Episode 130 – How To Protect Your Retainer Fees From Low-ball Attorneys?

Episode 130 – How To Protect Your Retainer Fees From Low-ball Attorneys?

In today’s episode I’ve shared concrete strategies to beat out local competitors who are bringing down your retainer fees. Listen to the audio below to find out how to beat low-ball attorneys.


Hello, this is Richard Jacobs from Speakeasy Authority Marketing. Today, I’m going to talk about the economy and pricing and how to protect yourself from people not wanting to pay you what you need to be paid to do the legal work. So I just literally got off the phone with a client of mine telling me, “Rich, we are having problems. Local guys are just way underbidding on cases. It’s a problem I can’t compete with that. What are we supposed to do?” So I took them through a series of steps that you can use for any practice area, okay. What I’m going to do is I’m going to start it DWI or DUI. It’s just, in my mind, the easiest thing to revert to but again, if you’re estate planning, bankruptcy, divorce, immigration, this applies to you and applies to all pricing, okay. So listen up.

So, DWI – if you wait until someone calls you and you give them a free advice and you go through it and then you present your price, and they say, “Oh man, that’s a lot of money”, or, “I talked to John Smith down the street and he’ll do it for half of that”, you’re screwed. You waited too long to bring your price out. You got to justify your price in a way that’s not confrontational and that’s accepted as fact way before that point, way before people even call you. So how do you do that? Well, where will people go before they call you? They’ll go to your website and they’ll read stuff, okay. They may watch your video. They may run into you in all kinds of ways. So first of all, you want to have content out there that gets them before they even call you to intercept them and get them your message before they even think to call or not to call because you’ll never know the people that don’t call you. There is some reason they didn’t but you’ll just never know. Terrible, I know.

So, what can you put out there? Here is what I would do. For DWI or DUI, what I would do first of all, and I have this, is get a listing of all the potential costs someone will incur if they don’t hire an attorney or if they plead guilty or give up. And I’ve seen stats on this, so the list is long, it’s 15-20 items, and the bottom-line cost is anywhere from 10,000 to $20,000. So you’d present this list either in video or text format or whatever it is, and you say, “This is the cost of doing nothing, giving up”, or, “This is the cost of losing even if you have defense on your case”. The fee to hire me is far less than that. That’s the next line item here. “So $15,000 for a DUI, well the good news is the fee to hire me is only a fifth of that. And there is a much greater likelihood that you may get a positive result on your case because now you have an attorney that’s intervening for you. No, there are no guarantees on outcome but there is a good likelihood that some parts of your case will be mitigated and things will be better for you”, okay.

“Now, let me tell you why I charge this much. So I charge $3,000 for a DUI in your case. Here is what I can do in that regard. I can challenge the breath test, I can do this, I can do that, I can file up to three motions, I can go to court five times etc. If you paid me $10,000, here is what I would do in your case. I would have an expert on this, I would have a reconstructionist and all that. Here’s what I could do if you paid me only $1,500 and I know that there are other attorneys out there charging that. I could only do this, I couldn’t do this, I couldn’t do that and I couldn’t do this. Now, I consider myself a good lawyer. I’ve been practicing for 20 years. These other guys, I am sure, are good lawyers too but unless they’re superman, unless they come from some other planet where lawyers have special abilities that I don’t know about, there is no way they could do anymore than I could do for that $1,500 price. So considering the severity of the case and what’s at stake for you, which choice do you think is best for you? The lowest price, least amount they can do for you, the highest price, or the middle of the road?” And you leave people with that question, okay.

Now, there is a valid reason why you charge what you charge, you’ve shown them the high, you’ve shown them the low, and you’ve shown them what’s at stake if they do nothing. This is a good defense against price. It’s completely rational, it makes sense and all that. And if you put this in front of people either in a video or on an article on your website, or even before they come to see. Let’s say they come for an appointment to your office, they’re sitting in the waiting room. Have your secretary give a sheet like this to the people before they walk in because you want to shoot down any price objections before they even talk to you. Then you have a much better chance of winning the game and you don’t have to back paddle and scramble and get underrated and agitated at the very last moment about why you charge what you charge. It’s already taken care of.

So if you need help with strategies like this on price, on collecting money, on getting more clients to call you on the first place, call me, call 888-225-8594, email me Richard.Jacobs@speakeasymarketinginc.com. We’ll help you out. This is what we do, this is all we do. We’ve been doing it for 6 years for well over 700 attorneys. Thank you.


Richard Jacobs

About Richard Jacobs

My name is Richard Jacobs, and I've discovered quite a bit about the plight of solo practitioners and small, 2-5 attorney firms like yours these past 12 years.

I've come to understand the unique challenges in marketing ethically and effectively that attorneys face because I have:

  • Helped over 180 attorneys author their own practice area book and become the 'implied expert' in their practice area
  • Helped hundreds of attorneys successfully navigate Google's search algorithm changes, growing their websites from 2 potential clients calling a month to 4+ calls per DAY for some clients.
  • Interviewed and promoted over 507 attorneys nationwide, in practice areas such as:
  • DUI / DWI
  • Family Law
  • Criminal Defense
  • Bankruptcy
  • Auto Accidents
  • Social Security Disability
  • Slip & Falls (Premises Liability)
  • Real Estate
  • Estate Planning / Probate
  • Wage and Hour Claims
  • Expungements / Post Conviction Relief

Before you decide to invest in your marketing, it makes sense to first request your complimentary, custom, no obligation video website review.

Richard is the author of 6 books published on Amazon, Kindle and Audible.com

Richard is available for speaking engagements on direct marketing for attorneys and has recently spoken at the following legal conferences:

  • PILMMA (Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing & Management Association)
  • Las Vegas DUI Summit – Private event for DUI attorneys
  • New York Boutique Lawyers Association
  • Perry Marshall & Associates Marketing Academy (Marina Del Rey, CA)
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)