The Chicago Bar Foundation Justice Entrepreneurs Project (JEP) is a network of independent lawyers who are committed to making quality legal services accessible and affordable for regular people. Lawyers in the JEP offer fixed fees and flexible representation options (like unbundled, a la carte services) to help accomplish this. Their practices seek to be client-centered and emphasize approachability and collaboration between the attorney and client.
JEP network firms are doing things differently from traditional attorneys. What are they doing, and how could their practice innovations benefit you?
JEP network firms are committed to predictable and transparent pricing options for their services, instead of collecting large up-front retainers and charging high billable hour rates. Examples of predictable pricing options include: fixed fees, which can be charged for parts or phases of a case; flat monthly fees (similar to subscription fees) for parts of, or the entire, case; contingency fees (the attorney gets a percentage of the award recovered or settlement); or reverse contingency fees (the attorneys gets a percentage of the money they help you save), just to name a few. These pricing options offer budget conscious legal service consumers more predictability than the ambiguous costs inherent in the billable-hour-rate-structure offered by most attorneys.
JEP network firms are also committed to providing flexible representation options. Instead of only offering you full scope representation (where the attorney handles every part of the case, from start to finish), JEP network attorneys will assess your legal issue, your objectives, and your budget to work with you to design a plan that works for you. Because you remain in control, you can work with your lawyer for as much or as little of the matter as needed. This saves you money and makes it possible for you to get only the legal assistance you need. Please note, however, that this arrangement isn’t appropriate for every legal issue.
JEP Network firms are committed to building practices that put their clients first and adhere to a high set of service standards. Please see the JEP Service Standards to learn more.