The best investment you can make following an accident is hiring a personal injury attorney. The right lawyer can help you ensure that you have all the evidence you need to prove who was responsible for your injuries and can offer compelling testimony on economic and non-economic damages you have received to get you maximum compensation.
Many people are concerned about how much a personal injury lawyer costs. You shouldn't let this get in the way of how your case is managed, however, as the right lawyer can be the difference between you succeeding in your personal injury claims or not.
Experienced lawyers will be able to help you negotiate with insurance companies, use your accident report along with medical bills and other evidence to get you maximum compensation, and explain your situation to you in a way that gives you more than just a basic understanding of your case. Contact one of our qualified attorneys at Marks Law Group today for a free case consultation.
Our Decatur personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. This payment structure means that the client does not pay an hourly rate or a flat fee for the case, but rather that the attorney will get a percentage of the settlement awarded in your case.
If you lose your case and receive nothing in compensation, then you do not owe your lawyer anything. This can help make it affordable for any injury victim to get legal help that might otherwise be too expensive. This method of setting lawyer fees also creates an incentive for an attorney to only take cases with real merit, as frivolous lawsuits will only result in them doing plenty of unpaid work.
Your lawyer's percentage will be determined when you hire them, but there are usually several factors that can change the rate. The most common of these will be whether your case is settled before or after filing a lawsuit.
If you settle your case before filing a lawsuit, your attorney will typically get a third of the settlement amount. If you settle after, they will usually get 40%. These numbers will vary from one lawyer to another, but this is the rough area to expect for an attorney willing to work on contingency.
While these percentages may seem high, it is important to keep in mind that it helps to fully incentivize your attorney to maximize your financial recovery, as doing so is in their own financial best interest as well as yours.
Learn More: How to File an Injury Claim in Georgia
The biggest benefit to hiring an attorney that will work on a contingency fee basis is its affordability. Not having to pay for legal expenses upfront means that many people are able to get representation for their case who might not otherwise afford it. This is especially critical for cases that go to court, as having a talented trial lawyer on your side can make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
Another major perk for hiring a lawyer on contingency is that it incentivizes them to fight harder for your case and to present the absolute best argument for you to get the maximum compensation for your damages. Your lawyer will not want to put all the work in only to go unpaid at the end of your case.
In this system, when your lawyer fights for the highest compensation value in your accident claim, they are not only looking out for your best interest, but also for their own financial wellbeing. This is actually a major reason you should look for a lawyer who works on contingency. It gives them a vested interest in obtaining the best possible return for your case.
Personal injury accidents can be stressful and expensive. It is understandable that many people are hesitant when it comes to taking on more financial commitments in these situations. Fortunately, most personal injury lawyers will work for a contingency fee. This allows you to take on the minimum financial risk, while also boosting your odds of receiving fair compensation for your injuries. To take it a step further, many will also offer an initial case consultation for free, allowing you to discuss your legal options and your chances with each.
Lawsuits are expensive to see through. While you may not owe your lawyer for their work unless you win the case, you will still need to pay for various court costs and expenses that can add up along the way. These can include:
Different lawyers will handle these expenses in different ways. Some will bill you as the costs come in, typically with a monthly bill, while others will track the expenses and deduct them from your settlement after winning your case. Estimating these expenses is difficult, as the costs will not be the same across every case, and your trial will get more expensive the longer it runs. That being said a good expectation to set is that court costs and fees will take between 10-15% of your settlement award.
If you have concerns about the costs of court fees and similar expenses, talk to your personal injury lawyer about them upfront. They may be able to help you keep your court expenses to a minimum while managing your case.
By the Georgia Rules of Professional Responsibility, lawyers are required to put contingency fee agreements in writing as a part of their retainer agreement. Make sure you read this agreement carefully, paying particular attention to the contingency fee structure, and how different scenarios might impact the contingency fee percentage your lawyer takes. If you have any questions about the agreement, be sure to ask. A good lawyer will be able to clearly and plainly explain it to you to help clear up any issues.
Once your case has been settled your lawyer will receive payment from the defendant or their insurance company. They will then pass along your portion of the settlement, along with a written statement that details how much they deducted and why.
Your lawyer can only take their percentage from the net of the settlement after deducting allowable expenses.
Some of the most common expenses you will see include:
Your lawyer should include details of the expenses you will need to pay for in your retainer agreement. Following your settlement, they will deduct your expenses from the gross, and then subtract their fee before sending you your financial compensation.
The goal of your case is to get fair compensation to cover damages caused by your accident. To this end your lawyer will look to recover:
After your lawyer has calculated the total value of your personal injury claim they can estimate your payout amount from your case.
If you have been injured in an accident you will want to work with an attorney with extensive experience in personal injury law. They will be able to help you collect witness statements, get a copy of your accident report, and hire experts to conduct an accident reconstruction. It may also be in your best interest to look for a personal injury lawyer who will offer a contingency fee arrangement for your payment.
Our team of attorneys at Marks Law Group has the experience and dedication you will need to get the maximum compensation for your personal injury case. Call our Decatur injury firm today to schedule an appointment for your free initial consultation and see how we can help you!