It wasn’t your fault you were injured, so you shouldn’t have to pay for it. You already have to pay for it emotionally and physically, but the financial aspect should be handled by the party responsible for the injury. To get the most from your lawsuit, you may want to hire a lawyer with the experience it takes to succeed. How much does it cost to hire a lawyer? What are the other fees you should be aware of?
The Cost of a Lawyer
Many personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. This means the lawyer’s pay is contingent upon the case being won. When you receive a settlement, the lawyer fee will come out of it. If you happen to lose the case, there will be no lawyer fee. This often means you’ll get better representation because a lawyer won’t take a case unless he or she is confident it can be won.
Contingency fees vary by lawyer, but many charge around 33%. This means if your settlement was $90,000, the lawyer would receive $29,700 and you would receive $60,300. Some lawyers have a contingency fee sliding scale, which protects both the lawyer and the client in the event the case is resolved more quickly. For example, the other party might accept an early demand letter, which would end the case right then. Your lawyer might take a smaller percentage than if the case went all the way to court.
Aside from your lawyer fees, there are other expenses you’ll have when you’re dealing with a personal injury case. In many situations, the lawyer pays for these as they arise, and then receives reimbursement from your settlement, but that’s not the case for every lawyer. You would need to discuss this issue ahead of time so you’re not surprised when a lawyer informs you there’s a charge due right away for a deposition or other legal matter. Some of those fees include:
- Investigators and investigations
- Medical reports
- Postage and filing fees
- Transcripts and depositions
- Expert witness fees and testimonies
- Police reports
- Trial exhibits
Every personal injury case is unique, so you shouldn’t assume the cost is going to be one amount because you know of someone who paid that in the past. Speaking with a legal professional, you can learn more about the process of personal injury cases and what yours might end up costing. Contact a personal injury lawyer to get started.