When you are setting up a business, you will find that there are some services that you need on a one-off basis, while there are others that it is good to return to again and again. With the latter, it can often be a good idea to put them on retainer. Let’s take a look at what this means, and why it is a good idea for businesses to have a solicitor on retainer.
What is a Retainer Fee?
Rather than pay a fresh fee every single time you have a consultation with a solicitor, you can instead draw up a retainer contract with them. This means that you are essentially block-booking a portion of their time for a certain period – usually on a weekly or monthly basis.
If you have a query that needs to be raised, you can do so freely and your solicitor will work on it. If you go over the hours allocated by the retainer contract, you will have to pay the expenses on top of the usual fee.
Why a Solicitor?
Business and the law go hand in hand, so it is often a good idea to have a solicitor on retainer to help you out with certain issues. For example, your business might work with a lot of temporary contracts, meaning it can be a good idea to have a firm of employment solicitors on retainer to help you manage and write these contracts.
This is just one example of how you could use a retainer fee to your advantage. Even if you just have a quick query to make, you will hopefully be able to get it much faster than if you were to make a fresh enquiry as you have already paid for their time and work.
Building a Relationship
Another great reason to put a solicitor on retainer is that it means that you can begin to build a professional working relationship with each other. Being comfortable with each other’s methods and working preferences will be key for success. Having the bond that is created by the retainer is a great place to start.
If you run into an issue that requires you to work together more closely, you are going to be in a good position to do so. You will already have some understanding as to how to two of you will approach the case, and it might result in more success and fewer arguments as you work towards a conclusion.
For this reason, it is also an excellent idea to work with a firm local to your company, rather than establishing a remote relationship with a firm based elsewhere. For those in the South West, for instance, it makes far more sense to work with an employment lawyer in Bristol than one in London.
All businesses should consider having a lawyer on retainer. There can be so many issues that you come up against as you try to navigate your issue, and having a solicitor by your side can be massively beneficial. If you know that you are going to be making many enquiries or going to need to work with them closely, it is always advisable to find a credible lawyer to build a working relationship with and set up a retainer agreement between you.