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Pinellas County Probate Attorney Fees and Costs

Everyone involved in Pinellas County probate cases wants to know about the fees and costs in probate. In Florida, the attorney represents the personal representative, and the attorney’s fees are payable from estate assets. Here is the manner in which Pinellas County probate attorney James W. Martin charges attorney’s fees in probate cases:

Hourly Rate

St. Petersburg probate attorney James W. Martin charges probate attorney’s fees at an hourly rate of $345. This results in a very reasonable probate attorney’s fee for his probate clients.

His hourly rate is lower than the $375 median hourly rate charged by other Florida attorneys. In fact, more than a third of the lawyers in Florida charge an hourly rate greater than $400 per hour, as reported by The Florida Bar in its 2022 Economics and Law Office Management Survey.

Jim Martin has been able to charge a lower hourly probate attorney’s fee because of his experience and efficiency developed over 50 years of law practice. He taught Law Practice Management at Stetson College of Law for over ten years and has written numerous articles for lawyers on law practice management and the use of technology in law practice.

No Percentage Attorney Fee

St. Petersburg probate attorney Jim Martin does not charge an attorney’s fee based on the size of the estate, even though the Florida Probate Code would allow him to do so. He charges fees only based on his hourly rate times the number of hours he spends on the case.

Attorney’s Hourly Fee Agreement

When the client engages Jim Martin as the probate attorney, an Attorney’s Hourly Fee Agreement may be signed and filed with the probate Court in order to memorialize the agreement regarding fees. The agreement is usually signed electronically by the client and persons bearing the impact of the fees.


The Clerk of Court charges a filing fee of $400 to open a formal probate proceeding, and other costs are incurred in probate, such as bond premiums, filing fees, recording fees, publication fees, title search fees, FedEx, couriers, copies, postage, process server fees, and private investigator fees. These costs are paid by the client in addition to the probate attorney’s fees.

Selection of Attorney

It is important to keep in mind that the selection of the attorney is made at the discretion of the personal representative, who is not required to select the attorney who prepared the will.

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