What are your private hourly defense investigation rates?

$60 for nonviolent misdemeanor defense.

$75 for violent misdemeanor and nonviolent felony defense.

$90 for violent felony defense and mitigation.


What are your publicly funded hourly defense investigation rates?

We use a matrix tied to the regional GSA per diem rate, ranging from $45-90 .


What is your initial retainer requirement?

$3500 for non-homicide cases.

$5000 for homicides and civil cases.


What are your hourly expert rates?

Greg Walsh                                      $175-350

Dave Clendenin                                $225-450

Jennifer L’Hommedieu-Stankus     $350-700

12 hour minimum for expert services


How do you charge for expenses?

Mileage is at the prevailing IRS mileage rate. Per diem and lodging, when necessary, are at the lower of actual cost or the applicable GSA regional tier rate. Tolls, ferries, and parking are charged in addition to mileage.

Expense may be split equally between multiple clients.

Travel time is billed at 50% of the applicable hourly rate.


What if I can’t afford an investigator or expert?

As the WA Supreme Court determined in State v. Punsalan in 2006, if the state can afford to prosecute you, it must be prepared, when necessary, to pay your defense costs, even if you run out of money after hiring a private lawyer.

It is your lawyer’s duty to petition for adequate funds for needed experts, including investigation. You may not get your preferred person or agency, but you are entitled to an effective publicly funded defense when necessary. The law in Alaska, Idaho, and Oregon is not yet as favorable for defendant funding.

The federal courts have an established system to secure funding for investigation and expert services.


Aren’t private attorneys better than public defenders?

Not necessarily. Most of the best private defense lawyers we know spent many years as public defenders, and many continue working with indigent clients by choice.


Why won’t you talk or work with unrepresented defendants, or accept jail calls?

Jail calls are recorded. Clients tend to try to use us improperly for legal advice. Our relationship is not legally privileged (confidential) until your lawyer contracts us to work on your case.

We strongly urge defendants to avoid talking to anyone about their case until and unless advised by their lawyer.


I’m guilty. What can an investigator, or even a lawyer, do for me?

You may be eligible to plea to a lesser charge. You may be eligible for lenient sentencing consideration. There may be something wrong with the police or prosecutor’s work or information. You may have made a mistake under circumstances the court should consider. You may be in a position to make a deal, or help the government. Or we may know or find something peculiar about your case or the people involved that can help you.

At least consult with a lawyer, even on seemingly minor charges. Normally, the court won’t, and shouldn’t, let you plead guilty without consulting a lawyer.