What is a contingency fee?
In the truest sense of the words, a contingency fee means your lawyer’s fee is contingent upon the outcome of your case. Put differently, you don’t get charged attorney fees unless you win. If your lawyer does secure compensation on your behalf, either through a negotiated settlement or a court verdict, then the attorney receives a fixed percentage of the financial award, excluding costs.
Fees may differ from law firm to law firm, but you can generally expect your lawyer to receive one-third of the monetary award, which is the industry standard. Fees may also be on a sliding scale depending on whether your attorney files a lawsuit or takes your case to trial.
Are costs included in a contingency fee agreement?
Generally speaking, the costs associated with moving your claim forward are not included in a contingency fee arrangement between you and your attorney. Examples include:
- Applicable court costs
- Filing fees
- Expenses to consult with specialists and expert witnesses
- Deposition costs
- Copying fees
- Charges involved with serving summons and subpoenas
What are the advantages of a contingency fee arrangement?
Clients choose to hire lawyers on a contingency fee basis because:
- Your ability to pay for legal help carries no weight if you want to hire an attorney for help with your claim.
- Irrespective of your resources, you get access to the court system.
- Your objectives fall in line with your attorney’s objectives because neither of you receives compensation if your case is lost.
- You don’t get charged for your lawyer’s time and labor if you don’t receive compensation.
- If you do win, your attorney’s compensation comes from the financial award and you don’t have to pay anything out of pocket.
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Don’t get the wrong idea, the insurance company does not have your best interests at heart when you’ve been injured in an accident. Don’t lose sight of the fact that an insurance company is a business and has a financial interest in paying you the minimal amount of money – if anything at all. On top of that, insurance companies have entire legal teams dedicated to protecting their bottom line, meaning you are at a severe disadvantage if you decide to fend for yourself and handle your claim on your own.
We can help you make it a fair fight. Our highly skilled attorneys are no-nonsense negotiators and heavy-hitting trial lawyers who can come up with a plan of attack to pursue the compensation you deserve. To get started, contact us today for a free consultation. We have offices conveniently located in Fort Wayne and South Bend and serve clients everywhere in Indiana.
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