Legal Question in Civil Litigation in Maine

Can an attorney charge me by the hour for travel time to visit me in Jail and he visited another inmate at the same time.... I think this would need to be split....

5 hours were charged to me he spent 10 min with me and 20 with the other Inmate....

I got charged full price the other inmate was a court appointed and paid for by the state

Asked on 8/28/11, 4:54 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Heidi Pushard Law Office of Heidi M. Pushard

Maine Rule of Professional Conduct 1.5(1) states, in part: (a) A lawyer shall not make an agreement for, charge, or collect an unreasonable fee or an unreasonable amount for expenses. A fee or charge for expenses is unreasonable when, after a review of the facts, a lawyer of ordinary prudence would be left with a definite and firm conviction that the fee or expense is in excess of a reasonable fee or expense.

Although it is reasonable to charge for travel time, it is not reasonable or ethical for an attorney to charge two clients for the same action. You are correct that it should be split.

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Answered on 10/14/11, 2:55 am

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