I had a limited scope atty on record. I signed her firm's excessive contract which is saying she essentially can bill me for anything. Then we had agreements per email and personally that were flat fee agreements per item. So per deposition x amount. At every turn we agreed on a new number cause I didnt want to have surprises. She also used the word flat fee in her emails. Now months later she has an additional bill she says if I dont pay it will go to collections. Does the flat fee agreement hold up or the prior 'firm' contract?
2 Answers from Attorneys
This is impossible to analyze without reviewing the contract, the E-mails, and the work your attorney did.
It may well be that the E-mail exchanges modified the contract. In general, provisions that are specific take precedence over those that are more general. These are general principles, however. It's not possible to say how they apply to the contract, the E-mails, and the work the attorney did in your case.
In order to properly analyze your question, it would be necessary to review the feel agreement and the emails to see what happened. You can modify contracts verbally or via email, so it is certainly possible that you reached an agreement with the attorney to change some of the original terms. It is also possibly that you authorized the attorney to do work beyond the original scope of the contract.