The big question that everyone asks is “How much is this going to cost“? Obviously, fee costs are at the forefront of every person’s mind every time they have a legal issue. Our structure at Artim Law is to have a flat fee basis whenever possible, specifically on credit card defense cases. A flat fee means that you know the cost of doing business up front with no surprises down the road. The fee is the fee and it’s paid one time, up front, before any legal work is commenced. It makes it very easy for a client to do a cost-benefit analysis. If I pay X and the result is Y is it worth it to me to retain this attorney? We strive to make sure that the answer to that question is always YES! This sort of flat fee structure isn’t possible in every circumstance but it is a goal that we work for on most legal issues. If the case is larger and it’s difficult to precisely estimate the amount of legal work then we can move on to a staged flat fee agreement. An example of this type of fee would be where the client is charged an initial retainer for a particularly large or difficult case. If the case resolves by a defined point then that’s the end of the agreement and no additional fees are due. However, if the case proceeds beyond that defined point, then a second fee is due and owing to continue the representation. This staged flat fee structure is a rarity in our business model but there are certain situations where it is necessary.
There are various factors that affect a fee quote. Among them are:
- The size of the case;
- The location of the case;
- The court where the case will be handled;
- The name of the creditor or “Plaintiff”;
- The Attorney or law firm that is representing the creditor;
- The desired result (are you trying to win the case outright or simply work on a negotiated settlement?
This is the important information that I need when you contact our firm. It’s OK if you don’t have all of this information, but please provide as much as possible.
Violations and Lemon Law cases
Certain other cases require no upfront fee whatsoever and never require an out of pocket expenditure by our clients. These include claims against debt collectors under the FDCPA, claims against reporting agencies under the TCPA and new vehicle Lemon Law cases under the PA Lemon Law. If a debt collector violates your rights by harassing you or suing for more than the amount that it actually due and owing, or if it commits any other violation of your rights, we can file a claim against them at no cost to you. The debt collector will literally pay our legal fees for suing them. (They’re obviously not happy about that… but that’s their problem and not yours).
For PA Lemon Law cases, the fee is typically a percentage of the recovery. In other words, if you settle the claim for X dollars then our fee is a portion of X. We feel that there is a certain comfort in knowing that you won’t have to pay any legal fees or costs out of pocket for these types of cases.
We want to make it as easy as possible for you to get legal advice. In that regard, our business model allows us to handle everything about your case remotely… that is, you never have to come into my office for anything. The initial consultation can be done by phone or via Zoom meeting. All communication is done via email, fax, phone, text, or U.S. Mail. Low overhead allows us to have lower legal fees. You win, I win. Neither one of us has to leave our home to discuss your legal issues.
As far as defending credit card and debt collection lawsuits, we’ve had a pretty successful run here over the last decade or so. We’ve compiled a list of the collection agency lawsuits that we have completed to date from 2009-2018. (This list does not include our active lawsuits, merely those that have been litigated to completion, and I will not disclose my clients’ names due to confidentiality promises that I make to each client). While I cannot guarantee the outcome of any lawsuit, and I cannot guarantee that you will encounter the same success as my previous clients, I like to think that our track record speaks for itself. This list is accurate as of December 31, 2018.
|Creditor||Number of Clients||Total Amount Saved|
|Advantage Assets II, Inc.||14||$12,923.70|
|American Express Bank||13||$176,298.63|
|Arrow Financial Services||46||$244,290.20|
|Atlantic Credit & Finance, Inc.||26||$163,446.64|
|Barclays Bank Delaware||15||$71,303.32|
|Bureaus Investment Group||3||$22,169.31|
|Commonwealth Financial Services||10||$135,767.41|
|Crown Asset Management||6||$29,832.18|
|Erin Capital Management||1||$14,427.21|
|Equable Ascent Financial||6||$27,979.69|
|FIA Card Services||38||$572,352.12|
|First American Acceptance Co.||4||$26,223.32|
|Four Seasons Investments||2||$14,938.65|
|GE Money Bank||4||$18,184.35|
|Harvest Credit Management||4||$29,989.54|
|Hilco Receivables, LLC||1||$14,231.57|
|Hudson & Keyse, LLC||1||$8,011.10|
|LVNV Funding, LLC||201||$853,907.67|
|Main Street Acquisitions, LLC||15||$88,657.29|
|Midland Funding, LLC||443||$1,723,723.36|
|North Star Capital Acquisitions||10||$67,873.26|
|Palisades Collections, LLC||11||$75,296.94|
|Portfolio Recovery Associates||201||$873,937.22|
|Pro Credit Solutions||1||$8,242.12|
|Security Credit Services||8||$39,164.36|
|Target National Bank||1||$2,153.97|
|Unifund CCR Partners||18||$281,405.99|
|Vion Holdings, LLC||3||$10,641.51|
We’ve also handled about 125 National Collegiate Student Loan Trust cases to the tune of $2,467,131.39 included in the above results. As you can see, the results are staggering. Almost $15,000,000.00 in debt cases, completely defeated. The clients in the above list have paid a grand total of $0 towards the alleged debt listed in their lawsuits.
To be fair, we have settled several American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Citibank, Discover, and TD Bank cases in 2009-2018. On certain original creditor cases, like those just mentioned, negotiation of the debt is a proper remedy. We are able to settle these cases, most times, for a fraction of the amount that is due and owing. There are also certain situations where it’s necessary to settle with a junk debt buyer and we have accomplished that goal for many of our clients. The circumstances and desired end result dictate our course of action on any legal matter.
If you have a credit card company or a collection agency attempting to collect a debt from you, please contact my office at 412-823-8003, visit our Contact page or send an email to Attorney Greg Artim