The fee of a lawyer is basically laid down in the Lawyers' Compensation Act (RVG).
The Lawyers' Compensation Act includes three main types of fees: sliding-scale fees, value fees and compensation arrangements.
1. Sliding-Scale Fees
In the entire out-of-court area of civil, administrative and criminal law so-called sliding-scale fees apply. That is, the lawyer determines his fees, considering all the circumstances of the case within a legal framework.
2. Value Fees
Fees are levied in disputes in the judicial area, before local courts, regional courts, higher regional courts, the Federal Court of Justice, labour courts, administrative courts and fiscal courts. They are prescribed in a table of the Lawyers' Compensation Act. Through this system, the fees in processes can be accurately predicted.
The number of the attorney fees that can incurred, depends on the scope of the procedure. Of course, in addition to lawyers' fees, legal fees, witness fees and expert fees are to be considered in a lawsuit. In a civil case, the unsuccessful party must pay for the entire litigation costs. An exception, however, is the labour court procedure. There, in the first instance, each party bears its own legal fees.
3. Compensation Agreements
According to the Lawyers’ Compensation Act, lawyers can also conclude remuneration agreements with their clients. Hourly or daily rates as well as lump-sum fees for a specific activity or consultancy fees may be considered as the calculation model. The legal fees are thus independent of the value in dispute. Compensation agreements are particularly recommended for large consulting clients, in criminal matters and in permanent consultancy contracts.
Important note:: For legal proceedings, compensation agreements which provide for a lower fee than the statutory fee may not be concluded.
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