We Stress Transparency & Value in Defence Lawyer Fees

The firm offers all-inclusive flat block legal fee quotes, where there are no surprises or hourly rate charges for any criminal or quasi-criminal (regulatory) law trial or appeal defence work. What you're quoted up front is what you pay. There’s never any extra charge for travel time or expenses, with usually the only chargeable disbursements being transcripts or expert witness fees.

The firm stresses transparency and value in billing. At a stressful time of a criminal charge, no one wants financial shocks.

We Offer Five Kinds of Block Fees to Help You

There are usually five kinds of flat block legal fees we offer to clients to provide a comprehensive defence of any criminal charge.

1. Analysis & Resolution Fee - an initial case Analysis & Resolution Fee for all disclosure evidence analysis, Crown pre-trial negotiations, judicial pre-trial presentations, remand court appearances (so you don't need to appear), and any plea and sentencing or preliminary inquiry court days prior to setting a trial date, so that you know the full case against you, what are your chances of a successful defence at trial, and the best resolution of charges that can be negotiated prior to trial.

2. Trial Fee - an additional Trial Fee should you decide to take your case to trial if an acceptable resolution has proved impossible, however our experience is that most cases are concluded during the analysis & resolution phase.

3. Motion Fee -an additional Motion Fee, as it’s possible that during the Analysis and Resolution or the Trial phases of your case, you may need to bring a pre-trial motion which involves a shorter court hearing seeking a ruling from a judge on issues such as compelling the production of additional disclosure or having your charges thrown out because of violations of your rights, with such vitally important motions being at extra cost because their necessity often can’t be predicted at the start of a case (though we’ll include them in your Trial Fee whenever possible);

4. Bail Fee - an optional Bail Fee should you be stuck in jail and need a bail hearing or a bail review in a higher court if you've been denied bail, either when charges were initially laid against you, or because it’s alleged that you’ve breached your bail conditions of release during the prosecution process;

5. Appeal Fee - an optional Appeal Fee if you're dissatisfied with either the conviction or sentencing results at trial. Even if we’ve not represented you at trial, we would be happy to examine your prospects for appeal.

The precise amount of fees ultimately quoted to you for your case are based on the time and effort likely to be devoted to your case. Generally, more serious and complex charges consume more time and effort in court for argument and in the office for preparation, and therefore require higher fees. A simple assault charge will be much less expensive to vigorously defend than complex conspiracy charges. 

Our Defence Fees Are All Inclusive

Our defence legal fees include all disbursements like travel, photocopies, and courier charges. The only extras usually would be expert witnesses and court transcripts, though most cases don't require either. 

When you contact our office, once we have the details of your case you'll be quoted a flat fee, we'll put in writing what that covers, and we'll answer all your questions about the terms of the retainer and fees so that there are no later surprises.

You will usually pay the Analysis & Resolution Fee up front, but not be required to pay for any Trial Fee until we are certain a case must go to trial. 

Typical Fee Ranges for Your Defence

As part of our commitment to transparency in criminal defence fees, we present for your review actual fee ranges that we post online. These fees are based on our decades of experience in the criminal law litigation world, and represent a careful consideration of the best value we can offer our clients.

a. Summary Conviction Offence Analysis & Resolution Fees

Typically the Analysis & Resolution Fee for less serious charges that proceed only in the Ontario Court of Justice (lower provincial court) will be under $5000. This includes:

  • initial advice to client on case prospects & recommended strategy;

  • appear in remand court for client on all required days, which may be numerous appearances (so you don't have to appear);

  • crown disclosure request, review & analysis, plus further disclosure requests, review and analysis as required;

  • Crown pre-trial (CPT) meetings to negotiate resolution, request further disclosure, and narrow triable issues (may be multiple CPTs conducted);

  • judicial pre-trial (JPT) meetings with Crown & judge to negotiate resolution, narrow triable issues, and get court opinion on prospects for case (sometimes more than one JPT required);

  • commission & review expert reports, such as medical expert, psychologist, drug & alcohol testing, or pre-sentence report;

  • negotiate & apply for consent bail variations, such as travel or family contact;

  • final advice to client on results of resolution negotiations, likely prospects of acquittal at trial, and answering of all client questions;

  • appear in plea court with client to resolve case, including argument & representations to court plus presentation of documentary evidence, and sentencing submissions.

b. Indictable Offence Analysis & Resolution Fees

The Analysis and Resolution Fee for more serious matters proceeding by indictment that eventually are heard in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice may require additional court time for a preliminary inquiry (like a mini-trial) at the Ontario Court of Justice to test the Crown's evidence and will often be under $10,000, except for more complex matters with lengthy preliminary inquiries (where fees will largely be a function of number of days in court for the preliminary inquiry). 

In addition to what is already included in the Summary Conviction Analysis and Resolution Fee, the Indictable Analysis and Resolution Fee usually includes:

  • one or more days of court appearances (including preparation) before the Ontario Court of Justice for a Preliminary Inquiry to determine if enough evidence exists to send the case for trial (prelims typically last between one and five days), including preparation and argument at preliminary inquiry as to why client should be discharged by the court (if appropriate);

  • appearances at Assignment Court of Superior Court of Justice to set schedule for potential trial or resolution;

  • Judicial Pre-Trial (JPT) meetings with Crown and Superior Court judge to negotiate resolution, narrow triable issues, and get court opinion on prospects for case.

c. Trial Fees

Any Trial Fee will be a product of the number of days required in court for the trial plus the complexity of pre-trial issues and evidence will affects preparation time required. Cases with many witnesses and many experts will take up far more court days than cases involving only a couple of witnesses. Cases involving pre-trial motions, such as under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms claiming illegal search and seizure, will also consume more time. The vast majority of matters are resolved before trial, which is why we only need to charge you the Trial Fee when we are certain your matter must proceed to trial.

Trial fees typically range from $5000 to $10,000 (in addition to the Analysis & Resolution Fee) except for very complex cases where extra days in court will typically cost approximately $3000 per day plus preparation. The Trial Fee includes:

  • conduct of additional Crown-Pre-Trials (CPTs) and Judicial Pre-Trials (JPTs) to narrow trial issues;

  • analysis of all evidence to develop superior trial defence strategy;

  • identification of witnesses and exhibits required for trial, including securing attendance of witnesses through subpoenas if necessary and requests for further disclosure;

  • preparation of cross-examination questions for Crown trial witnesses;

  • preparation of client & other defence witnesses to potentially testify at trial;

  • attendance in court for all trial evidence days;

  • attendance in court for trial final legal submissions argument;

  • attendance in court to receive trial judgment and possibly deal with sentencing submissions.

Sometimes the circumstances of a case will dictate that a combined single Analysis, Resolution and Trial fee will be proposed, especially for more straight forward summary conviction matters.

d. Provincial Offences Including Highway Traffic Fees

For Provincial Offences proceeding in the Ontario Provincial Offences Court we always offer a combined Analysis, Resolution & Trial Fee where there is only one fee to pay for all phases of a case, as these tend to be expedited matters involving fewer court appearances and exhibits, and shorter trials. Their legal fees are typically $1500 to $2500 depending on complexity of the case, except for some of the most complex cases potentially involving multi-day trials. 

Provincial Offences legal fees include:

  • attendance at all initial court appearances;

  • request, review & analysis of Crown disclosure and requesting further disclosure as required;

  • attendance at resolution meeting with provincial prosecutor to negotiate optimal outcome for case prior to trial;

  • setting of court trial date if required;

  • preparation of client and other witnesses to testy at trial;

  • attendance at trial including preparation to cross-examine Crown witnesses, challenge evidence, and present defence case;

  • submissions on sentencing penalty if required.

e. Bail Hearing Fees to Secure Your Release

Bail legal fees typically based on a bail hearing lasting under a day in court will be $2500 to $3500, except in very complex cases where fees will be higher because of greater preparation and in court time being required. The Bail Hearing fee includes:

  • review and analysis of Crown evidence synopsis;

  • contacting and briefing of sureties to act for client;

  • negotiation with Crown prosecutor for consent release conditions;

  • making financial arrangements for the posting of bail including deposits;

  • preparation of client and other witnesses to testify at bail hearing;

  • attendance at bail hearing, cross-examination of Crown evidence and calling of defence evidence;

  • submissions and legal argument on bail hearing in favour of client’s release including presentation of case law;

  • finalization of bail release conditions.

f. Appeal Fees to Challenge Convictions or Sentences

Appeal fees are based on the complexity of the trial or proceeding being appealed from and the court in which the appeal is proceeding (which could be a local Superior Court of Justice or the Court of Appeal in Toronto). All appeal fees include:

  • request, review & analysis of trial record including all transcripts of oral evidence and documentary exhibits;

  • consultation with and advice to client concerning appeal strategy;

  • preparation of appeal book containing trial record and other required documents;

  • drafting of written factum of legal argument to court (up to 30 pages);

  • preparation of book of authorities of caselaw, academic articles, and policy documents;

  • review and response to Crown's factum and appeal book written materials;

  • attendance before court for argument of appeal;

  • review and analysis of appeal judgment received from court.

Appeals do require the client to pay separately for the cost of the trial transcripts, which tend to be at least $500 per trial day transcribed.

i. Provincial Offences Appeals to Ontario Court of Justice: $5000 (most can be done for this amount, except where the trial was very complex or lengthy);

ii. Summary Conviction Appeals to Ontario Superior Court of Justice: $10,000 & up (most can be done for this amount, except where the trial was complex or lengthy);

iii. Indictable Appeals to Court of Appeal for Ontario: $20,000 to $30,000 & up (fees within that range depend on the complexity and duration of the trial, with very complex or lengthy trials exceeding the range if there were many weeks of evidence and hundreds of exhibits that need to be analysed for the appeal);

iv. Motions on Criminal Appeals to extend time to serve & file a notice of appeal, to admit fresh evidence, or for other relief will add to the cost of an appeal, with the motion's cost depending on whether it will be heard at the same time as the appeal itself, or require an entirely separate hearing day: typically $5,000 to $10,000 in addition to appeal costs;

v. Bail Reviews or Bail Pending Appeal Applications: $5,000 to $10,000 depending on complexity of original bail hearing or bail plan to be proposed. 

All these fees are estimated ranges only. We encourage you to contact our office for a precise fee quote based on your personal circumstances. Our fees are always competitive, and in comparing quotations you should carefully verify exactly what is and is not included in a criminal defence lawyer fee quote. 

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Nos honoraires sont toujours forfaitaires, ce qui signifie que vous n'aurez pas à payer plus que le prix coté. On compte généralement quatre types d’honoraires forfaitaires :

  1. un premier frais pour la résolution, ceci inclus l’obtention et l’analyse de la divulgation, les conférences avec la Couronne, les conférences préparation au procès avec juge, les comparutions préliminaires, le plaidoyer et le prononcé de la peine ou les procédures lors de l’enquête préliminaire au procès avant la fixation de la date d’un procès

  2. dans l’éventualité où il s’avère impossible de trouver un règlement acceptable , un deuxième frais pour le procès ;

  3. si vous êtes en prison un frais facultatif pour effectuer une enquête sur la mise en liberté provisoire ou une révision de la mise en liberté provisoire si un tribunal à refuser votre libération sous cautionnement

  4. si vous êtes insatisfait une déclaration de culpabilité ou un prononcé de peine un frais facultatif pour porter la décision en appel devant un tribunal supérieur

Tous nos frais sont calculés selon la complexité et le temps susceptible d’être consacré à votre affaire. Généralement les accusations graves consommeront plus de temps et effort et par conséquent ceux-ci nécessitent des frais plus élevés. Cette somme comprend les honoraires et les dépenses, y compris les frais de déplacement et administratifs. Seuls les frais pour un témoin expert et les transcriptions ne sont pas inclus.

Lorsque vous communiquez avec notre bureau, nous ferons une analyse préliminaire de votre affaire suivie d’une estimé d’honoraires écrite. De plus, nous répondrons à toutes vos questions et nous ferons un plaisir de vous expliquer les conditions du mandat de représentations en justice.