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Limited Scope Representation

I want some help and coaching through the legal system.

Limited scope representation is a way for a person to be able to afford legal help by limiting the amount of work a lawyer does for them.

Through limited scope representation, a lawyer can provide legal advice, help with paperwork, coach you through the legal system, and more.

 

General Information about Limited Scope Representation

 

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    What is Limited Scope Representation?

    Limited scope representation is a way for a person to be able to afford legal help by limiting the amount of work a lawyer does for them. This is also known as ”unbundled services.” In a limited scope arrangement, the lawyer and client agree that the lawyer will only do a certain list of things for the client. The remainder of the tasks and responsibilities in a case are the sole responsibility of the client

    Example: Lisa needs a divorce, but she cannot afford to hire a lawyer to handle her whole case. She found an lawyer  who would draft her petition for divorce and her divorce decree for a small fee. But she must file the documents with the court and go to the final hearing by herself.

     

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    What should I be aware of when looking for limited scope representation?

    • It is important to talk about all parts of the case with a lawyer before agreeing to the terms of limited scope representation. 
    • Your agreement should be in writing and clearly state the duties that you and the lawyer have agreed that each of you will perform. 
    • Make sure that the lawyer's fee is stated in the written agreement and that both the lawyer and the client sign the agreement.
    • Click here to read more about how to select a lawyer.

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    Important Points to Remember

    • Limited scope representation is new , so you may find lawyers that do not provide this kind of service.
    • Do not be afraid to ask a lawyer about limited scope representation.
    • Do not be afraid to ask a lawyer for a reduced fee or for a payment plan.
    • Not all cases are right for limited scope representation.
      • There are some legal matters which are better served if the lawyer represents the client through the entire process. 
    • If you find that a case has become more complex than you expected, you may be able to reach an agreement with the lawyer to switch from limited scope representation to full representation.

     

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    Working with a Lawyer

    To work well with a lawyer, you should:

    • Follow the instructions the lawyer gives you.
    • Reply promptly to any requests for information from the lawyer.
    • Tell the lawyer the complete truth. Remember, a lawyer is only able to help if they know all the facts. This is especially true for those facts that might hurt your case. 
    • Set a time each week to get a quick (5 minute) case update with the lawyer. Many lawyers have large case loads, so it might take them a while to get back to you, while they handle your case. Setting a time each week to quickly discuss your case will keep you up-to-date and the lawyer on track.
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How do I find a private lawyer?

To contact a private lawyer you will want to contact your local lawyer referral service, or the State Bar of Texas Lawyer referral service. Please see the link below for more information.

Lawyer Referral Services

 

What if I was not able to find limited scope representation?

If you were not able to get limited scope representation please go back to our Types of Help page to search other options you may have. Pay particular attention to the sections on legal advice, and full representation from a private lawyer.  There may also be other special programs available to assist you.