How much does the legal services cost in Kenya

Author: Eunice Karanja

If you are considering hiring an advocate in Kenya, there is one question at the top of your mind: How much do lawyers cost?

Advocates have a reputation for charging high fees and with good reason. One of the reasons why lawyer charge expensively is because being a lawyer is one of the most demanding occupations. Additionally, the process of becoming a lawyer is not only long but also expensive.

While some people are of the view that legal services are exorbitantly priced, my own view is that the term "expensive" is subjective. For instance, just consider for a moment in a scenario where the government or any person is threatening to demolish a house that you have taken years to build. I am sure in such case; you may be more than willing to allocate a substantial budget for procuring a good lawyer.

The legal regime governing the legal fees for advocate in Kenya is Advocates Act and the Advocates (Remuneration) Order. It is important to know that these regulations mainly establish minimum charges and allow room for negotiation grounded in various considerations. These considerations include the lawyer's seniority or expertise, the urgency of your matter, or the complexity of the issues.

While it is an offence for advocates to charge less than what is provided in the schedules of the Advocate Remuneration Order, advocates fees should not be exorbitant. It is therefore important for persons planning to hire a lawyer to familiarize themselves with the schedules of the Advocates Remuneration Order.

Schedule 1 of the Order deals with fees on sales and purchases affecting land registered in any registry;
Schedule 2 deals with legal charges for documents such leases;
Schedule 3 provides for legal fees for formation, incorporation and registration of companies;
Schedule 4 deals trademarks;
Schedule 5 captures fees in respect of business the remuneration for which is not otherwise prescribed.
Schedule 6-8 Legal fees for representation in court or tribunal is found in schedule 6-8 of the Advocates Remuneration Order.

To avoid disputes that follow once an advocate has completed providing you with legal services, it is important for the legal fees to be agreed before legal work is commenced. In many instances, legal fees are amenable to private agreements, affording clients and advocates the opportunity to devise a fee structure or formula that is acceptable to both parties.

You also need to know how various fee arrangements are set up. In Kenya, there are two common payment structures for advocates: hourly fee and fixed fee.

When planning to hire an advocate, just consider how much a good lawyer will cost. A good lawyer will maximize your chances of succeeding in your legal battle. The preferred lawyer, however, does not need to charge exorbitant legal fees. If you have a problem in calculating approximate legal fees payable to an advocate, Advocate Getter will be happy to assist.