The cost of pursuing a case can very quickly get out of hand, contingency fees mean you will not be put of pocket while your case is being settled.
The first thing that you need to know about hiring an accident lawyer is that in most cases, the fees are negotiable. Personal injury attorneys need to eat too, which means they will be trying to make your case as profitable for them as they can, so it is your job to make sure that you are getting what you need out of the deal too otherwise it isn’t going to be worth it and you might as well pursue the case on your own without the injury lawyer, or give up on it altogether.
The whole point of pursuing an injury case is to get the money you are owed, so if you aren’t going to get it by working with a lawyer or pursuing the case yourself then it isn’t worth it to pursue at all.
With that in mind, that is the only time it would be a bad idea to hire a lawyer. In every other circumstance, you want a lawyer to back you up, lend your case credibility, and work inside the system to get you exactly what you deserve, but whether you are hiring a car accident lawyer or a team of Workers compensation lawyers it is going to cost you a chunk of money. Below, we'll give you a good idea of exactly what you are looking at, cost-wise.
Not everyone has a lump sum of cash just sitting in their back pocket to give to a lawyer ahead of time and you certainly don’t want to commit to paying an hourly wage to a lawyer because they work hard and you’ll end up paying a gargantuan amount of money to them. Instead, a lot of personal injury lawyers will take on your case without a fee in exchange for a certain amount of whatever they get for you in court.
This way, you don’t have to pay them anything if you don’t win and they still have a good motivator to win the case. The way this usually works is that you will agree to a certain percentage of the winnings going to them, and most times they will also want to take a fee from the winnings for the cost of pursuing your case.
In most cases you are looking at about 33.3% to 40% of your court award going to the lawyer, after the processing fee is subtracted, so if you are awarded $16,000 in a truck accident then your truck accident attorneys might take $1,000 out of that for case fees, then their 33.3% which amounts to about $5,000.
Ultimately, you could potentially end up paying more or less depending on how well you negotiate and which lawyer you hire. Some will be willing to negotiate this price with you; others will be very firm and if the deal isn’t to your liking then you will have to find another lawyer to work with. The most important thing for you is to ensure that you get the fees settled in writing, that way both you and your lawyer are protected.
This kind of fee arrangement can be very expensive, and it gets more expensive the more you win in the case. This is because this kind of arrangement places all of the risks on your construction accident lawyer or whatever lawyers you are working with and there is very little risk for you. If they don't win the case for you, you don't have to pay them anything, which means their payout needs to be more for it to be worth the risk for them.
The key is to find a good balance of profitability for them, while still getting the amount of money you need to take care of yourself. This can be a fine line to walk but despite all jokes to the contrary, lawyers are people too and they can be reasoned with just like any other person.
Earlier we mentioned that there are certain costs associated with pursuing a case, but what are they? Well, to win a case, you will have to have evidence and unless you have case winning evidence already in your possession that means your work injury lawyers will have to gather some. On top of that, they will also need to pay a certain amount of money to the courts to file the case, and there is a minor cost associated with things like copying papers and making long-distance phone calls if they are necessary.
All of these things are something you need to agree on beforehand. Not only do you need to decide on whether these costs will be deducted before or after your slip and fall attorneys’ fees (always before, never after) but you also have to agree on what they can deduct as a cost. Some things are standard, there will always be a need to copy papers and they will most likely have to gather some evidence and take depositions. This means you can always expect to pay some kind of costs when pursuing a case of any kind.
The cost of pursuing a case can very quickly get out of hand, so when you are negotiating terms and settling amounts, you should make sure to set a limit on how much can be spent on the cost of gathering evidence for your case.
It doesn’t necessarily have to be a hard limit, extending past it can be discussed between you and your lawyer, but there should be a number written down that you are comfortable paying out of your winnings before work is started. This is to prevent you from having to end up paying an exorbitant amount in case fees, then give the lawyer a large sum of the rest of your winnings and come out of the case with very little to show for it.
That said, you should make sure all of this has been detailed beforehand. Also, don’t work with a lawyer that wants to deduct the costs from your winnings after they take their fees, because they are just getting more money out of you that way. Most lawyers will just assume that it is taken beforehand, but make sure that you stipulate this in writing anyway just in case. You don’t want to be taken advantage of any more than they do and that is the whole point of getting everything in writing before you start working together.
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Our Guarantee is “We Win or it’s Free” ® which is essentially the definition of a Contingency Fee plan.
If you are looking to pursue a claim in the Pennsylvania area then you should consider working with us. We understand that if you are out of work due to an injury you can feel like nobody has your back and it is up to you and you alone to find a solution for your situation. Trying to manage paying the bills while losing out on your usual earnings and missing opportunities is extremely difficult.
If you are unsure about the credibility of your case or you just want a professional’s opinion then we free consultations at no cost to you and will ensure that you get the monetary compensation that you deserve.