Should You Pay For an Initial Consultation with a DUI Lawyer?
There are lawyers who charge for an initial DUI consultation. Their reasoning is that their time is valuable (which is true), and also that if a person must pay for the consultation they are then more likely to hire the attorney.
Most DUI lawyers do offer free initial consultations to anybody who is in the market to hire a DUI lawyer. There are some lawyers who do charge a nominal fee for an initial consultatiton. If hired, this fee often gets applied to retainer fee in the case of a flat fee arrangement or to the initial stage in the case of a tiered flat fee arrangement. From lawyers who bill hourly, it is fair to expect to be charged for your initial meeting.
Some lawyers will set a time limit on the initial meeting. In some firms, the first 30 minutes is free. This gives you and the lawyer a chance to get a sense of eachother without a committment, but does not provide enough time for free advice.
We believe that nobody should have to pay to make a determination of whether they get along with the lawyer. That doesn’t mean that you are entitled to free advice. It means that you shouldn’t have to fork over money to find out that a lawyer is a jerk or not the right fit for you or your case.
Even the very top DUI lawyers in most every city that we are aware of offer free initial meetings to anybody who is serious about and has the means to hire a good private DUI attorney.
Therefore, we strongly recommend that you avoid paying just to see and shake hands with a DUI lawyer, but also caution you not to expect any private lawyer to give you free advice, a free second opinion when you are already represented or teach you how to represent yourself.