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ER 1.5. Fees

Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of the Supreme Court of ArizonaEffective: January 1, 2023

Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of the Supreme Court of Arizona (Refs & Annos)
V. Regulation of the Practice of Law
D. Lawyer Obligations
Rule 42. Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct
Client-Lawyer Relationship
Effective: January 1, 2023
A.R.S. Sup.Ct.Rules, Rule 42, Rules of Prof.Conduct, ER 1.5
ER 1.5. Fees
(a) A lawyer shall not make an agreement for, charge, or collect an unreasonable fee or an unreasonable amount for expenses. The factors to be considered in determining the reasonableness of a fee include the following:
(1) the time and labor required, the novelty and difficulty of the questions involved, and the skill requisite to perform the legal service properly;
(2) the likelihood, if apparent to the client, that the acceptance of the particular employment will preclude other employment by the lawyer;
(3) the fee customarily charged in the locality for similar legal services;
(4) the amount involved and the results obtained;
(5) the time limitations imposed by the client or by the circumstances;
(6) the nature and length of the professional relationship with the client;
(7) the experience, reputation, and ability of the lawyer or lawyers performing the services; and
(8) the degree of risk assumed by the lawyer.
(b) The scope of the representation and the basis or rate of the fee and expenses for which the client will be responsible shall be communicated to the client in writing, before or within a reasonable time after commencing the representation, except when the lawyer will charge a regularly represented client on the same basis or rate. Any changes in the basis or rate of the fee or expenses shall also be communicated in writing before the fees or expenses to be billed at higher rates are actually incurred. The requirements of this subsection shall not apply to:
(1) court-appointed lawyers who are paid by a court or other governmental entity, and
(2) lawyers who provide pro bono short-term limited legal services to a client pursuant to ER 6.5.
(c) A fee may be contingent on the outcome of the matter for which the service is rendered, except in a matter in which a contingent fee is prohibited by paragraph (d) or other law. A contingent fee agreement shall be in a writing signed by the client and shall state the method by which the fee is to be determined, including the percentage or percentages that shall accrue to the lawyer in the event of settlement, trial or appeal, litigation and other expenses to be deducted from the recovery, and whether such expenses are to be deducted before or after the contingent fee is calculated. The agreement must clearly notify the client of any expenses for which the client will be liable whether or not the client is the prevailing party. Upon conclusion of a contingent fee matter, the lawyer shall provide the client with a written statement stating the outcome of the matter and, if there is a recovery, showing the remittance to the client and the method of its determination.
(d) A lawyer shall not enter into an arrangement for, charge, or collect:
(1) any fee in a domestic relations matter, the payment or amount of which is contingent upon the securing of a divorce or upon the amount of alimony or support, or property settlement in lieu thereof;
(2) a contingent fee for representing a defendant in a criminal case; or
(3) a fee denominated as “earned upon receipt,” “nonrefundable” or in similar terms unless the client is simultaneously advised in writing that the client may nevertheless discharge the lawyer at any time and in that event may be entitled to a refund of all or part of the fee based upon the value of the representation pursuant to paragraph (a).
(e) Two or more firms jointly working on a matter may divide a fee paid by a client if:
(1) the firms disclose to the client in writing how the fee will be divided and how the firms will divide responsibility for the matter among themselves;
(2) the client consents to the division of fees in a writing signed by the client;
(3) the total fee is reasonable; and
(4) the division of responsibility among firms is reasonable in light of the client's need that the entire representation be completely and diligently completed.


Amended June 9, 2003, effective Dec. 1, 2003; Sept. 1, 2011, effective Jan. 1, 2012. Amended on an emergency basis Dec. 5, 2012, effective Jan. 1, 2013, amendment adopted on a permanent basis Aug. 28, 2013. Amended Aug. 27, 2015, effective Jan. 1, 2016; Aug. 27, 2020, effective Jan. 1, 2021.
17A Pt. 2 A. R. S. Sup. Ct. Rules, Rule 42, Rules of Prof. Conduct, ER 1.5, AZ ST S CT RULE 42 RPC ER 1.5
State Court Rules are current with amendments received through November 15, 2023. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through November 1, 2023.
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