The Queensland employment law market is a remarkably efficient economic model. There are a broad range of market participants with different styles and service offerings as well as back office overheads. As such the market is presented with a level of quality across the board that generally keeps prices below that of other markets, particularly considering the quality on offer.
Like all economic models though there are flaws and the trend of many firms to “cross-sell” and thereby avoid the market with their non-business critical employment matters to clients at perhaps less than warranted rates has allowed some firms to charge above par rates.
Simply put anything above $600 per hour on employment matters in Queensland is expensive. On business critical industrial relations disputes or particularly important employment matters then bring in the heavy artillery at higher pricing levels is fine and the costs are justified.
On everything else it’s surely difficult to keep a straight face when seeking a rack rate above $600 per hour when over two thirds of our ranked individuals charge below that rate. Only 31% of the market cracked the $600 per hour mark in Queensland employment law and only 12% charged in excess of $700 per hour. Given the quality on offer at boutique and specialist firms charging between $400-$500 per hour there’s a high bar for many of the larger firms to meet at those prices.
Queensland employers confirmed to the national average in adopting alternative pricing. Some 71% of firms use a model outside of the hourly rate with fixed fees on non-contentious matters and capped fees on contentious matters being the most common instances of such.
The use of retainer style agreements, in line with employment generally exceeded the national average with some 24% of firms using this method of pricing.