Retainer Fee

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Retainer Fee'

An upfront cost incurred by an individual in order to ensure the services of a consultant, freelancer, etc. A retainer fee is paid most commonly to individual third-parties who have been engaged by the payer to perform a service for them or on their behalf. These fees are almost always paid upfront and only ensure the commitment of the receiver, but does not guarantee an outcome or final product.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Retainer Fee'

The most common form of retainer fees apply to lawyers, who in most cases require those seeking services to provide an upfront retainer fee, for example $500. As mentioned however, this retainer fee only ensures that services will be rendered and does not equate to other hourly or trial fees which the lawyer or firm may charge during the course of a trial or court proceedings.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Secondary Liability

    A type of legal obligation where one party assumes legal responsibility ...
  2. Common Law

    In the United States, a body of unwritten laws based on precedents ...
  3. Estate Planning

    The collection of preparation tasks that serve to manage an individual's ...
  4. Community Property

    A U.S. state-level legal distinction of a married individual's ...
  5. Excess Judgment Loss

    The amount of additional loss that an insurer is required to ...
  6. Honorable Undertaking

    A reinsurance treaty clause indicating that the agreement should ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. What are some examples of general and administrative expenses?

    In accounting, general and administrative expenses represent the necessary costs to maintain a company's daily operations ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How do dividend distributions affect additional paid in capital?

    Whether a dividend distribution has any effect on additional paid-in capital depends solely on what type of dividend is issued: ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Why can additional paid in capital never have a negative balance?

    The additional paid-in capital figure on a company's balance sheet can never be negative because companies do not pay investors ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. When does the fixed charge coverage ratio suggest that a company should stop borrowing ...

    Since the fixed charge coverage ratio indicates the number of times a company is capable of making its fixed charge payments ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How does additional paid in capital affect retained earnings?

    Both additional paid-in capital and retained earnings are entries under the shareholders' equity section of a company's balance ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How can I find net margin by looking a company's financial statements?

    In finance and accounting, financial statements represent the fundamental means of analyzing a company's financial position, ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    How To Pick The Right Lawyer

    Find out what factors to consider before hiring an attorney.
  2. Budgeting

    Get Through Divorce With Your Finances Intact

    Find out how to split your finances without coming up short.
  3. Taxes

    Tax Court: Your Last Resort

    Appealing an unfavorable or unfair tax ruling may be your last chance to save your finances.
  4. Fundamental Analysis

    Explaining the Common Size Income Statement

    A common size income statement expresses each account as a percentage of net sales.
  5. Professionals

    What Does an Auditor Do?

    An auditor ensures that organizations maintain accurate and honest financial records.
  6. Fundamental Analysis

    Calculating the Net Debt to EBITDA Ratio

    Financial analysts typically use the net debt to EBITDA ratio to determine a company’s ability to pay its debt.
  7. Economics

    How Does an Operating Lease Work?

    Operating lease is a term used mostly in accounting to denote a lease that gives the lessee rights to use and operate an asset without ownership.
  8. Economics

    Understanding Historical Cost

    Historical cost equals the original purchase price of an asset recorded on a company’s balance sheet.
  9. Economics

    What's Recorded in a Cash Book?

    A cash book is an accounting book that records all cash receipts and cash payments before they’re recorded in a business’s general ledger.
  10. Economics

    Explaining Capital Reserve

    Capital reserve is an account on a company’s or municipality’s balance sheet that is dedicated to money reserved for long-term or large-scale projects.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Xetra

    An all-electronic trading system based in Frankfurt, Germany. Launched in 1997 and operated by the Deutsche Börse, the Xetra ...
  2. Nuncupative Will

    A verbal will that must have two witnesses and can only deal with the distribution of personal property. A nuncupative will ...
  3. OsMA

    An abbreviation for Oscillator - Moving Average. OsMA is used in technical analysis to represent the variance between an ...
  4. Investopedia

    One of the best-known sources of financial information on the internet. Investopedia is a resource for investors, consumers ...
  5. Unfair Claims Practice

    The improper avoidance of a claim by an insurer or an attempt to reduce the size of the claim. By engaging in unfair claims ...
  6. Killer Bees

    An individual or firm that helps a company fend off a takeover attempt. A killer bee uses defensive strategies to keep an ...
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!