Cease and Desist Cost

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What does a cease-and-desist letter cost? For example, suppose you face harassment, slander, or defamation of character. In that case, you may have considered sending a cease-and-desist letter to the offending party. Let’s explore costs associated with a cease-and-desist and review some general information about these letters.

How Much Does a Cease-and-Desist Letter Cost?

A cease-and-desist letter is a written document requesting that an individual or organization stop a specific action that is causing harm to the party sending the letter. A cease-and-desist letter may also include specific demands with deadlines and notice of taking legal action if the party does not comply with the requests in the letter.

Cease and desist letters should not be confused with a cease-and-desist order, sometimes called a temporary injunction. A cease-and-desist order is an official legal order handed down by a court and is legally enforceable. On the other hand, a cease-and-desist letter is not a legal document. It is merely a demand and threatens a party with legal action.

While a person can draft their own cease-and-desist letter, many hire an experienced lawyer to handle this task. When a cease-and-desist letter comes from a lawyer, it looks more professional. Therefore, it is usually taken more seriously by the receiving party.

Based on ContractsCounsel’s marketplace data, the average cost of a project involving a cease-and-desist letter is $382.11.

What is a Cease-and-Desist Letter?

A cease-and-desist letter serves as a warning to a party whose actions are causing another party harm. The letter will request that the offending party discontinue the action causing harm and let the party know that if they do not adhere to the letter, the sending party is prepared to take legal action.

A cease-and-desist letter is not a legally enforceable document. Instead, it serves more as a warning to an offending party. It puts the party on notice that their actions may lead to a lawsuit.

After sending a cease-and-desist letter, if the receiving party fails to comply with your demands, you can file a lawsuit against them to recover damages you suffered as a result of their actions. In addition, the cease-and-desist letter can be used as evidence in court that you attempted to mitigate the issue before taking legal action.

Cease-and-desist letters are a wise first step if you are experiencing an offending behavior or activity. It can help protect your legal rights and serve as critical evidence in a lawsuit.

Types of Cease-and-Desist Letters?

There are several types of cease-and-desist letters for various kinds of damaging behavior. Some of the most common reasons people send a cease-and-desist letter include:

  • Harassment. Harassment is a vague term that can include different types of behavior like stalking and invasion of privacy. In addition, a cease-and-desist letter can be used to let the offender know that you are serious about taking legal action if the behavior continues.
  • Slander and Defamation. In the age of social media, slander and defamation have become huge issues. For example, suppose a party makes false and damaging statements about you or an entity you are involved in. In that case, a cease-and-desist letter should be sent demanding that the party stop making these statements. In addition, your letter should include why the statements being made are false.
  • Trademark infringement. A company has a registered trademark, and another business attempts to use it. A cease-and-desist letter can be issued demanding the infringing company stop using the mark. A trademark cease-and-desist letter should include a detailed description of the mark and its use date.
  • Copyright infringement. Similar to a trademark infringement, if a party is using, altering, copying, or distributing your copyrighted work, a cease-and-desist letter is the first step to protecting yourself. Your letter must include proof that you own the copyrighted content and how the copyright was infringed upon.
  • Debt collections. If you are in debt, you may be receiving harassing phone calls from debt collection agencies. A cease-and-desist letter can stop the harassment. Your letter should contain the amount that debt collectors are pursuing and the account number associated with the debt.
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Cease-and-Desist Letter Projects

Cease-and-Desist Letter Drafting

It is recommended to hire a knowledgeable lawyer to draft a cease-and-desist letter. When a cease-and-desist letter comes from a law firm, it is more likely to be taken seriously. It shows that the sending party has already consulted with an attorney and is ready to take legal action if necessary.

A cease-and-desist lawyer will know what the letter needs to include, how to send the letter and can guide you through the next steps.

Cease-and-Desist Letter Enforcement

A cease-and-desist letter has no legal standing and cannot be enforced. The purpose of a cease-and-desist letter is to put the offending party on notice.

If the party continues the damaging behavior, proof of sending the cease-and-desist letter may help you convince a judge to grant a cease-and-desist order. The order is legally enforceable.

A cease-and-desist order will prevent the offending party from continuing their behavior until the issue can be resolved in court.

Cease-and-Desist Letter Drafting Cost

A lawyer will charge a client for its time to draft a cease-and-desist letter. The lawyer may also charge consultation fees and other costs associated with completing the task.

ContractsCounsel’s marketplace data shows the average cease-and-desist letter drafting costs are $394.38 across all states and industries.

How Do Lawyers Charge for a Cease-and-Desist Letter?

Lawyers can charge for cease-and-desist letters in a variety of ways. For example, while most lawyers use an hourly fee schedule, some lawyers charge their clients a flat rate.

Hourly Rates for Cease-and-Desist Letters

When a lawyer bills for their time using an hourly rate fee schedule, they inform their client of their hourly rate then bill for the time spent on the case. Lawyers tend to prefer hourly rate fee structures to ensure they will be compensated for all time spent working on a client’s case.

ContractsCounsel’s marketplace data shows the average hourly rate for a cease-and-desist letter lawyer ranges from $200 - $350 per hour.

Flat Fee Rates for Cease-and-Desist Letters

When a lawyer is asked to complete a document drafting task like drafting a cease-and-desist letter, they may opt to charge their client a flat-rate fee. However, after meeting with the client and assessing the project, the lawyer will quote a fee that usually needs to be paid upfront.

The benefit of flat fee billing is that it provides certainty to the client on the project's total cost. However, the client should be sure of what the flat rate includes. In addition, the lawyer may reserve the right to charge additional fees for meetings, consultations, and future services should the matter turn into a lawsuit.

ContractsCounsel’s marketplace data shows the average flat fee rate for a cease-and-desist letter is $382.11.

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