Every year, millions of people suffer injuries that were not their fault. If you ever experience an accident in which you are not to blame, you should consider hiring a personal injury attorney so that you can claim damages against the responsible party. Many people think it can be expensive to hire an attorney, but in the case of personal injury, hiring an attorney does not in fact have to cost you anything upfront.
The Benefits of a Contingency Fee Structure
Most people would struggle to come up with the amount of money it costs to pay an attorney. Typically, attorneys charge by the hour. In the US, the average hourly rate for an attorney is $47, but some can charge hundreds of dollars an hour.
Due to the fact that most people cannot afford to pay such sums, attorneys who take on personal injury cases, like Nicoletti Walker, use an alternative fee structure. The contingency fee agreement requires you to pay no money for your attorney to begin the case. Instead, the attorney takes his or her fee as a percentage of your final settlement or court award. The cherry on the top is if you do not get a favorable outcome, the attorney does not collect any fees. For you, a contingency fee structure is massively beneficial, as you only have to pay a percentage of any money you are awarded.
What percentage do attorneys take in a contingency fee structure?
A typical contingency fee agreement gives the attorney a percentage of between 33% and 40%. In real monetary terms, that would look like this: if your attorney takes 33% and you receive a settlement offer of $15,000, your attorney would get around $5,000 and you would receive around $10,000.
The percentage taken by the attorney could be drawn up in a fee agreement known as the sliding scale option. That means the contingency fee percentage depends on the stage at which the personal injury case is resolved. For example, if a fair settlement is reached before you have to file a personal injury lawsuit in court, your attorney’s fee will typically be the standard 33%. But if your settlement happens after you have filed a lawsuit, your attorney could receive a higher percentage; which is usually closer to 40%.
Types of Costs and How They Differ to Attorney Fees
The amount you end up paying your attorney out of your settlement amount will also be determined by the precise costs of your case. Some costs are unavoidable. For instance, if your attorney files a lawsuit to protect your rights, there is a required fee for filing the lawsuit. If your attorney proceeds with the lawsuit, costs could include recording depositions, hiring experts, obtaining medical records and police reports, and paying for transcripts, trial exhibits, and investigators.
It is important to realize that the costs like those mentioned above and your attorney’s fees are not one and the same. So, before you proceed with hiring a personal injury attorney, make sure the fee agreement clearly states that the costs will be deducted from the final compensation amount. If the costs are in addition to the attorney costs, you will receive a much lower percentage of the final settlement.
So, how expensive are personal injury lawyers?
At the end of the day, that is not an easy question to answer. If you hire one without a contingency fee structure, you will pay high amounts for each hour your attorney works. You will also have to pay some of the additional costs, like those mentioned above. So, it makes sense to go with a personal injury attorney who offers a contingency fee structure. You will have nothing to pay until you win the settlement. But the precise percentage you pay your attorney will be determined by the factors discussed in this article.Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t miss a thing. Get breaking KHTS Santa Clarita News Alerts delivered right to your inbox. Report a typo or error, email Corrections@hometownstation.com
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