How much does an immigration lawyer cost?

How much does an immigration lawyer cost?

Immigration lawyers offer many payment options, namely

Hourly rates. Most immigration lawyers charge between $100 and $700 per hour for their services. Hourly rates are most common when a lawyer represents a client in immigration proceedings, such as expulsion proceedings. This fee arrangement is due to the fact that it is impossible to predict the lawyer’s time commitment during the client’s court proceedings and therefore calculate the full cost.
Flat fee. Many immigration lawyers offer fixed fees for various services. A lawyer is likely to offer a fixed fee when the benefit is clearly defined and it is relatively easy to predict the time commitment required. A lawyer may ask for a flat fee of between $2,000 and $10,000 for certain types of visa applications, such as family visa applications.
Under these circumstances, the fee is usually non-refundable – you are paying a lawyer to submit a considered application on your behalf, not for a guarantee that your application will be approved. The price will be the same regardless of the decision on your application.
Initial consultation. Immigration lawyers’ approaches to consultation vary. Some offer consultations by telephone and some request a nominal fee (on average $50 to $100), regardless of whether the consultation takes place over the phone or in the lawyer’s office.
Another factor you should consider is the opportunity cost of not having an immigration lawyer. If the lawyer you are considering for the job is competent, not hiring one may reduce your chances of receiving immigration benefits.

Remember, you don’t always get what you pay for when it comes to immigration lawyers – some of the most budget-friendly lawyers may be some of the best and some of the most expensive may be some of the worst. Research each of the lawyers you are considering carefully and price should only be one factor.

Dangerous points

If you don’t know what to look for, working with the wrong lawyer can incur huge hidden costs. Below are some dangerous points to look out for:

Does the lawyer have legal malpractice insurance? Generally, states do not require lawyers to have legal malpractice insurance – in fact, only Oregon requires that all lawyers have this type of insurance. Because of legal malpractice insurance, a lawyer can raise the price to pay the monthly premiums, but it will also protect you if he makes a mistake.
Is his fee agreement clear? Read it carefully and have another lawyer read it if necessary to avoid unpleasant surprises in the future. Be especially careful to look for any discrepancies between what the lawyer tells you in person and what you read in his fee contract. If there are discrepancies, the terms of the service contract are likely to take precedence over the verbal information.
Is the lawyer promising too much? You should turn down any lawyer who guarantees success. Responsible lawyers do not work with certainty, only probability.

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