Frequently Asked Questions
Finding the right lawyer is personal. Please phone or email us today to speak to a representative.
1. What are your hours?
Generally the office is staffed from 8:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
2. Where are you located?
Voelker & Associates is located in the Hampton Stoneworks Professional Building. Our address and contact information is:
Voelker & Associates, P.C.
Hampton Stoneworks Professional Building
3960 Route 8, Suite 200
Allison Park, PA 15101-3603
Phone: (412) 486-8800
Fax: (412) 486-2200
3. If I have an initial telephone or office consultation, will I be required or expected to hire your firm as my attorney? What if I am mainly just shopping around for an attorney?
There are no strings attached to an initial office consultation. If you decide that only consultation is adequate for your purposes, or if you decide to interview other attorneys, then such choice on your part is certainly understandable and will be respected.
4. What if I do decide that I want to hire your law firm to represent me? Will that process be discussed during an initial consultation?
We frequently meet with potential clients who are in need of further legal services. You and the attorney will also be discussing the nature and extent of possible future or additional legal services during the consultation, including the estimated fees and costs for such services. If you decide to hire our firm to represent you, then such can be arranged at the conclusion of the consultation or at a later date, by mutual agreement.
5. How does your firm bill or calculate fees for legal services?
Fees for legal services are determined on a case-by-case basis, taking into account such factors as the nature and complexity of the legal matter, the estimated steps that will need to be undertaken to accomplish and conclude the legal matter, the likelihood of trial or other court appearances in connection with the legal matter, and any special time constraints or other unique factors associated with the case. Most work done at Voelker & Associates is done on an hourly basis. The hourly rate is based on the attorney(s) performing services on you matter. You shall also be responsible for all costs and expenses in connection with your matter. While Voelker & Associates, P.C. has no obligation to do so, in the event that the law firm does incur costs or makes disbursements of law firm funds on your behalf, the same will be included on your invoices. Fees and fee payment arrangements will be discussed during the initial office consultation.
6. What is a retainer?
A retainer is a sum of money that a client places in a law firm escrow account. Prior to commencement of representation, Voelker & Associates, P.C. will require payment of a retainer. Voelker & Associates, P.C. will bill against the retainer on a monthly basis. If and when the retainer begins to become exhausted by our monthly billings for fees and expenses, you will be required to replenish the retainer to pay the monthly bills and expenses. In the event this matter is resolved or our representation of you is terminated before the retainer is exhausted, we will return the balance of the retainer, less any outstanding bills, unbilled legal fees and unreimbursed expenses.
7. What should I look for in selecting a lawyer to represent me?
Before hiring a lawyer, you should spend some time researching the law firm you are considering. Ask for information about the lawyer’s education, training, and experience dealing with cases similar to yours. Ask the lawyer to go over the fee contract with you in detail, and be sure you understand how you will pay the lawyer’s fee and any litigation costs. Ask about the possible adverse consequences if your case is lost.
8. I have an attorney who handles my family matters. Why do I need another attorney?
You can expect that your opposition will be represented by an attorney with a great deal of experience in the subject matter of your case. Hiring an attorney experienced in your specific type of case may best serve your interests. (A great general practice doctor would never attempt heart surgery!)
9. What can I expect from my first appointment with your firm?
At Voelker & Associates, P.C. you will find a courteous and professional staff. Meeting your lawyer for the first time can be a stressful experience, and we will do our best to make you comfortable. Our staff reserves plenty of time to meet with new clients to discuss potential cases. Having documents at our disposal is beneficial, so we always suggest that new clients bring pertinent paperwork.
10. If I have a litigation matter, can I count on you to win?
We will do our best to represent our clients. There are no guaranteed outcomes for any lawsuit or claim. Our clients can count on the fact that we work hard and efficiently to make sure that the cases we prosecute are thoroughly prepared.
11. I have never been involved in a trial. How do you help your clients prepare?
Statistics prove that most cases get resolved prior to going to trial. Regardless, we believe in being prepared in the event that a settlement agreement between the parties cannot be reached. By the time a case is ready for trial, our clients will have spent a great deal of time with our lawyers and staff. You will know what to expect if and when your case goes to trial.
12. What forms of payment do you accept?
We accept personal checks for most services, and we also honor all of the major credit cards.
13. Can I bring a friend or family member with me to my office appointment?
You are certainly welcome to have a friend or family member accompany you to our office. If you are married, and if your own spouse would like to accompany you to the appointment, then he/she will be most welcome. However, in litigation matters, any other family members or friends will not be invited to join us during the actual consultation. This is for your own protection. The conversations that you and the attorney will be undertaking in consultation are considered privileged and confidential. This protective privilege may be lost by inviting 3rd persons (such as friends and other family members) to sit-in with the attorney and prospective client during a consultation. However, if a friend or other family member’s participation in the conference is determined to be vital or extraordinarily helpful, then arrangements can be made for their limited participation without jeopardizing your privacy.