Troy MI License Restoration Blog

Tuesday, January 27, 2015


After having practiced for well over twenty years, looking back on how I set fees for various representations reveals a constantly evolving procedure.

My upbringing was of Middle America where talking about money was gauche. We never knew how much money our parents made and it was made clear to me and my six siblings that that was not a topic for discussion between parents and children.

So, while it somewhat alarmed me when my dad would, on occasion, say to me things like, “Mart, you had better get a good job when you grow up!” (usually this kind of comment would spew from my father’s lips when I would asked him to buy me something a little pricey or something he didn’t think I needed.), I never really understood the relationship between how much work it took to be able to buy certain things.

These things became apparent only when I was thrust out into the world to experience life first hand. It was then that I realized how much money it took to do things. OUCH!! My dad’s words became crystal clear. Things are expensive! Once I realized how much work it took to earn whatever amount of money, I understood the importance of value.

Once I understood value in conjunction with the cost of things, I started to reevaluate some of my childhood wants and desires. I no longer wanted to live in a mansion because I understood the value to me was not worth the amount of work it would take to purchase, and maintain, such an extravagance. So too went thoughts of a private island with the offshore racer docked out back and of course the custom fitted Boeing 747 to get us there. The naïveté of childhood!!

When I became an attorney the same type of uncertainty flooded back into my consciousness when it came to fees. How much are my services worth?? How do I know how much to charge?? What’s fair?? How can I look to other attorneys and what they charge when prices vary so wildly for the same type of case?!? Why attorney’s in different areas charge different prices for the same type of work???

Beyond having a broad spectrum of prices from lowest cost attorney to highest, I began to realize that my prices were going to be based on a number a factors but mostly guided by integrity, fairness and value.

When I listen to some attorneys trying to justify their high prices to a lay person I just shake my head in disgust. Most lay persons do not understand that certain types of “garden variety” cases have predictable outcomes. REGARDLESS OF WHOM THE ATTORNEY IS.

Don’t get overcharged! Don’t buy a nuclear device when a flyswatter can do the job (and actually can do it better because the same result is accomplished for half the price). Don’t line daddy war bucks pockets with his inflated prices just so he can make his vacation home payment on your back…think value!!

With twenty-five years of experience under my belt and my integrity firmly affixed, the value of my services is hard to beat. I enjoy fighting the good fight for my clients and I love winning!!  And deep down, at the end of the day I never have to feel like a scumbag for wrestling every last possible red cent out of my client based on some type of strained logic/justification.

Getting a good lawyer without overpaying for his services is but a phone call away. When you need help combined with experience, passion and integrity,  call the Law Offices of Martin Lievois in Troy at 248-419-0566 or in Flint at 810-250-4550.

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