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Ways to Save Money on Your Child Custody Case in Texas, Part Two

Navigating the complex terrain of a child custody battle can be both emotionally and financially draining. Understanding the cost of custody battle is essential for anyone embarking on this challenging journey. From attorney fees to court costs, the financial implications of these legal proceedings can be significant. This guide aims to provide comprehensive insights into managing these costs effectively, offering practical advice and strategies for those facing a custody case. We delve into various aspects of legal billing, payment options, and cost-efficient approaches, particularly focusing on the practices and policies of the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC.

The Costs of Child Custody Battles

In our last blog post, we began to discuss the topic of the costs of a child custody battle. Specifically, we went over concerns you may be having in advance of a child custody case, as well as how a family law attorney bills clients.

The Initial Retainer Fee

The initial charge for a child custody case with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, is a retainer fee. You’ll notice that we do not charge for an initial consultation. In one of these consultations, you can ask questions about your case, our office, and anything else you would like. We want you to feel knowledgeable and confident as you begin your search for an attorney to represent you and your family.

Payment Options for Retainer Fees

Today, we will continue that discussion with additional information that you will hopefully find helpful in your search for a family law attorney. To start, what if you can’t afford to pay the entire retainer fee before your case is set to begin?

I can tell you that the amount of the retainer fee can vary significantly depending on the attorney you are interested in hiring to represent you in your child custody case. What can be even more confusing is that it is not always a situation where the more you pay, the more you get as far as service is concerned. Some great attorneys charge an arm and a leg for a retainer, and some bad attorneys likely charge an arm and a leg as well. Your job as a consumer of legal services is to interview as many attorneys as you can, identify what it will cost to hire each, and decide who you feel comfortable with and whose price-point suits your budget the best.

Financial Constraints

If you are in a position where you are unable to pay a family law attorney’s retainer fee comfortably, then you should know that most people are in the same position as you. The majority of families do not have a few thousand dollars lying around for use in a situation like this. You will likely need to make cuts in your family budget elsewhere to have the money necessary to hire your attorney.

Full Retainer Payment

The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, typically requests that you pay the entire retainer upfront in a lump sum. We do this for a few reasons. The most important is that we want to begin working on your case immediately. Research, draft, and file your documents in court will take time for the attorney you are working with. Consequently, we must ensure that you have paid your retainer in full so that we can compensate the attorney for the work performed. Without a full retainer, we may have to wait until you develop the remaining portion before beginning your case.

Flexible Payment Arrangements

If you know ahead of time that you will have trouble coming up with the entire retainer fee for our office, please let our staff know. This does not mean that there is no way that we can take your case. We can discuss your circumstances and explore potential compromises regarding payment. We would be honored to represent you and your family, recognizing that the expenses can be substantial when contemplating the type of child custody case you aim to pursue.

Minimizing Costs through Settlement

If your goal is to minimize the costs of your child custody battle (and why wouldn’t you want to do this), it is a good idea to approach your case with settlement in mind. Not every case will allow you to resolve the outstanding issues before a trial but many will.

Settlement Potential

The issues you and your ex-spouse couldn’t agree on before filing your child custody case can often be resolved with the assistance of your attorneys.

Attorney’s Role in Settlement

Wait, what was that last statement that I made? That attorney can HELP your case settle rather than proceed into a long, seemingly endless march towards a distant trial? Despite what people like to think about attorneys, we want your case resolved with as little strife and argument as possible. It does you no good as a client to go through the stress and difficulties of a child custody case when a settlement is possible. We, as your attorney, have no reason to devote time, money, and resources to a case that should be settled early in the process.

Additionally, you are hiring an attorney to put someone between you and your ex-spouse. It is easy to get upset, emotional, and downright angry at your ex-spouse when there is an issue related to your child. The history between the two of you may make it so that you cannot communicate well and cannot work together amicably to settle your issues on your own. Hiring an attorney allows you to filter your frustrations through another person who can often work out the issues with your assistance.

Alternative Methods to Minimize Costs

If you cannot solve the issues informally with your attorney helping out, what other methods are out there to help you minimize the costs of your child custody battle?

Cost Cutting Tip: Attend Mediation

The attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, are big proponents of mediation. Mediation is where you and your ex-spouse (plus your attorneys) attend a settlement negotiation session at the mediator’s office. With each party in their room at the office, the mediator acts as a ping pong ball and bounces back and forth between the rooms communicating settlement offers. Along the way, your mediator can let you know how strong your arguments are and how a judge is likely to rule.

The majority of the time, the mediator you choose will be a family law attorney herself so that she can offer her perspective on any issues involved in your case. For instance, if you and your attorney are convinced that a judge would rule in your favor regarding an increase of child support, but you’ve failed to consider a particular issue, the mediator can point this out to you. Most mediators have experienced attorneys and have had cases with most judges in your area. This is an invaluable resource to tap into, as well as a money-saving tool that you should explore in your custody case.

Prepare in Advance

If you can begin collecting any documents relevant to your child custody case in advance, this will save time and save you money. Your attorney will need to read through these documents, so the better you can organize them, the less time your attorney will spend doing so. Having them ready at the outset of your case can save your attorney the trouble of waiting on you to collect them as your case proceeds, and other issues arise as well.

Representatives and Advocates

If you are considering whether or not to pursue a child custody case, please consider contacting the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC. We offer free consultations with one of our licensed family law attorneys and meet with you six days a week.

Ebook

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Other Articles you may be interested in:

  1. 12 Texas Custody & Conservatorship Battle Tips
  2. Child Custody Basics in Texas
  3. Do I Have to Pay Child Support if I Have Joint Custody of My Child in Texas?
  4. Child Custody Basics in Texas
  5. Are Dads at a Disadvantage when trying to win 50/50 custody in a Texas Divorce?
  6. Sole Managing Conservator in a Child Custody Case in Texas?
  7. Help!! My Ex-Spouse Kidnapped my Child
  8. How Much Will My Texas Child Custody Case Cost?
  9. When Can a Minor Child Weigh in on Custody Decisions in Texas?
  10. Child Custody Geographic Restrictions in Texas

Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC | Houston, Texas Child Custody Lawyers

The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, routinely handles matters that affect children and families. If you have questions regarding child custody, it’s important to speak with one of our Houston, TX child custody lawyers right away to protect your rights.

Our child custody lawyers in Houston, TX, are skilled at listening to your goals during this trying process and developing a strategy to meet those goals. Contact Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC handles child custody cases in Houston, Texas, Cypress, Klein, Humble, Kingwood, Tomball, The Woodlands, Houston, the FM 1960 area, or surrounding areas, including Harris County, Montgomery County, Liberty County, Chambers County, Galveston County, Brazoria County, Fort Bend County, and Waller County.