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Hiring an attorney at the Board

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broncovet

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Im speaking with an attorney I plan on hiring next week.  Im considering asking him about the possibilities of a "BVA" (partial or total) award.  

This is how I see it.  I personally filed my own I 9, as well as the NOD(s), and I dont mind paying the attorney "something" if I get awarded at the board, as he has already done some work on it.  But not the full 20% for mostly my own efforts.   

 

So, Im thinking of negotiating something like this:

For the retro I win at the BVA level, since I did most of the work, I think 20% is extravigant, and I would be willing to pay him an hourly for the hours he actually contributed.  I think he proably has 5 hours in it, if its 200 per hour that's 1000 and I think that is fair.   

However, if we move to CAVC (most likely) then 20% is fair as he did most of the CAVC related work.

But, for applicable retro I get from the BVA, due mostly to my own efforts, I am very reluctant to pay him 20%.  

I think an hourly would be more reasonable if I win at the BVA through mostly my own efforts.  Thoughts?  

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Just make an agreement in writing with this attorney, he sign it and you sign it have it notarized     then it becomes a legal document as a binding contract.

That sounds fair to me bronco.

 

.................Buck

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Im speaking with an attorney I plan on hiring next week.  Im considering asking him about the possibilities of a "BVA" (partial or total) award.  

This is how I see it.  I personally filed my own I 9, as well as the NOD(s), and I dont mind paying the attorney "something" if I get awarded at the board, as he has already done some work on it.  But not the full 20% for mostly my own efforts.   

 

So, Im thinking of negotiating something like this:

For the retro I win at the BVA level, since I did most of the work, I think 20% is extravigant, and I would be willing to pay him an hourly for the hours he actually contributed.  I think he proably has 5 hours in it, if its 200 per hour that's 1000 and I think that is fair.   

However, if we move to CAVC (most likely) then 20% is fair as he did most of the CAVC related work.

But, for applicable retro I get from the BVA, due mostly to my own efforts, I am very reluctant to pay him 20%.  

I think an hourly would be more reasonable if I win at the BVA through mostly my own efforts.  Thoughts?  

I know sometimes it's hard to understand what you are paying for with an attorney.

Attorneys normally get much more than 20%, this low of a percentage is only because the VA limits what attorneys can take. This really is not a lot considering they do not get paid unless they win your claim. The best attorney probably gets paid on about half ( or less) of the claims they work on. Since they simply will not win some cases and others will end up getting dropped and not followed up on by the client after it is remanded, delayed, etc.. 

When you hire an attorney for an appeal before the BVA, you are paying for their expertise in finding and presenting the proper legal arguments before the board. I would be very surprised if an attorney even considered an offer like that. 

That being said, there is always room for negotiation in an attorney's fee. If you feel the amount of work he will need to put in isn't sufficient to justify 20%, explain to him why you feel that way and ask for a lower percentage, maybe 15%, I wouldn't bother asking for less than that.

If you hire an attorney on an hourly basis, you pay him whether he wins or loses and a large retainer would be required up front. I guarantee you, no attorney will accept an hourly rate on a contingency basis. 

Best of luck at the BVA.

Edited by bluevet
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Broncovet,

 

ALL attorney fees and payments are negotiable. You just need to make sure that:

1) the agreement is in writing;

2) the agreement is made in good faith;

3) the agreement is signed by both parties;

4) YES it CAN be notarized (and should be), but does NOT need to be, to make it legal. However if you wish to record the agreement at your County Recorder’s Office, then it does need to be notarized. (I am not an attorney so I am not giving you legal advice, but for years I know and have worked with many attorneys and I am a former Notary).

 

A suggestion would be to use that attorney’s Standard Retainer Agreement paperwork and make changes agreeable to both parties. Make sure you both know “WHO DOES WHAT FOR HOW MUCH”.

 

OSC

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I believe  this decision would left up to the attorney  ...if an attorney needs the work  he will agree to help.  a lot of times its not the $$  an attorney is seeking  its the experience with VA  Law & satisfaction helping  a Veteran.

jmo

 

............Buck

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you cant set the amount you think you should pay an attorney if so why the hell would you

need one. If you know this much you don't need help from no attorney all you need is a decision right?

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