How much do personal injury lawyers charge? You will be able to answer this question and better understand personal injury lawyer fees once you’ve read this article.
When you’ve sustained a serious injury, you often have a long road of recovery ahead of you. If someone else’s negligent behavior caused your pain and suffering, the road is even longer. You are due just compensation for your pain, suffering, and loss if someone else caused your injury. But you rarely can acquire the compensation on your own.
You need a personal injury attorney to fight for you, making sure you receive a full personal injury settlement. Yet, many people avoid such attorneys. They’re worried that they cannot afford their fees. So let’s get the facts straight today.
How Much Do Personal Injury Lawyers Charge?
If you need a personal injury lawyer, cost should not be the deterring factor. Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This means they collect their fees only after you’ve received your settlement.
What happens if there is no settlement, though? If your case makes it to trial and you lose, then your attorney will collect no fees. The contingency model ensures the attorney will work hard for you. Because if don’t collect damages, then your attorney will not receive compensation.
Most attorneys agree to a percentage contingency fee. This means they receive a percentage of your settlement. Often the settlement is somewhere between 33 and 40 percent of the final settlement. Normally, attorneys receive a third of the settlement. Thus, if you collected $60,000, you would receive $40,000, and your attorney would receive $20,000.
Some attorneys use a sliding scale when collecting their fees. Their contingency fee percentage will go up as the case progresses. For example, they may have a 30 percent fee when your case settles without a lawsuit. Sometimes an attorney will send the information to the other side, and the other side will agree immediately to the settlement amount. In this case, the attorney would receive 30 percent.
If the attorney has to file a lawsuit, then the contingency percentage may go up to 35 percent. Then if the case goes to court, the fee will go up to 40 percent. In these cases, the attorney’s fees will go up as the amount of work they put into the case increases.
As your case progresses, the attorney’s fees will increase as well. It’s important to note that a good personal injury attorney will continue to work hard for you throughout all stages of the case.
What About Extra Expenses?
Preparing a personal injury case takes time and money. There are extra expenses that will come up. When they do, the attorney will typically cover the expenses, keep track of them, and then deduct them from the settlement once you’ve won your case.
Rarely do personal injury attorneys charge their clients for these expenses. These expenses could be as simple as postage or filing fees and as complicated as the fees for investigators, experts, and depositions. Even medical records and police reports come with a fee.
As cases get closer to trial, the costs and expenses will build up. So the sooner you can settle out of court, the more money you will save. A good personal injury attorney understands these fees. They will work hard to settle the case quickly so the client can receive as full of a compensation check as possible without extra fees deducted.
How Do You Pay the Attorney?
Typically, you don’t have to pay the attorney directly. Often the settlement check will go directly to the attorney. The attorney then receives their payment for their services along with the expenses and costs mentioned previously.
When your personal injury lawyer receives the settlement check, they will contact you. They then will send you the itemized list of deductions from the settlement check. This will include their fees along with costs and expenses. If you disagree with this list, the check will go into a trust until you and your attorney resolve the disagreement.
What If I Fire My Attorney?
Often clients become impatient with the tedious process involved in a personal injury case. They want their settlement, and they lose faith in their attorney. When this occurs, you’ll be tempted to fire your attorney and switch lawyers or represent yourself.
When you do this, you’ll still owe your attorney for their fees and the expenses that built up as they worked on your case. the attorney will most likely have a lien for their expenses and fees. Plus, the attorney may even sue you for failing to honor and protect the lien.
A lien is a legal right to assets. In this case, the attorney you hired has the legal right to a portion of your settlement. The lien they have against you means that you owe them money, and they can legally collect it from your assets.
This could include garnishing wages in the future or collecting from the settlement you eventually receive. In that case, you’ll have to share the settlement with both your former and current attorney.
Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
After reading about personal injury lawyer costs, you may feel the temptation to just represent yourself. After all, you’d get to keep the entire settlement. Yes, you’d keep the entire settlement. But with an experienced personal injury attorney, you’re more likely to receive a larger, more just settlement. Insurance companies can bully individuals who represent themselves.
Furthermore, you need to focus your time and efforts on recovering from your personal injury. You’ll need time for physical, emotional, and mental recovery. You will have months of recovery ahead of you just from the trauma of the accident itself.
When you hire a personal injury attorney, you hire someone who understands the court system and how to negotiate with insurance companies. Then you can focus on recovery.
Trust the Process
A typical personal injury lawyer will charge approximately one-third of the final settlement. Furthermore, a good personal injury attorney is worth 33 percent. They will work hard to earn their money and earn you a fair settlement.
Do you need a personal injury attorney? If so, contact us. Our professional, experienced attorneys are ready to help you with your case.