Most personal injury lawyers work on a no win, no fee basis. This means they won’t charge anything up front, and you’ll only be charged for their services if they win the case. This practice was put into place to ensure that any victim of an injury could seek the appropriate legal help, even if they did not have the financial resources available to do so.
Typically, lawyers will only take on a case if they believe that there is a reasonable likelihood of winning. So you can rest assured knowing your case involves little risk.
The amount that your personal injury lawyer charges if you win, will be detailed in your contract before the case begins. This amount will come directly out of your settlement cheque.
Factors that determine how much your lawyer will charge
There are many factors that determine how much your lawyer will charge following your win, including the difficulty of your case, the amount of experience and knowledge the lawyer has, and your location. However, the amount charged generally ranges between 15 and 40 percent of your overall settlement. For example, if you receive $50,000 from your suit, you can expect between $12,500 and $20,000 of that to go to your lawyer.
As previously mentioned, the percentage that your lawyer charges may depend on the length and difficulty of the case. For example, if you settle before the case makes it to court, your lawyer will most likely take less than a third of your settlement, because there is much less work and time involved. Cases that go to court, are generally more costly because of the substantial amount of preparation and time that goes into Court hearings. However, you may be able to recover some of your legal costs from the other side if you are successful in your case.
How do I receive my settlement?
Before you receive your settlement, the cheque will be sent to your lawyer. This practice is to ensure that your lawyer receives compensation for their work. Your lawyer will contact you when the cheque has arrived, and they will explain to you how much they will be deducting and why. Then the remaining amount will be sent to you.
Personal injury lawyers will usually use a fraction of the settlement to cover expenses related to the case. In some instances, at least half of the settlement may be used for this purpose. These costs include court fees, medical and police paperwork fees, witness fees, trial exhibits, and investigative fees. If your case does not win, you may be responsible for these fees. However, this will be detailed in your initial contract, and you will be able to negotiate this if necessary. Overall, the fees charged by your personal injury lawyer will be used to help fund a successful trial, and appropriately compensate them for their work.