Introduction: Our firm's areas of practice include: Family Law including divorce, child support, alimony, child custody matters and contempt; Probate matters including all issues involving wills, guardianship/conservatorship, and the formation or dissolution of trusts.
At The Law Office of J. Daniel Howard, we have three simple principles that guide everything we do.
First, we believe that every client that comes to us deserves an approach to their case that is tailored specifically to that client's individual needs and situation. We recognize that every case is different and that there is no "one size fits all" approach to these matters. We will work with you to identify the goals you wish to achieve. We will then work diligently to assure the best possible outcome for each client.
Second, we believe that every client deserves to be treated with the utmost respect. We understand that cases in our area of practice are some of the most personal, difficult issues a person may ever face. We will always listen to your concerns and address them openly and honestly. Our clients are not a file number or a dollar amount. They are real people dealing with difficult issues and they deserve someone that is going to work hard to make sure their interests are protected.
Last, but certainly not least, we believe that quality legal services should be affordable. For the first several years of my career, I worked for clients under the outdated hourly billing model that most attorney’s still use today. Under hourly billing, the client pays a large initial retainer (usually in excess of $5,000.00) as soon as they hire the attorney. Often, that retainer covers the first few weeks, or maybe even the first couple of months of the attorney’s work. But, with hourly billing, every activity an attorney or staff member does on a case costs the client money. Whether it is making a phone call, reviewing a document or drafting a pleading, the tab just keeps running.
The result of this is that many times a client that had to struggle to pay the initial retainer then receives a bill for thousands more a month or two into the case. The client is faced with either paying that bill in full or having their attorney withdraw from the case. The relationship between the attorney and client sours and the client is left with an additional $10,000 or $15,000 in costs that were not planned. Sadly, all to often the mounting legal fees become the primary factor in a client discontinuing a case or settling for much less than they should.
This method of billing always struck me as unfair and, quite frankly, absurd. From the first day I started practicing law, I decided that as soon as I had the opportunity to open my own firm, I would do things differently.
I provide top quality, personalized service to each client while offering the certainty of up front pricing. I offer flat fees for a wide variety of services that are tailored to your particular situation. Since the attorney’s fees will not change, I am able to provide them to you in our first email or call so you know what to expect.
In the areas of law I practice, Family Law and Probate, I usually meet people during a very difficult and emotional time in their lives. Often, these folks are facing a great deal of uncertainty. The last thing they need to be concerned with is whether or not they are going to be able to afford their attorney. My fee structure eliminates that concern.
So, if you are looking for a big firm experience along with the big firm cost, this is probably not the right firm for you. But, if you want compassionate, efficient representation that is focused on listening to you and helping to achieve your goals, I’d be happy to speak with you.