Pro bono (free of charge) work
I allocate 25% of my professional time to representing deserving or vulnerable clients free of charge. For the first half of calendar 2017, that budget has already been consumed.
I have a range of very affordable fixed fees for dismissal cases. Details are available upon request.
Telephone and other consultations
Most often I work by telephone consultation which enables me to keep my fees at a fraction of my legal colleagues and almost all of my clients, whether employers or an employees, find this much more convenient and certainly quicker than face to face meetings. I have never once found telephone consultations to be less useful than physical meetings. I also have a range of inexpensive fixed fees for various stages of legal actions such as unfair and unlawful dismissal and for liability or recovery of statutory and contractual entitlements.
My fees are ordinarily fully tax deductible for both employees and employers. The fee for my standard telephone consultation of an hour is $250 plus GST ie $275 ($280.95 if paid by credit card or PayPal because of the credit card company’s surcharge) and is conducted by telephone which has a number of benefits for a client including convenience. It is very unusual for a client to express a preference for a face to face meeting, although such consultations are available if required and justified, but they are slightly dearer. I also offer a brief telephone consultation for up to 30 minutes for a fee of $125 plus GST (ie $137.50), ($140.63 if paid by credit card or PayPal) but it is not available if there is any reading to be undertaken, and caution should be exercised when booking a brief consult because more often than not it is difficult to solve an employment legal issue in that time. However that is a matter entirely for you to judge.
Subject to that rider, I will provide a summary of the legal options which are open to a client during the consult, together with an analysis of the prospects of success, the risks and the likely costs. I challenge anyone to find better value for money in the legal system.
Receipted tax invoices are provided after the consultation.
Telephone consultations are available between 8 am and 5 pm every day except Saturdays. Sundays are very popular with employers and employees for obvious reasons.
Options for payment of fees
All my fees are payable in advance either by electronic transfer, internet banking, cash deposit, credit card or PayPal.
Fixed consultation fees and other custom fees can be paid by credit card or PayPal via the Payments tab of my web site or by telephone with me. Non-fixed fees can also be paid by credit card or PayPal by telephone. There is a small surcharge for credit card payments as you can see above.
Advisory work and representation
Most of my fees other than a range of fixed fees are negotiable. Most of my clients opt for fixed fees so that they have certainty of budget. Otherwise litigation is notorious for uncertainty of duration and cost. I also have a range of fixed fees for Fair Work Commission conferences and hearings and my standard hourly rate for representation ranges between $250 and $315 plus GST depending upon urgency and complexity.
My legal colleagues charge between $750 and $1100 per hour.
I do not offer no win no fee services, and have never been impressed by practitioners who do. Nor do I provide free legal advice. You get what you pay for as the saying goes.
For proceedings in the Fair Work Commission or Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission, I offer a choice between fees which are fixed or calculated by time. The fixed fees cover my advice and representation for the various stages of work for matters in the Commissions.
Typically though, many employment law issues can be resolved by a legal letter, if necessary a demand, for which I also have a range of fixed fees.
Having decided to hang up my boots (and my horse hair barrister’s wig) after more than 40 years working as a lawyer, I am not permitted to represent a client in the Federal Court, but as a registered industrial agent I can do so in the above Commissions, and at a fraction of the cost of a lawyer.
Fine print and legal stuff
My fees are payable in advance, except by express agreement. The registration through the web site of a preference for a particular day and time does not secure that time and appointments are not confirmed until payment is made and a day and time is agreed. Until then, available slots are open until secured as above.
Fees paid for consultations are not refundable in the event of a cancellation unless at least 24 hours’ notice is provided. Booked consultations are not secured until payment has been received and tentative bookings will available to others who pay first. Fees paid for consultations are not refundable pro rata if we can resolve the issue in less time than is booked but I do exercise a discretion to provide free further advice to complete the time booked. A payment of fees constitutes acceptance of these terms. If you book a brief telephone consultation it is likely that I will need to strictly manage the time because of other appointments booked before and after. Self evidently, I cannot guarantee to be able to provide a particular time, but I will do my very best.
Telephone consultations start on time and it is the client’s responsibility to call at that time and not be late.