What are case costs and fees? Do I have to repay them?+
Case costs are expenses that the lawyer covers in order to prepare your case.
Some examples of case costs include fees to get the medical bills and records, DMV accident report costs, court filing fees, expenses for depositions and expert witnesses. These are just a few and usually most of these are not needed to settle your personal injury case.
If you don’t recover any money, the case costs can be waived, and our practice is to waive them so you do not have to pay them. This is not true of all law firms, so make sure you fully understand this before you hire a lawyer.
We will be happy to answer any of your questions about fees or costs before you decide to hire us.
How much is the legal fee? I can’t afford to pay a lawyer!+
In injury cases most lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. That means that the lawyer fee is paid at the end of the case if, and only if, a recovery is made. In other words, if the case is lost, there is no attorney’s fee.
Most lawyers also pay up front expenses, like the costs of accident reports, medical records and doctor’s testimony fees. These are reimbursable by the client at the end of the case.
Our contingency fee is 33 1/3 percent on the recovery if the case is settled before suit is filed and 40 percent after suit is filed.
Probably 90% of our cases settle without filing suit and even those that are filed usually settle before going to trial.
Can’t I just settle my own case and avoid an attorney’s fee?+
Yes, you can but in many cases this is being penny wise and pound foolish. If you are experienced in handling personal injury cases, go right ahead. The adjuster you are dealing with may have the following background:
- Usually a college degree or higher.
- Three months or more of intense classroom training in handling accident cases and in accident law.
- Years of experience in handling (read: manipulating) people hurt in accidents.
- Access to their supervisors who have decades of experience and who have settled thousands of cases.
- Training in how to “control” the injured person and the case.
- Knows how to minimize the value of a claim.
- Is instructed to keep injured people away from lawyers.
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“ I was very thankful for the personal attention that was given to me by all of your staff. When you go through something like I did in the fire, people’s attitudes can make a difference! Thanks for everything! ”
— Patricia Hedrick
“ I feel that my case was handled in a very quick but professional manner. I was very pleased and would recommend your firm to anyone in need. ”
— Robin Truitt
“ My case was handled in a very professional manner, it did not have any of the more common aggravations. ”
— Thomas Queen Jr.
“ I like you as my lawyer because you are always there when I need you. ”
— Iman Saleem
“ I’m proud to say that the lawyer I had was very professional and took his job very personally. I will highly recommend him to any person. Very honest man, tells you the truth, not what you many want to hear. Prayers are with the company. ”
— Nadine Green