Frequently Asked Questions
When I call Schroeder Law will the fee meter start ticking?
No. When you call the first time as a potential client or as a former client in a new matter, Ms Daryl Cole or one of the other trained paralegal professionals at Schroeder Law will conduct a brief screening interview (SI) with you on the phone at no charge.
What is a screening interview (SI)?
During the SI, Ms Cole or one of the trained paralegals will LISTEN to you. Ms Cole may ask questions to clarify (1) if Schroeder Law has any conflicts that would preclude one of our attorneys from representing you; and (2) obtain a brief description of the issue(s) involved.
How does Schroeder Law determine if its' attorneys have a conflict and cannot represent me?
To determine conflicts at the screening interview (SI), our assistant firm administrator/paralegal Cole will need to know your full name and address, and a description of the property at issue as well as the names and addresses of any person(s) who oppose you. While you are on the phone, Ms Cole will run the names you give to her through our computer conflict program.
How much information do I give concerning the issue at the screening interview (SI)?
If no conflicts are immediately apparent, Ms Cole will proceed to LISTEN to a short (5 minute) description of the problem you are experiencing as well as any deadlines that you know that may apply. Depending upon the issue presented, Ms Cole may recommend that you collect and forward certain information to Schroeder Law before an attorney is scheduled to talk with you further. Information requested may include a recommendation that you obtain or have our office obtain copies of your water right files for a flat fee of $375.
If I choose not to collect information or pay Schroeder Law to obtain my water rights files can I still talk to an attorney?
Yes. However, the extent of information that you provide before you talk to the attorney will have a direct relationship on the quality of the conference input you receive from the attorney.
When I talk to someone at Schroeder Law is what I say confidential?
Yes. From the first time you call, Schroeder Law keeps your name and all information confidential within the office unless you give us permission to share the information. Attorneys are required by their license to keep confidences and all who work at Schroeder Law are required to sign confidentiality agreements.
How will I know if an attorney at Schroeder Law will help me?
Within 24 hours after the screening interview, attorney Laura Schroeder reviews the screening interview conflict determinations and the issue to confirm that no conflict exists. Once the conflict determination is resolved, attorney Schroeder will assign the attorney in the office with the most relevant experience to conduct an initial client conference (ICC). After these determinations by Attorney Schroeder, Ms. Cole will call you to make a telephone appointment with you and the assigned attorney for the ICC.
Can I name the attorney that I want assigned to my initial client conference (ICC)?
Yes, subject to attorney availability.
What happens if Schroeder Law has a conflict?
If Schroeder Law has a conflict, Ms Cole will inform you of the conflict and if possible refer you to an attorney who may be able to help you.
How will I be charged for the initial client conference (ICC)?
You will NOT be charged for the ICC.
Where does the initial client conference (ICC) take place?
The attorney assigned and a paralegal will conduct the ICC usually by phone as that it usually most expedient. The client at his or her choice may also choose to come to our Hollywood area office in Portland or our Reno Nevada office for the ICC. Alternatively, the attorney may decide that a particular ICC should be accomplished in person at the client's property. Whether the ICC is conducted by phone, at the office or by attorney choice at the property, there is no charge for the phone call, conference, or any attorney chosen travel.
How long will the initial client conference (ICC) take?
The attorney is encouraged to limit their time on the ICC to one hour; however, this limit is arbitrary and depends upon how long the attorney needs to understand the initial situation.
What is the goal of the initial client conference (ICC)?
The goal of the ICC is: (1) For you to decide if you would like to work with an attorney at Schroeder Law Offices; (2) For the attorney to obtain an initial understanding of your issue; and (3) For you and the attorney to work together to determine an initial strategy to resolve the issue you present.
What happens after I talk to the attorney?
After the initial client conference (ICC) with the attorney, the attorney and paralegal at Schroeder Law Offices will write up an initial client summary letter (ICSL) to outline and highlight the initial strategy that was discussed at the initial client conference (ICC).
Will I be charged for the initial client summary letter (ICSL)?
No. Schroeder Law Offices does not charge for the ICSL; however if during the ICC/ICSL process the attorney determines that you have an issue that might be resolved through the employment of an attorney at Schroeder Law Offices, a proposed fee agreement will be included as an attachment to the ICSL.
How long will I have to wait after the initial client conference (ICC) before I receive the initial client summary letter (ICSL)and proposed fee agreement?
Immediately if necessary; however, in the normal course, Schroeder Law Offices will have the ICSL to you within 10 working days following the ICC.
After I have completed the ICC/ICSL process and received the fee agreement, do I have to hire Schroeder Law Offices?
No. You are under no obligation to choose Schroeder Law Offices. The proposed fee agreement enclosed with the ICSL will have an expiration date. If on or before the expiration date, you are still interested in hiring Schroeder Law Offices in the future, we encourage you to contact our administrator Scott Borison for an extension of the proposed fee agreement.
Will the attorneys at Schroeder Law Offices continue to respond to my questions after the ICC is completed?
Unfortunately, attorneys ethical obligations require us to have clear procedures in place regarding client relationships. Thus, once the ICC and/or ICC/ICSL process is completed, the attorneys are discouraged from further conversations on the same issue with you until Schroeder Law Offices is retained to represent you.
How do I retain an attorney to represent me at Schroeder Law Offices?
Receive and return a fee agreement with any required retainer.
What is the usual retainer at Schroeder Law Offices?
If you are a former or current client at Schroeder Law Offices that has maintained an exceptional payment history, no retainer will likely be required. New clients without a payment history with Schroeder Law Offices are usually required to deposit a retainer in the amount of three to five thousand dollars.
How does Schroeder Law Offices decide on its hourly rates?
Hourly rates are set based upon the experience of the attorney and team members assigned to work with you and the market hourly rate for the type of work involved. While Schroeder Law Offices intends to run its business responsibly so as to be profitable, profit margins are set with the goal of providing client service at a reasonable cost.
Does Schroeder Law Offices have flat fee payment arrangements?
Yes. Schroeder Law Offices routinely offers flat fee arrangements that can be offered for portions or all of the work required. A clear understanding of the work required and client expectations is required prior to offering a flat fee arrangement.
Does Schroeder Law Offices work on contingency?
Yes in cases where you and Schroeder Law Offices agree that the damage recovery will sufficiently compensate you and Schroeder Law Offices for the effort likely needed to be expended for a successful settlement or verdict.