If you have been hurt in an accident, you may be wary of how much it will cost you financially. The good news is that your legal costs are something that you may not need to worry about. Many personal injury lawyers offer free consultations and may not charge you for services rendered until after you have won your case.
You Generally Only Pay if You Win
If you lose your personal injury case, it is unlikely that you will have to pay the cost of legal representation. Typically, a personal injury lawyer will determine during the consultation whether or not you have a good shot at winning your case. In the event that you are deemed to be unlikely to obtain compensation for your injuries, an attorney will likely decline to take your case.
How Much Does an Attorney Charge?
If you do win your case, the amount that you pay your attorney is usually a fixed percentage of whatever compensation that you receive. This percentage can be negotiated before you make a hiring decision. In some cases, your legal fees will be paid by the party or entity that caused your accident. Attorneys may also bill you for the cost of hiring an expert witness or to to have tests done.
Does the Size of a Firm Impact Legal Costs?
As a general rule, you should expect to pay more for an attorney with a proven track record of getting large settlements for their clients. This doesn’t mean that you should choose a lawyer simply based on price alone. Remember, a quality attorney will be able to get maximum compensation, which could total hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars.
What If You Fire Your Attorney During the Case?
In the event that you change counsel during your case, you are generally obligated to pay both after your case has been resolved. There is also a possibility that two or more attorneys will split any fees obtained in your case. This usually happens when one attorney refers you to someone else who may be better suited to get a favorable outcome in your matter. In such a scenario, the attorney who referred you may charge a finding fee. It is important to note that you are made aware of fee splitting before it happens, and you may need to give your consent before it happens.
What If My Case Takes Years to Resolve?
It is common for a personal injury case to take months or years to come to a resolution. This is because there are many chances for attorneys on either side to ask for a delay in a case or appeal a jury verdict. However, the length of your case generally won’t play a role in how much your attorney charges. Even if your attorney chooses to bill by the hour, you generally are not liable for those charges until you win your case.
All Costs Should Be Stated When You Hire Your Attorney
In most cases, you will be given an itemized list of all the expenses that your attorney expects to incur during a case. While there may be additional costs that a lawyer may not anticipate ahead of time, you must be consulted before any money is spent on your legal defense. Therefore, even if a cost isn’t mentioned prior to the start of your case, you won’t be responsible for paying it unless you specifically agree to do so.
There is no set amount that you should expect to pay for legal services. The complexity of your case, the quality of your legal counsel and how many additional costs are incurred throughout your case will determine how much you are charged. Fortunately, lawyers are bound to resolve a case in a timely and cost-effective manner for their clients.