One of the hardest things to swallow when getting paid from a non-paying client that you collect from is the reality that usually you have to pay the legal fees to actually collect your money.
When is it most likely your delinquent customer will pay the legal fees?
- When negotiating a settlement
- If collecting from the client is a longer-term process
- Before going to trial
- Before appealing
- If the case involves the Supreme Court
Surprisingly, even if the company who owes you money agrees to pay the legal fees in writing, you are not guaranteed to have legal fees paid.
Why not, you may be asking? The Court will make its own determination as to the amount of a reasonable attorneys fee award. The lower Courts generally award only a few hundred dollars after a live hearing and testimony by your attorney. Most often the delay in obtaining the fee award does not make economic sense when you are rushing to Judgment.
Even with a lot of hard work, getting paid for legal fees is difficult, and the amount you get may be disappointing.
The clients we work with have often expressed how satisfying it is to get paid the money owed to them, even if they don’t get a large amount of the legal fees paid by the client. In most cases, clients tell us that paying for our services is more than worth the benefit of getting paid what is owed them by the client.