Here is current information about my fees. Each client and case is unique; fees can vary depending on the circumstances. The fee for your work would depend on what we agree upon after we have discussed your situation. I reserve the right to change my fees mentioned here.
My billing rate for estate planning is $300 an hour. But I give discounts for small matters and repeat clients.
I write wills and other documents with simple terms in plain language. My goal is to give you a plan you can understand and successfully use. The plain language approach saves time and allows us to focus on an aspect of estate planning that is usually neglected --- coordinating your assets to the plan so the plan will actually work.
Tell me a bit about yourself on the phone and I can often start on your plan before our first visit in person. Often I can finish the papers and we can sign them during your first visit. Otherwise, I can usually quote a fixed fee to finish your work. Here are some typical fees for folks with moderate-size estates:
- Simple plan with will for single person with grown children plus powers of attorney - $695
- Simple plan with will for single person with young children plus powers of attorney - $795
- Simple plan with wills for husband and wife with grown children plus powers of attorney - $850
- Simple plan with wills for husband and wife with young children plus powers of attorney - $895
- Basic tax-saving plan with wills for husband and wife with grown children plus powers of attorney - $1,795
- Basic tax-saving plan with wills for husband and wife with young children plus powers of attorney - $1,995
More complicated family situations or advanced tax planning for larger estates will cost more. I have to be really careful when there are step-children in the family.
My rate for work on administration of estates, guardianships, and controversies is $300 an hour. Recently, the probate courts in Dallas County, Collin County, Denton County, Rockwall County, and Tarrant County have gone from paper files to all-electronic filing. Ultimately, this should be a more efficient system from what we had before. But for now, there is a "learing curve" that is slowing down probate attorneys, court staff, and county clerk staff in these counties. In some counties it is also taking longer than before to schedule court hearings. This is partly due to electronic filing and partly due to increased demand on probate court services as the populations of our urban counties increase and get older.
Here are examples of typical fees in simple cases:
- Probate of will as muniment of title. $1,250 (plus court fees)
- Probate normal Texas will for independent executor: $1,995 (plus the court fees) through getting "Letters Testamentary" for the executor. Then $300 per hour for other work such as, for example, preparing the inventory.
- Application to Determine Heirship. $2,500 (plus court fees, costs of publishing the required notice in a newspaper, and the fee to the attorney ad litem.)
A simple case is one where the papers are in order and there are no troublesome legal or practical issues. Many probate cases require extra work that increases the fee.
Fees for court cases are the same in Dallas, Collin, and Rockwall counties. Cases in Denton County and Tarrant County may well run higher because of special notice requirements and travel time. Fees in other counties will also be higher due to travel time.
My billing rate for corporate law and other commercial work is $300 per hour.