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LRS - RFP Questions
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LAWYER REFERRAL SERVICE REDUCED FEE PROGRAM

(Need a Referral? Click here or send email to admin@mcbalaw.com)

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE REDUCED FEE PROGRAM

What are the criteria for RFP membership?  Any attorney who is a member in good standing in the MCBA can participate in the program.

Must I join the LRS to participate in the RFP?  No. If you have joined the LRS there is no fee to participate in the RFP. However, if you have not joined the LRS, there is a $35 fee to participate in the RFP.

Do the LRS By-Laws apply to the RFP?  Yes, with the exception of the percentage referral fee.

What is are criteria for RFP client participation? Any person who seeks legal assistance through the Reduced Fee Program must not have income greater than 300% of the Official Poverty Threshold (OPT) and liquid assets over $4,500, and own more than one home per family and one car per adult.

Who Does the Client Screening?  The application requires clients to certify their income and assets. The RFP panel attorneys agree to review the client application form and determine qualification based upon the criteria mentioned above.

What if the client doesn’t qualify for the RFP?  Can I still accept him/her as a client?  Clients who do not qualify shall either be treated as an LRS referral, if the attorney is an LRS member, or returned to the LRS program for referral.  RFP panel attorneys who are not LRS panel members are prohibited from representing clients referred to them who do not qualify for the program.

Does the Hourly Rate Apply Against or Is it Exclusive of the Retainer?  The standard RFP retainer agreement provides that the hourly rate shall be applied against the retainer.  The number of hours billed will determine the total legal fee.

Are Filing Fees and Other Related Costs Included in the Retainer?  No, fees and costs are to be added.

Are there any provisions governing the recovery of attorneys fees from the opposing party?  No.  If received, the distribution of those recovered fees shall be governed by the attorney-client agreement.

How Was the Fee Schedule Determined?  The fee schedule was determined based upon a comparative study of other reduced fee panel programs. The LRS Committee designed the retainer schedule to reflect the minimum amount of time the panel member could reasonably be expected to spend on a given case.

Will I Become a Collection Agent for the Bar Association?  No.  Clients are required to pay a $30 application fee to the attorney prior to the initial consultation.  The attorney should not proceed with the consultation without payment.

Is a Professional Liability Insurance Policy Required?  Yes.  Panel members must carry liability insurance in an amount not less than $100,000/$300,000 and proof of coverage in the form of a copy of the declaration page of the policy must accompany the attorney application form.

Can I Refuse to Accept a Client?  Yes.  The attorney is only required to provide an initial consultation.

Are there any case reporting requirements? Yes. The attorney will receive a monthly case status referral form to be completed and returned to the MCBA.

Who will oversee the RFP program? The LRS Administrator, Pattyann Pulda, will oversee the RFP program, under the supervision of the MCBA’s Executive Director and LRS Committee.

Are there experienced attorneys willing to assist RFP members? Yes. The Bar Association's Mentor Program has prepared a list of attorneys who are willing to aid other practitioners in all practice areas covered under the Reduced Fee Program.


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