The ordinary solicitor might gross double what the salary of the president of the U.S. is, however that is a ridiculous comparison.
Turnover is vanity, profit is sanity. A practise with a turnover of 400k will have at least three full time employees to be paid, office rent, indemnity insurance cpd courses, rent, rates, professional body subscriptions, office equipment to maintain, audit fees, bookkeeping fees and numerous other expenses.
This is analogous with people saying restaurants are ripping people off because you can make a plate of chips for 50 cent at home and a restaurant is charging €5 for the same thing. It is absolute nonsense.
why? Overheads are not that expensive in this country. Do you think tthere are other countries where "The ordinary solicitor might gross double what the salary of the president of the U.S."?
true, nobody suggested otherwise. However if every professional had a turnover of 400,000 a year I would say they would be very happy, but that would be crazy. Look at turnover / wages elsewhere.
I know all about the list of overheads / expenses, but if the practice employs 3 solicitors each commanding 200 an hour that is over a million a year if they work reasonably hard and efficiently.
staff in restaurants do not charge 200 an hour for their time.
Why derail your own argument by using such a stupid comparison?
How many solictors run an aircraft like Air Force One?
Do you really think there is a massive cartel going on in regards to fees? If it was possible to charge less and break even people would be doing it rather than leaving the profession. While I agree the fees are excessive so is everything else when it comes to running a business in Ireland rents and insurance especially!
Has anyone one any clue what the malpractice contribution is alone, these days?
Any response now is at risk of getting repetitive.
A senior solicitor (Partner and/or Principal) can charge €200 ph. That is a rule of thumb, it can vary, usually €50 either side. That is what the current market will pay. Individual practitioners don't dictate that.
When billing for legal services you bill per transaction completed. The basis of your charges are set out in a S68 letter given to the client at the outset. Charges are mainly based on time spent and complexity/expertise.
Legal charges are subject to independent oversight known as Taxation. If a client or opposite number are unhappy with a bill of costs they can have it reviewed independently by the Taxing Master.
The ability for a senior solicitor to charge €200 ph for legal professional services is not analogous to that person generating €400k pa. In reality that will not happen and reasons have been given already.
What Barack Obama earns I don't know. I don't see the relevance to this topic. Ditto with other professionals and other countries. I mentioned previously other types of professions to highlight the fact they also charge comparable fees as is the nature of professional services. They are expensive. People are getting a specialised and expert service.
Finally as has been mentioned, like anything, shop around.
The president of the USA will earn a fortune after leaving office from selling books about his time in office, giving speeches and appearing as a guest speaker etc. The salary in office is just pocket money to keep him going.
This just shows a lot of people's blindness to te real costs of running a business and keeping an office open. €400k a year is not a bad income - for a practice. But you're only going to see €400k if your 40hr week is all billable which it isn't.
In addition most solicitors are somewhat light on work at the moment and still have substantial overheads. You can't bill out the receptionist or the rent for the office.
€200 is for the work performed not the solicitors back pocket.
60 euro an hour is one price I heard of one solicitor charging. I suppose he reckons getting 240 for a mornings work is better than getting nothing at all. There are lots of other professionals ( architects, quantity surveyors , etc ) who are finding now they cannot charge greedy celtic tiger prices any more too. The Rip off Ireland of 200 an hour is dead for many people.
You are again showing your inability to comprehend what is being said. €200 per hour is not what a solicitor bills for every hour worked on a particular case. No solicitor actually bills 40 hrs per week to clients, so turnover per solicitor per year is nowhere near €400k.
PLUS a solicitors practise has all of the usual overheads any other business would have as well as extras that only apply to a solicitor's office. One example (admittedly not exclusive to solicitors) is high staff wages. A legal secretary can start on €25-30k per year while a junior solicitor can be at a minimum €40k per year.
On top of that, and exclusive to solicitors are practising certificates (one required for each solicitor in the firm) which cost between €2k-4k per solicitor per year. Let's add in Professional indemnity insurance at €20k (however, this will probably be alot more depending on the age of the firm, type of work and number of solicitors), stamp duty costs for court documents (in the thousands per year), bookkeeping / accounts staff (as solicitors accounts are regulated by the Solicitors Acts and require specialist knowledge). If you're a practitioner involved in litigation, let's add in the money that is very often fronted by solicitors for clients in obtaining expert's reports and testimony which can easily run to over €10k for one case alone. There are many more examples of solicitor specific costs that increase the cost of doing business.
Solicitors are also subject to the usual issues about how expensive it is to do business in Ireland, so high rents and numerous taxes, etc.
If you're complaining that solicitors are still charging Celtic Tiger fees, bear in mind that since the Celtic Tiger, solicitors overheads have not really changed. Wages may have reduced but with the increase in income taxes and other taxes as well as the big one of the increased PII fees, overheads are still the same or similar.
Nit picking I know, but accountants and auditors require practising and auditing certificates (if auditing) to trade.
In my opinion 150-200 is reasonable for a senior solicitor however I would always get a task based price rather than rely on hourly rate (I'd do this for any work I look to get done). For the record I have no involvement in the legal profession.
correct, but in todays marketplace some ordinary solicitors are working for 50 an hour, and glad to get it. Its easy nowadays for people to shop around, be it for architects, dentists, quantity surveyors etc...times are tough and some people will work for 50 an hour when the alternative is zero per hour.
Then do so. Every poster on this thread has encouraged you to shop around. However, as somebody who knows how much the overheads are in a practice I would, personally, shy away from what I think looks like too much of a good deal. But that is each to their own.
over the years I have done so, and some solicitors I know themselves are telling me how they have lowered their prices since the "good times", just as many other people and businesses have lowered their prices. Every business owner would love to charge 200 euro an hour for their employees time
And why shouldn't a business owner if they can? If Lidl charges 20 cent for a loaf of bread it doesn't mean that Donnybrook Fair has to. They are, in large part, catering to different markets and it is up to consumers which they want to shop in. There's nothing stopping a person doing up a brief of the facts of their query, what they want done, and send it to half a dozen solicitors for a quote. You'd do that for putting in a new bathroom so why wouldn't you do it for buying a house, which it seems is altogether a greater venture.
There's enough unemployed solicitors and solicitors with no work that they'll do your conveyance at a loss purely for cash flow. It is about the most competitive market out there. What level of the market you want to shop at is your own prerogative. But at the same time you can't complain at the price of socks in Brown Thomas.
Correct, and it pays to shop around, and indeed such shopping around (in these recessionary times) has resulted in getting someone to now work for a third of what he charged during the celtic tiger boom days. Changed times. Some other professions and businesses are having to reduce their prices too. Rip off Ireland is gone.
If a sock shop sells one pair of socks an hour, they cannot claim a 200 charge for doing so, while cribbing about overheads etc.