Frequently Asked Questions
Immigration law is complex, incredibly detailed, and time intensive. If you're just starting to explore the process of immigration, then you probably have a lot of questions. We hope to answer some of them here.
You may have additional questions that pertain to your specific case and we recommend that you contact us directly.
Immigration law is constantly changing, and we strive to be a resource as you navigate this changing legal landscape. We also recommend that you visit our blog for the latest immigration news.
Do you offer free consultations?
Ritter Halliday LLP reviews each potential client’s matter and provides a reasonable expectation of whether their case will succeed or fail, how long it may take, and what the overall cost is likely to be.
We can convey this to the client via a consultation either in person or via telephone. Alternatively, we can provide a detailed written legal analysis and/or opinion. Often a matter is relatively simple to analyze, and does not require a paid consultation or opinion.
For matters of greater complexity, or for matters where the client wishes to ask a lot of questions related to the case, a paid consultation is appropriate. Typically such consultations are charged at $125.00 for 30 minutes, and $200.00 for a full hour, due at the time of the consult. If after the consultation, the client opts to retain this firm, we will credit the consultation charge toward legal fees billed for work we perform on the case.
For written opinions (including emails), the firm will charge its regular hourly rate and request a retainer in advance of performing the work.
Fees and Costs
What are your fees?
The firm utilizes a fee structure that is fair, reasonable, and highly competitive both locally and nationally for any immigration firm, while providing a consistently high level of service and legal representation.
We are able to offer reasonable predetermined rates (sometimes referred to as “flat” or “fixed” rates) for a wide range of immigration law services. For matters which are not as predictable, the firm bills at hourly rates, based upon the tenth of an hour.
For a fee estimate for your matter, please contact our office.
What does a fixed (or flat) fee cover?
Initial consultation, necessary research, assembly of required data and documentation, drafting, production, filing, entering appearance at attorney-of-record, and typical advice and correspondence required once the matter is approved.
Work performed outside this scope may be billed at regular hourly rates, and includes responding to RFEs, NOIDs, etc., should they occur. If we believe an RFE or other challenge is likely, we will advise you as soon as that becomes apparent. Often we are able to provide you with a reasonable expectation of the likelihood of an RFE at the onset of the case
Unless otherwise indicated, fixed/flat fees cover legal fees only, and do not cover costs, filing fees or other out-of-pocket expenses associated with a given matter.
What costs may we expect?
Each new matter must be set-up in our web-based case management system. The cost for this is $49.95 per matter per foreign national. This is the same cost we bear to provide our clients this service. Our system is secure and highly versatile, allowing clients to track their case status, upload and download documentation, continually update their immigration-related data (such as travel, arrival and departure dates) and to communicate with us via a secure messaging system. As long as you are our client, we will provide you with access to this system.
Other costs we typically encounter include degree evaluations, expert opinions, document translations, messenger and courier service charges. We bill these back to the client as we incur them, and at our actual cost.
We do not generally advance funds for government filing fees. We will tell you what these filing fees will be up front, and will ask you to provide us with checks or money orders payable to the relevant government agencies at the time of filing.
Secretarial services, copying charges, faxes, and long distance phone calls within the U.S. and Canada, as well as most legal research, are costs we absorb and do not bill back to the client, or recoup through a surcharge.
Do you accept credit cards?
Yes, we accept Visa, MasterCard and Discover cards.