I am asked this question many times a week. Of course, a lawyer needs to know when and where this all took place to be sure the Statute of Limitations and Venue are protected. An attorney needs to know if this is a local case or out of state or county matter. I always tell callers they are better off with a local lawyer, who will know the other local lawyers and court personnel.

Last week I received a call, and after 15 minutes the potential client explained this all happened in Las Vegas. Most lawyers are only “licensed” in the state where they practice. Of course, explaining that, as a rule lawyers only give a free consultation on Accident and Criminal matters. Matters other than accidents are not handled on a contingency. Criminal matters are often a set amount up to the trial stage.

I try to explain that it is equivalent to calling a doctor and asking what s/he would charge to see you, as well as prescribe a course of treatment that would ultimately cure you. A lawyer, like a doctor, needs more information to evaluate the matter. Unfortunately, most matters are not resolved with a letter.

Some lawyers are not very ethical, and will quote a low amount for a letter, yet later demand a lot more money. There is good and bad in every profession and that is in part why The Martindale Hubbell and Avvo legal ratings are necessary.


Judges and lawyers rate lawyers for Legal Ability and Very High Ethics. AV Pre-eminent is the highest rating by Martindale Hubbell and Avvo’s Superb 10.0/5 Star is their high rating. I have been honored to have received both in my career.

When a lawyer takes on a client, they have an obligation to see the matter through. Thus, a lawyer wants to be sure the potential client can “stay in the game” until the end.

In today’s technological world, a letter via email, is responded to within minutes. We no longer wait a week for a response in the mail. This immediate response requires action from attorneys and necessitates further billable contact with the client.

A quoted fee for handling a legal matter is merely a guesstimate of the billable time- there is no way to know what the other side will do. Sometimes upon receiving our letter, the opposition will fold their cards, and we will simply prevail.

On other occasions, the opposition will hire their own attorney and then the paper battle begins. Some defense lawyers will “milk” a case and paper us by filing various motions. We have to respond to them and that is costly. This will require the legal fees on both sides to escalate.

That is why there is nothing more expensive than Civil Litigation. Not only will it cost $600+ to file and serve a summons and complaint, but we may also need further funds to hire an investigator or experts to prove our case.

As a last resort, you might serve by publication in a local paper. We would get a judgement in favor of our client only to have the defendant’s lawyer move to vacate the judgement six months later…and here we go again.

That is why I thoroughly go over the potential costs with a client to be sure a lawsuit is the right direction for the matter. I always ask the new client “who has more money?”…that is the party that has the edge. If the other side is not cooperative, then there is no end to the time it will take and the cost involved.


Cut out this card!


Upon the advice of my attorney, Dale Gribow, I exercise my right to remain silent until you contact him at (760) 837-7500 or dale@dalegribowlaw.com for an OK.
My attorney has advised me that the VOLUNTARY FIELD SOBRIETY (FST) AND BREATH TEST at the scene, are OPTIONAL (unless one is on probation). Thus, I elect not to take them. I want to cooperate and am happy to take a BLOOD TEST.

DALE GRIBOW is a “Boutique Concierge” PI/DUI firm with 25+ TOP LAWYER awards, 9 Man of the Year recognitions, 4 Dale Gribow Days, and awarded “Mr. Charity”.
He has represented the CV’s Seriously Injured and Criminally Accused for 30 years. The caseload is limited so calls can be answered and returned, the “Old Fashioned” way…by Dale. “Whether I accept your case or not, if you take the time to call, I will personally direct you.”