Lawyer fees go up

by | Apr 4, 2021 | Crime & Courts, Local News | 0 comments

Brian Rungano Temba

The Law Society of Zimbabwe (LSZ) has announced new legal fees effective from April 2021.

The cost to hire a lawyer in Zimbabwe now ranges from ZWL$ 2 550 to $29 750 per hour from an unregistered law graduate whose name is recorded by law society to lawyers with over 30 years of experience respectively.

They have also made an alternative charging fee range in United States Dollars from USD$30 to $350 from the same range of expertise.

Although fees are being charged in US Dollars at an exchange rate of 1:85, tariffs have increased by 173.6 percent from their last tariff gazetted in 2019 being RTGS$180 to $2 100 per hour from the least qualified to the most qualified.

LSZ says tariffs charged by lawyers are a direct translation of the actual time spent in personal attendance by a legal practitioner in taking instructions, telephone calls, attendance in court, offices of record, research, preparation, drafting dictations and perusal of letters and documents.

“Where a legal practitioner performs work on instructions emanating from outside Zimbabwe, they shall be entitled to charge a fee similar to that which would be charged by a legal practitioner of comparable experience and ability in the country from which work emanates,” reads the circular from LSZ.

For these services, a legal practitioner is professionally and legally obliged to charge fees which are fair and reasonable in all circumstances inclusive of uncontested divorce cases is now ZWL$ 102 000 or USD$1 200 for the plaintiff and defendant will have to pay ZWL$68 000 or USD$ 800.
Will drafting now costs ZWL$ 34 000 or USD$ 400 to spouse, one or two bequests.

For those looking to sell property or company shares legal services have also been adjusted.

LSZ says for a lawyer to process lease agreements for residential or farm property the clients must pay a fee of ZWL 42 500 or USD$300 or one percent of the selling price.
Business or share sales will be charged at ZWL $ 68 000or USD$ 800 and 2 percent of the selling price

Company formations with share certificates and initial Company Act forms are charged at ZWL$ 42 500 or USD$ 500.

Shop licences now cost ZWL 21 250 or USD$ 250.