Buffalo, NY asked in Legal Malpractice for New York

Q: Is it customary for a lawyer to keep the refunded Federal Court filing fee which the client paid?

When a client pays the Federal Court filing fee to her attorney for a case--but--the Court remands the case (with the client's approval) to a lower authority to decide the case---and--the Court refunds the filing fee to the attorney--is it customary that the lawyer keeps the refunded filing fee--instead of refunding it to the client who paid the fee in the first place?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Little Neck, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: I can't speak for other law firms, but I advance filing fees and treat them as disbursements at the close of the case. I do not request filing fees from clients (index nos, RJIs, appeals, etc. - I pay those up front out of my own funds). If for some reason a client HAS ALREADY PAID a filing fee or stenographer fee (where they have come to me with a case that was already in progress), I give them their money back at the close of the case. I treat it as a case disbursement, but one returnable to client, not me. Good luck

Tim Akpinar

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