The cost to hire an attorney for a car accident case is certainly a valid question to ask yourself. If you sustained injuries in a car accident, you may be hesitant to contact a lawyer. This hesitation may stem from the need to sue the other driver so as to receive compensation for your injuries and their associated expenses and losses. You may fear that an attorney will charge you an up-front fee to represent you. You may fear that you don’t have the money to pay. Fortunately, your fears are likely unjustified.
Contingency Fees as a cost to hire an attorney for a car accident
Most personal injury lawyers, including those experienced in car accident cases, charge what is called a contingency fee. Under this kind of fee arrangement, you pay no up-front attorney’s fee. Instead, the lawyer takes his or her fee out of whatever settlement or jury award he or she obtains for you. In other words, if they are unsuccessful in obtaining compensation for you, you owe him or her nothing. Be advised, however, that such a result almost never occurs.
Different lawyers charge different contingency fees, as the lawyers at Cohen & Cohen can explain. For instance, some lawyers charge a flat percentage, usually around 33%, regardless of whether or not your case goes to trial. Other lawyers take a bifurcated approach, charging a lower percentage, such as 20-25%, if they settle your case and a higher percentage, such as 33-50%, if they must conduct a jury trial on your behalf. With this being said, the cost to hire an attorney for a car accident case potentially costs you zero up front fees.
Your lawyer should give you a written employment contract that both you and he or she will sign that sets forth exactly what you will owe in attorney’s fees and when and how you will pay them. The employment contract should also specify what, if any, investigation and court costs and fees you will be responsible for paying in addition to the attorney’s fee.
Free Initial Consultation
If all of this sounds somewhat complicated, you will be glad to know that most personal injury attorneys offer free initial consultations. This is where you talk to the lawyer for free before hiring him or her. Be sure to not only fully advise him or her of the circumstances of your accident and the injuries you sustained, but also to ask questions about his or her fee and how and when you will be required to pay it. It goes without saying that you should never sign an employment or any other type of contract unless you fully understand its terms and obligations.
Finding the Right Lawyer
If you’ve never before required the services of a lawyer, you may wish to ask your family and friends for recommendations. The internet is another good source. Search for personal injury attorneys in your area and then look over the web sites of several. Be sure to check the lawyer’s or law firm’s practice areas to see if they handle cases similar to yours. Some web sites also show you some results the lawyer or firm has had in the past, as well as recommendations by former clients.
Contact us as there is no cost to hire an attorney for a car accident
The cost to hire an attorney for a car accident at Schehr Law PLLC is zero. We are proud to say that we almost exclusively take car accident cases on a contingency fee basis. To learn more about our success and personal injury practice areas, click here.