Everybody wants to know, but nobody’s talking about it… so here’s a quick breakdown of what you can expect to pay your probate attorney by way of statutory fees and hourly fees.

What Are Statutory Fees?

Many people believe that probate attorneys work primarily off hourly fees, and they’re surprised to open a bill that’s thousands of dollars more than what they expected.

That’s because California is one of a handful of states where attorneys charge statutory fees under the California Probate Code.

Statutory fees are sums of money equal to a percentage of the value of the assets moving through probate. In a real estate transaction, your lawyer will bill you for a percentage of the property’s value.

Current Probate Rates for Statutory Fees

The current rates for statutory fees are:

  • 4% of the first $100,000 of the estate’s gross value

  • 3% of the next $100,000

  • 2% of the next $800,000

  • 1% of the next $9 million

Retainers and Hourly Fees

It’s customary to pay an attorney a retainer fee for his or her services. The retainer fee goes toward future work the lawyer will do on your behalf.

For simplicity’s sake, let’s say you paid your lawyer a $1,000 retainer fee, and she bills $100 an hour. She’ll work for 10 hours off the retainer fee you originally paid her, and at that point, she will begin billing you for additional time.

How Do You Find the Right Probate Attorney?

Through more than 100 probate real estate transactions, we’ve worked with dozens of amazing attorneys. We can help you find a probate lawyer who understands what you’re going through and will work hard on your behalf. Check out our recommended attorneys here.

Do You Need to Talk to a Probate Real Estate Expert?

We can help you sell your property quickly and at the right price. Call us toll-free at 800-804-0540 now to tell us what kind of situation you’re looking at and we’ll begin developing a strategy to help you move forward.