A Guide to Personal Injury Contingency Fees
You’ve probably heard the commercials. Someone is injured due to the negligence of another person and a television lawyer tells them they don’t have to pay anything for their legal case unless they win. This sounds almost too good to be true, but in fact, this type of arrangement, known as a contingency fee, is common in the personal injury field. The personal injury experts at Grillo Law explain more about this helpful fee arrangement.
What is a Contingency Fee Arrangement?Personal injury attorneys understand that you might not have the financial ability to afford a lawyer to help you recover compensation if you’ve been in an accident that isn’t your fault. They want to make their services available to you even though you might not be able to pay. The way they do this is they arrange to get paid only if you are awarded compensation in court or they are able to settle your case out of court.
A contingency fee is usually a percentage of the amount of money you win or settle for and is determined before an attorney accepts your case. The percentage often ranges between 30% and 40%, though the actual percentage depends on the case and the attorney. If your attorney is unable to secure a financial settlement or award in your case, you won’t owe them anything.
Contingency Fees Help VictimsAs mentioned above, without a contingency fee arrangement, victims might not be able to afford representation, even if they have a strong case. Contingency fees level the playing field for everyone who has suffered an injury at the hands of others. But there are other benefits as well.
Because their fee depends on how much money they recover for you, your personal injury attorney has a huge incentive to fight for every penny you deserve. Since both of you are in the case together and stand to benefit from a high settlement or award, you’ll know you’re getting the best representation possible. Plus, you’ll have access to all the resources your attorney has at their disposal, including investigators, physicians, financial experts and more.
Fee Arrangements Are Determined Up FrontNo matter what type of fee arrangement a personal injury attorney requires, they must be up front about it. Never agree to work with an attorney that doesn’t disclose their fees before taking your case. Otherwise, you might end up with some surprise charges on your bill at the end of the case.
With a contingency fee, an attorney will provide you with a fee agreement that details the percentage they will take from any settlement or award for their services. This agreement will also explain any other fees that are in addition to that percentage, including expert fees, medical record fees, or court fees. Some attorneys will include these fees in their percentage, while others charge extra for them. Only agree to the fee agreement if you accept all fees.
ConclusionWhen you’ve been injured, the last thing you want to think about is how you’re going to pay a lawyer to help you get the compensation you deserve. Fortunately, with a contingency fee arrangement, you don’t have to worry about anything except getting better.
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