Legal Research and Writing and Litigation Support
Often the needs of a case don't lend themselves to blocks of time for the drafting of a motion for summary judgment or a response to such a motion. That's where our appellate experience can help. We provide first-class legal research and writing assistance for lawyers who either don't have the time to handle time-consuming writing projects or don't have the inclination to do so.
The short of it:
- Alumnus of Texas Tech School of Law, top 15% of class, member of the law review
- 25 years of trial and appellate practice, including first-chair trials and appeals in both state and federal courts
- Peter performs all the research and writing himself, guaranteeing you the benefit of his experience
- We maintain a subscription to Lexis for Texas law and all federal courts
- Concentrations include civil law and federal criminal defense
- Our rate of $200 per hour is a steal
How do I get started?
The best way to contact me is through email. You can use the contact page, or click on the envelope at the top right side of the page. In your email let me know exactly what are needing accomplished and your timeframe for the work to be turned in. This will give me an idea of whether I can schedule your project in with the other projects and cases I am currently working on. If you like, you can call me too. Some of my lawyer-clients prefer to verbally describe the issues at play in a motion or a response than reduce it all to email, especially if there are some sticky evidentiary problems.
What I need from you.
These are the things that I need for every project.
- Deadline. It's important that I know exactly when the finished piece needs to be in your hands (your email inbox), which should be some time before it actually needs to be filed. This allows me to make needed adjustments to my schedule, and allows you time to review my work before you put your name on it.
- Budget. If there is a price or time ceiling I need to know what it is. The projects I've worked on in the past have involved novel issues in idiosyncratic areas of the law. Just figuring out what the law is might take a lot of time. I haven't had any issues with time or hours in the past, but I want to make sure that my lawyer-client and I are in the same ballpark in terms of the amount of research and time a particular project might take.
- Relevant Documents. This is more important than it sounds. For instance, I've had a few cases where I hadn't been provided documents, like affidavits, that were relevant to the project. In every case I need the live pleadings of the parties, the response or motion at play, and the rest of the discovery or other documents that the lawyer-client would want to review himself if he were drafting the motion or response. For some cases this may be virtually the entire file. The very best way to get it to me is to make it all one .pdf file (easily done in Adobe Acrobat). Failing that, email attachments are good. And, failing that, there is always FedEx.
What do you provide me?
I provide you with two files, one a .pdf document and the other a Word document. I draft the .pdf document to be file-ready, with your name, address, etc. If the piece includes exhibits, I provide an exhibit list for you where all you need to do is attach exhibits in the order listed.
I also provide you a Word copy. I've worked hard to perfect the formatting of my own court documents (you can see I use footnotes, contractions, and the Arno Pro font), but some like their own stuff. The Word copy allows you to edit the document to your liking before filing.
I usually also provide you with copies of the top cases relevant to the document. (Some projects involve researching 50 cases or more. I haven't provided my lawyer-clients all my research, but just the authorities most on point.) In one recent project, for instance, I was hired to draft a petition in a real estate case. My lawyer-client was afraid that the case would be dismissed on summary judgment because of a merger clause in the contract. I drafted a petition for him, and included three cases (with highlights) which not only provided him with legal support for a response to summary judgment, but also provided him with a roadmap of what evidence to gather to help win his case. The case settled within three weeks of filing.
When are your fees due?
Technically, the lawyer-client who hires me is our client. I expect that my invoice will be paid upon delivery of my materials. We can discuss other arrangements if necessary.
A large firm asked us to join it in prosecuting a first-party, bad-faith insurance claim as co-counsel. During the course of the litigation, we were asked to draft certain motions and briefs. Below is a redacted portion of a response that we filed to a motion for protection from discovery.
A large law firm filed suit against one of its client's former employees, alleging breach of contract and other causes of action. The former employee invoked the parties' arbitration agreement, but the firm refused to agree to arbitrate. The employee's lawyer asked us to draft a motion to compel arbitration. We've redacted the names of the parties and our lawyer-client because we drafted it to be filed under his own name.
A small law firm was faced with a motion for summary judgment on a construction lien and a request for attorneys' fees under Texas' declaratory judgment law. The firm asked us to draft a response.
Recently, a well-known firm in the state hired us to draft an appellee's brief on a question of federal jurisdiction. Below is a redacted portion of the brief to demonstrate the kind of work we can do for small, trial law firms.
Mr. Kris Landreth
Landreth & Kulesz, LLP
501 W. Abram Street
Arlington, Texas 76010
Mr. Rod Tanner
Tanner & Associates, P.C.
300 Ridglea Place
Fort Worth, Texas 76116
Mr. Daryoush Toofanian
The Rad Law Firm
12900 Preston Road
Dallas, Texas 75230
Ms. Dawn M. Grams, P.C.
P.O. Box 924
Grapevine, Texas 76099
Mr. John Paul Hopkins
The Hopkins Law Firm
918 West Pauline Street
Conroe, Texas 77301