Burbank & Brown
What To Expect
Fixed fee, no surprises
At Burbank & Brown we offer fixed fee initial consultation to all new clients so that there are no surprises. This consultation can go for anywhere up to one hour at no additional charge to you. All we ask is that you pay your initial consult fee upfront on the day of your appointment.
At your initial consultation we obtain enough information from you so that we can guide you on the best way to move your matter forward. If you would like Burbank & Brown to represent you, we then issue you with a Costs Agreement and Disclosure Document which details our ongoing charges.
We may ask you to compile documents and information for us, and a follow up appointment will be scheduled, usually for two weeks’ time.
What To Bring
To speed up the process and potentially save you time and money you can prepare yourself for your initial consultation by gathering some preliminary documents and information to bring with you, like:
- A list of events in chronological order
- A list of questions as it’s easy to forget what you want to ask
- For property matters, a list of assets and liabilities.
- For criminal matters, character references, copies of Court
- Attendance Notices or ADVOs
- For estate matters, a copy of your old will Power of Attorney or Enduring Guardianship documents.
- A support person to keep you focused and help you recall your advice afterwards. Law issues are often emotional and it can be difficult to recall the information we give you.
How we charge
For most services we charge for the work we do based on hourly rates.
The Solicitor with carriage of your matter may seek the help of a fellow Solicitor, Paralegal or Legal Support Officers from time to time. This is to keep your costs down. If we make this judgment trust we are doing this to save you on legal fees. All our staff are highly trained to serve you as cost effectively as possible.
We charge in 6 minute increments, so you will only be charged for time we’re actually working on your matter. The time spent is rounded up to the nearest 6 minute increment (e.g. 12 minutes, 18 minutes etc).
We may incur disbursements or expenses whilst working for you. This is money we pay to others on your behalf and might include search fees, court filing fees, process server fees, expert fees, witness expenses, travel expenses, transcript expenses and barrister’s fees.
A one off administration charge of $50 will be invoiced to you once we commence work on your matter. You will also be responsible for further internal expenses incurred whilst carrying out your instructions, such as postage, printing, photocopying and sending/receiving facsimiles.
If your matter involves court proceedings, we will need to charge you an up front court filing fee. We will not commence court proceedings until this fee has been paid. More on court filing fees.
Burbank & Brown charge a fixed fee for all divorce applications of $1400+GST, plus your court filing fee and disbursements.
The current court filing fee for a sole application is $1060. You may be eligible for a reduced filing fee of $350. Contact us for eligibility requirements.
Disbursements include a one off administration charge of $50 plus personal service fees which typically range from $200 to $500 depending on the location of the other party.
When you instruct Burbank & Brown to act on your behalf, we provide you with an estimate of our costs and disbursements, plus our payment terms. Our estimates are based on past experience and our current understanding from you as to what services are required. Our costs may exceed the estimate if further information becomes available or circumstances change as your matter progresses. In this event we will provide you with a revised estimate as soon as practicable.
We know that resolving your issues and problems can be costly. At Burbank & Brown we pride ourselves on keeping you as up to date as possible with our costs at various stages along the way.
If you would like to discuss our costs further, we encourage you to contact our office and speak with our friendly team.
In most cases we issue itemised invoices fortnightly and appreciate prompt payment. We will notify you if this payment schedule would vary in your specific case. We would be happy to discuss any aspect of your invoice that concerns you. You are welcome to make contact with our Chief Financial Officer regarding any account queries.
Tips for Working With Us
We are not here to judge, and what has happened has happened.
We need the full story, honestly, so that we can act within the court system to represent you the best we can. Being dishonest or omitting information will only damage your case in the long run.
Like most lawyers we charge in 6 minute increments. We work hard to maximise our efficiency when dealing with your case and. In order to achieve this we will:
- Focus on your legal representation with compassion, and refer you to a counselling service if we feel you would benefit from their skills and services.
- Offer realistic advice when we believe that chasing down assets may ultimately cost you more than they are worth.
- Send correspondence by email wherever possible for both time and cost efficiencies.
- Itemise our bills so you can clearly see the time you are paying for.
You can help us get the best possible outcome and reduce time and costs by being as prepared as possible.
- Collate all relevant documents including statements of accounts, correspondence, existing agreements, previous court documents, notes of telephone discussions, appraisals or valuations and /or other items we recommend.
- Type up hand written notes or calendar entries.
- Prepare typed responses to any questions filed by the other party’ legal representative.
- Have an optimum outcome in mind but stay realistic and be willing to negotiate.
what our clients say
“The moment I met Melissa I knew she was the person I wanted in my corner. She listened to me without interruption, then after some questions explained the options available and possible outcomes. She was always straightforward, reassuring and positive. I would recommend to anyone wanting a good solicitor.”
- YM, St George’s Basin
“Melissa Vine came highly recommended by a number of people and I am pleased that I took their advice; she is definitely the lady you want to represent you. Professional and caring, I was supported through a very difficult time, and my matter settled in a timely fashion with a great result.”
- MS, Ulladulla
“I thank you and your team sincerely for all your hard work and support. I couldn’t of found a more dedicated and professional firm with honest and child-focussed people. I am so pleased with the outcome.”
- KC, Bomaderry
“Melissa, thank you for all of your hard work and assistance in all of my family matters. Because of your firm, I get to spend Christmas with my children and share in their life.”
- CS, Worrigee, near Nowra
“I would like to thank Melissa and the team for their ongoing support and professional assistance with a custody battle over the car of my two boys. I felt supported and reassured throughout the whole court process. I would strongly recommend MDV Family Lawyers to people who need assistance with any family law issues.”
- BD, North Nowra
“A huge thank you to Melissa and your team. We have been delighted with your guidance, advice and representations throughout. You were relentless in your strive for what is “right” and that was very comforting at such an emotional time. Thank you for your professionalism, your passion and your skills.”
- SV, Sydney
“Extremely professional and understanding, during what has been the most stressful time of my life. Melissa constantly kept me up to date with the progress of my complex case and was very knowledgeable and efficient, always advising me in the most cost effective way possible. The end result exceeded my expectation.”
- FA, Bomaderry, near Nowra