payment for personal injury

Did someone tell you that a personal injury case would be expensive for your injury? Maybe it was a friend or a representative of an insurance company. 

You probably feel torn between getting money from a quick settlement and getting what you deserve. The fact is that you probably do not have to choose. 

How do lawyers make their money?

The most common form of payment for personal injury lawyers is contingency. As per the Cornell Legal Information Institute, a contingency fee is money that attorneys only receive if they represent you successfully. 

This is one of the agreements you make with your lawyer before you start your case. Your contract would have everything right there in black and white. 

Generally, you would agree to pay a percentage of your settlement or court award. This means your attorney has both an ethical and a financial motivation to get you everything you deserve. Representatives from insurance companies do not have the same motivation. 

What are the other costs of a personal injury case?

Lawsuits involve costs other than just your lawyer’s fees. Court fees, for example, are administrative costs that are generally not part of a contingency agreement. There are also some financing fees that you might pay, depending on whether you need to borrow money for any reason. 

That said, it is generally more expensive to take a bad settlement offer than it would be for you to start a lawsuit. Insurance companies often try to minimize their costs in the early stages, leaving you to foot the bill alone if you agree to their lower-than-appropriate offer. 

The economics of contingency fees are complex. Finding an attorney who cares about your case beyond fees could strengthen your chance of getting the best possible outcome.


About the Author

Pam Olsen Personal Injury Attorney

Ms. Olsen has practiced law since 1992. During her law school education and throughout career she knew, if it is not about people, she is not interested. Everything about people interests Ms. Olsen from the simple details of living to the most profound. She began her law career in a skyscraper in downtown Miami representing corporate interests. Within a VERY short time, Pam knew that side of the things in the world was not for her.

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