How to Ask Your CT Criminal Lawyer About Cost and Legal Fees

How to Ask Your CT Criminal Lawyer About Cost and Legal Fees

Under the United States Constitution, anyone accused of a criminal offense is entitled to legal counsel for their defense. Part of the promise provided by the Constitution is that if you are unable to afford a CT criminal lawyer, one will be provided for you.

Defendants that can afford a CT criminal defense lawyer frequently choose to hire a private law firm. Criminal defense lawyers, like Alexander Schwartz, bring an extensive amount of experience and knowledge to your defense, and there are other important benefits to hiring a private lawyer for your criminal case in CT.

Why Hire a Private CT Criminal Lawyer for Your Defense?

There are several reasons a defendant may engage a CT criminal lawyer at a firm, such as Schwartz Law. One benefit is a private defense lawyer has more flexibility in accepting or declining cases. This equates to more time for your case and attention to your questions or communication.

Another reason to hire a CT criminal lawyer at Schwartz Law is a bigger investment in the outcome of your case. Our team truly cares about the result and your future. While we hope every criminal defense client only needs our legal services once, we want to build an ongoing relationship with each client that outlasts a verdict.

What is the Downside of Hiring a CT Criminal Lawyer?

The stress and downside for most defendants in hiring a criminal defense law firm is the cost. Clients are uncertain how much a defense lawyer will charge, when payment is required, how to make these payments, and what other costs, beyond legal fees, are associated with hiring a lawyer. This gap in knowledge can cause a lot of anxiety as you look to hire a criminal defense lawyer.

Unfortunately, certain defendants don’t ask a CT criminal lawyer about cost and legal fees because the answers to all of these questions alleviate a great deal of the stress and worry. It is incredibly important to speak to your criminal defense lawyer about expenses, and here’s how to do it.

When to Start the Conversation About Legal Fees?

You should understand the fee structure and associated costs of a CT criminal lawyer before you sign an engagement letter. An engagement letter is a contractual agreement between you and the lawyer. In the letter, the CT criminal lawyer agrees to provide specific legal services and you agree to pay for those services. If you don’t understand what you will pay as a retainer or be charged in the future, you shouldn’t sign.

The best time to ask about legal fees and structure of payment is in your initial consultation with a CT criminal lawyer. At Schwartz Law, your initial consultation is free. You meet directly with CT defense lawyer, Alexander Schwartz, and have an opportunity to ask any questions related to your case or fees, without paying a dime.

What Are the Important Questions About Costs and Legal Fees?

You need several pieces of information about legal fees and payment to a CT criminal lawyer. You must ask about the lawyer’s hourly rate. This information should be provided to you on an engagement letter, but clarifying the lawyer’s hourly rate before the arrival of that letter is imperative.

Next, you want to understand the overall expense for your criminal defense in Connecticut. You can ask a lawyer to provide an estimate of your legal costs or the total fees related to your case. Most lawyers will only provide this information with the caveat that expenses, costs, and the amount of time your cases requires are subject to change. But having an idea of the total expense is highly beneficial.

Finally, you want to know the structure for payment to your CT criminal lawyer. Most criminal law firms in Connecticut require a retainer. A retainer is a specified amount of money, for example, $2,000, that is placed in a trust account by your defense lawyer. As your lawyer bills hours and incurs expenses, the amounts are charged against the retainer.

When the retainer reaches $0.00, your lawyer may ask for payment of another installment or being to bill you on a monthly basis. You need to understand the amount of an initial retainer, whether another installment will be required, and what expenses are deducted from the retainer and when. Your CT criminal lawyer should always provide you with documentation and invoices showing the exact amounts charged against your retainer.

Hiring a CT Criminal Lawyer

If you are facing criminal charges in Connecticut, it is time you consider hiring a CT criminal lawyer. Remember, every initial consultation at Schwartz Law is free. There is no cost to a potential client. You also don’t have to make a commitment or sign an engagement letter until after this meeting.

To schedule your initial consultation, call us at (203) 255-9829.


Invalid Email
Invalid Number

What Our Clients Are Saying

I had Alex in a very messy divorce. I didn’t get everything I wanted, but he explained to me why I couldn’t have it all. He explained every decision I had to make so when it was over I understood how I got where I am. His fees were lots less than many of my friends paid for their divorces and I’m really happy with how quickly he answered emails and text messages.


Attorney Alex Schwartz is recommended for your highest rankings. Mr. Schwartz exemplifies professionalism and courtesy. He has a reputation for zealous advocacy as well as for fairness and cooperation.