This website and the domain “www.fergusonlawyer.com” are solely owned and managed by Ferguson & Asociados, a Panama partnership company incorporated in Panama and licensed to practice law in the Republic of Panama, hereinafter ´the Firm´.
Any reference herein to “this Agreement” or “the Agreement” means the Retainer Agreement entered into by and between the Client and the Firm, which can be done by physical document or electronically. All of the below Terms and Conditions are expressly incorporated into and made part of the Agreement.
1. NO GUARANTEES
Client acknowledges that the Firm has not and cannot guarantee any outcome for any matters in which the Firm represents the Client. While no guarantee of outcome has been made, Ferguson & Asociados will diligently represent Client’s interests and will endeavor to perform only those services required by the facts of the case and the law as determined by the Firm.
2. RETAINER FEE AND COST DEPOSIT
Unless otherwise agreed to by Client and Firm in the retainer agreement, Clients agree and acknowledge that Ferguson & Asociados charges for Partner Attorneys at the rate of $250.00 an hour, for Associate Attorneys at the rate of $100.00 an hour, and for Paralegals at the rate of $50.00 an hour for time spent performing work on your case.
Additionally, most Clients will be required to pay a cost deposit—determined by the amount of costs anticipated in the case—which will be held in a separate account (Trust account) than your retainer fee and applied toward any necessary costs incurred on your behalf. Such costs include, but are not limited to, government and notary fees, service of process, courier services, translation, travel expenses if necessary, witness fees, mediator fees, accounting fees, appraisal fees and other expert fees, etc.
3. PAYMENT OF FEES AND COSTS BY THIRD PARTIES
The Firm will only have an attorney-client relationship with the Client, regardless if any third party (such as a guarantor) pays the fees and costs of the Client. The Client acknowledges, agrees and understand that any such third party will not be an intended beneficiary of the Firm’s representation of the Client, and is not considered to be a client of the Firm. Accordingly, the Client should not copy (or forward to) any such third parties, any communications between the Client and the Firm (including any invoices). While the Client has the right to waive attorney-client privilege, the Firm does not recommend any waiver by the Client. Additionally, Client understands and agrees that no such third party will not be entitled to request or receive updates regarding the case or to learn the Firm’s strategy in representing the Client, nor will he or she have a right to object to any invoiced amounts, and that right exclusively belongs to the Client. Nothing within this Agreement should be construed or interpreted as creating an attorney-client relationship between the Firm and any third party, nor should it be construed or interpreted as intending any third party to be an intended third-party beneficiary.
4. FIRM PROPERTY
Client understands and acknowledges that any documentation (and drafts of any documentation) created by the Firm is the exclusive property of the Firm, and the Firm issues the Client a limited and revocable license for use of the document for the sole purpose of the matter set forth above. Client may not use, distribute, disseminate or copy any of the Firm’s documentation or drafts without express authorization in writing and signed by the Firm’s managing attorney.
5. SECURITY INTEREST
The Firm has a security interest and secured claim on all retainers and monies paid to the Firm by the Client (or a Guarantor for the Client). This security interest and secured claim is automatically perfected. Additionally, the Client and any Guarantor agree to execute and file any documents the Firm requests to perfect or continue the perfection of said security interest and secured claim.
- In the event that Client files bankruptcy, Client acknowledges and agrees that the Firm has a secured and preferred claim for any retainers and monies paid to the Firm for the Firm’s services to the Client, as well as for any unpaid attorney’s fees and costs.
- In the event of multiple clients, Client also acknowledges and agrees that any and all payments (including those made by a Guarantor) that are made for the Firm’s representation of the Client, represents a benefit received by each Client, regardless of who made the payment.
- Client acknowledges, agrees, represents and warrants that:
- all payments made to the Firm are made in the ordinary course of business and made according to ordinary business terms, and therefore, are not subject to any disgorgement, claw-back, or avoidance; and
- that Client received the payment or obligation to pay, for value and in good faith, and in exchange for value the Firm gave Client.
- In the event of an attempt by a bankruptcy trustee to disgorge, claw-back, avoid, or otherwise undo any transfer of monies received by the Firm from the Client (including instituting any adversary proceedings against the Firm), Client agrees to fully indemnify and defend the Firm, at Client’s own cost. Client will also cooperate in assisting in the defense of the Firm, at Client’s own cost.
- To the extent allowable by Law, the Client acknowledges and agrees that any fees and costs paid or owed to the Firm for services rendered by the Firm to Client, both pre-petition and post-petition, are not subject to any discharge via bankruptcy, and survive any bankruptcy discharge. The obligations in the Agreement also survive any bankruptcy discharge.
6. BILLING REASONABLE FEES
Unless otherwise agreed to by Client and Firm in the retainer agreement, Clients agree and acknowledge that Ferguson & Asociados charges as disclosed in the above clause 2 for time spent performing work on your case. The fees shall cover and include all time spent representing the Client, including: time spent drafting documents, legal research, travel to and from government offices or Court, etc., telephone conferences, settlement negotiations, administrative time for opening and closing the file, and any other time necessary for your case. Payments made by Clients will first be applied to fees, and then costs. Client also grants Ferguson & Asociados the right to file a charging lien in the case if the Firm must withdraw from the case due to non-payment.
7. CLIENT NON-PAYMENT
If the Firm is in a position where a client has failed to abide by the terms of their Retainer Agreement or other arrangement due to non-payment, the Firm will advise the Client that all non-essential work on their matter has been suspended (matters which could prejudice your case will still be handled as long as we are attorneys of record).
At that point, staff members will cease performing all non-essential work on that file until the non-payment issue is resolved. Please stay current with payments so that we can remain focused on solving your legal matters without interruption.
8. CLIENT’S OBLIGATIONS TO FIRM
In addition to timely payment of fees and costs, Client’s obligations will include the following:
- Ensuring that the Firm has current and working contact information for the Client;
- Timely cooperating with any request for documents by the Firm related to the representation;
- Reasonably and timely responding to communications from the Firm and requests for conferences by the Firm;
- Utilizing the client portal implemented in the Firm’s website;
- Coordinating meetings with the Firm’s attorneys and staff ahead of time to ensure availability; and
- Complying with the terms and conditions of this Agreement, as well as the policies set forth by the Firm.
9. ENFORCEMENT OF THE RETAINER AGREEMENT
- Collection: In the event it becomes necessary to enforce this Agreement for unpaid costs and/or fees, Client shall be charged for the Firm’s reasonable attorney fees for any and all costs associated therewith. In the event of non-payment or a dispute regarding fees and costs owed to the Firm, Client acknowledges and agrees that the Firm will be entitled to the following, to the extent allowable by Law:
- a retaining lien on all file materials as well as Client funds or property in the Firm’s possession, and may be asserted whether or not a suit has been filed; and
- a charging lien on any and all funds which may come into the possession of Client whether through a settlement, sale of real or personal property, inheritance, or any other method.
- Litigation: In the event the parties hereto engage in litigation arising from or relating to any of the terms of this agreement, including but not limited to disputes over unpaid fees and/or costs, the prevailing party shall be entitled to reasonable attorney fees and costs for litigating both entitlement and amount at all stages of litigation, including collections and appeals.
- Governing Law and Jurisdiction: This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Panama, without regard to principles of conflicts of law.
The Agreement (including these terms and conditions) contains the entire understanding of the parties and may not be varied or modified unless in writing and signed by the parties to be affected by the modification. If any provision(s) of this Agreement is judicially declared invalid and/or unenforceable, the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect. The obligations in the Agreement survive execution of the Agreement.
11. BINDING EFFECT
To the fullest extent permitted by Law, the terms of the Agreement, including all benefits derived by any Party pursuant to the terms of the Agreement, shall be binding on all of the Parties and their (as applicable) officers, directors, subsidiaries, agents, employees, immediate family members, spouses, heirs, successors, assigns, administrators, conservators and executors.
12. CLOSING YOUR CASE
At the conclusion of your matter, Ferguson & Asociados will request you to share your experience with the Firm and complete an evaluation, which will help enable us to make any improvements we need.
Firm may file a charging lien on client’s matter should Client fail to pay Firm for services rendered and/or for services under Client’s Retainer Agreement.
14. REVISIONS AND UPDATES TO THE TERMS & CONDITIONS
Regardless of the date the Agreement was signed, the Firm reserves the right to revise and update the Terms & Conditions at its discretion. Client represents that neither Client, nor the principals, officers, partners, and/or members of Client: (i) are identified on any government list of prohibited or restricted parties, including, the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List maintained by the USA, Canada, UK, Panama, United Nations; or (ii) are owned or controlled by or acting on behalf of a party on any such list.a<Z