a free consultation in a family law case is something along the lines of an infomercial (those long commercials you see in the middle of the night on TV where they try to sell you on their product) where an attorney tries to convince you to hire them without giving you any real substantive legal advice. Think about it for a moment. If an attorney could teach you how to do things on your own within the time constaints of a consultation (which isn't likely), you wouldn't need to hire that attorney. Have no mistake about it, law offices are for profit businesses. During a free consultation, expect an attorney to attempt to persuade you to give them a substantial amount of money.
As soon as an attorney who is offering a free consultation catches on that you can't afford the large amount of money they want or are looking for information on how to do it yourself, expect that attorney to immediately lose interest and to rush you out the door learning nothing more than how much it costs to retain them.
In family law (unlike other areas of law) it is NOT the industry standard to offer free consultations (this is because most people cannot afford an attorney and, therefore, must represent themselves in family law cases). Most reputable family law attorneys charge a consultation fee to avoid wasting their time giving consultations to people without the financial ability or intent to hire them. That said, you should wonder why an attorney would choose to give away their services for free while many others, like this office, do not.
If you pay for a consultation at the Law Offices of Justin Kirk Tabayoyon, you won't get a sales pitch on how cheap things will be or how great your outcome will be. Things might not be cheap or this office's opinion about the outcome of your situation might not be what you wanted to hear. Whatever your situation, you will get an honest assessment of your case from an attorney and solid legal advice during a consultation with this office. The business philosophy of this office is that when a sales pitch does not meet reality, clients are disappointed. And when clients are disappointed, that isn't good for business in the long term. We don't want disappointed clients. We want referrals. If anything, expect this office to underpromise and over deliver in terms of results.
Expect our legal fees to be expensive (yes, that's the truth) yet highly competitive with what other lawyers in the area are charging. We are sorry to burst your bubble and be honest with you that it is highly unlikely you will find a laywer that is both good and cheap. On the other hand, it is very likely that you will find lots of lawyers that are expensive and not that good. This office routinely encounters other lawyers who are not that good at what they do. While there are lots of family law attorneys out there, there are only a few that this office would recommend if we were unable to accept the case. If you hire this office you won't get that virtually non-existent, mythical lawyer that is both good and cheap, but rest assured you're hiring a good lawyer and getting a good value for your dollar compared to what you might spend at another law firm.
You will get true legal advice even if you don't retain this office. This office will explain to you how much your legal fees might be without trying to sell you on hiring this office. If you can't afford an attorney, a licensed California attorney will give you legal advice on how to proceed within the time limit of the consultation.
Okay. I understand why you charge a consultation fee and that you cannot tell me how much my case could end up costing without a consultation. But I'm not sure if I can afford your services. What is the minimum I can expect to pay?
See our answer in this FAQ.
Serving Solano County, Contra Costa County, and the Entire Bay Area.