Limited Scope Retainers and Self-Reps

Limited Scope Retainer paperwork

Are Limited Scope Retainers Right for Everyone?

You may feel that you have a strong case. Feeling that you have a good case is different than proving that you have a good one. Remember you need to be realistic. I can provide you with a professional outlook on your case. When you hire me under a limited scope retainer, I can do certain parts of your case while you handle other responsibilities. Whether you’re going through a divorce or separation, I can make the process as quick and painless as possible.

What Are Limited Scope Retainers?

A limited scope retainer means you retain me as your agent at an hourly rate to do a particular task while at the same time you remain self-represented. I am not your lawyer “on the court record” which would be the case if you hired me under a general retainer. My name does not appear on your court documents, and I will advise the court when attending for you on a limited scope retainer, that I am your agent on the matter and that I am there to represent you for that particular court attendance only.

As a self-represented litigant, you maintain control over your case, and you are responsible for all aspects of your case. You will speak directly with opposing counsel, and you will receive correspondence directly from opposing counsel unless you instruct me to receive it as your agent. The limited scope retainer ends when I have completed all tasks that you retained me to perform. You will have to enter into a new limited scope retainer with me to fill out another job. In other words, it is legal services performed “a la carte.”

Tasks I Perform

  • Providing confidential drafting assistance
  • Making limited appearances in court as part of the limited scope retainer
  • Implementing an effective strategy, legal information and out-of-court coaching for your court appearances, including at trial.

Questions I Can Help You Answer

  • What you want
  • What is the law
  • What you need to do to prove it
  • How you will prove it

Do not assume that you understand the law or the procedures involved. Just because your friend went through a similar situation does not mean that your case will be dealt with in the same way. The law and the legal process are complicated. Furthermore, the judge and the court staff are not there to hold your hand and help you to prepare your case. Consequently, it is not up to the judge to figure out what you are asking for, how the law applies to your facts and what evidence proves those facts. I can help you to prepare your case in a timely and efficient manner. Most of all, I will save you money and time in the long run.

Written by Lynn Kirwin. Family Law Lawyer at Galbraith Family Law. To book a consultation with Lynn, please click here.

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Lynn Kirwin

Lynn Kirwin has been practicing law for 28 years. She specializes in high conflict family law cases with a focus on resolving them in an expedient and results-oriented manner. She believes in saving the client costs. She offers the option of limited scope retainers. As well, coaches many clients through the process of family court including assisting them with self-representation at trial. Her wide breadth of knowledge has lead her to have published several books on family law as well as other areas of law. She has expertise in child abuse cases having worked as in-house counsel at a Children’s Aid Society and having represented parents in court on child protection cases. She also is a panel member for the Office of the Children’s Lawyer, providing representation for children in court. She volunteers her time as the Chair of a Board for a women’s shelter and as President of the Orillia Law Association. She has two daughters who attend university. She enjoys spending her free time travelling with her husband, road cycling and taking long walks with her two beagles.

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