In our years of experience as personal injury attorneys, we’ve seen an alarming number of individuals decide not to seek compensation for injuries incurred by neglectful people or entities. A lot of victims mistakenly believe that hiring a personal injury lawyer is too expensive and comes with too many legal fees, but the reality is that legal help is affordable. Most personal injury attorneys don’t charge fees upfront and instead collect payment through contingency fees to avoid out-of-pocket expenses.
Here, we will help you understand how attorneys are paid and answer some of your most common personal injury questions so you can feel confident moving forward with your case.
Personal Injury Cases and Contingency Fees
Personal injury attorneys tend to collect payment through contingency fees, which are agreed-upon percentages that he or she takes from your bodily injury settlement amount after you win.
What Percentage Do Lawyers Take for Personal Injury Cases?
This fee tends to be anywhere from 33% to 40%, but there is always room for negotiation. So, if the defendant offers you a settlement of $40,000 and your lawyer’s contingency fee is 40%, your lawyer will get $16,000, and you will receive the remaining $24,000. When you work with a legal firm operating on a contingency fee basis, you’re paying nothing out of pocket.
How Do Personal Injury Attorneys Collect Their Share?
When you agree on a settlement amount, the court will often send the check to your lawyer to ensure they are compensated for the services rendered. After deducting their fees, you will receive the remainder of the settlement amount.
Other Costs Related to Personal Injury Litigation
Sometimes, contingency fees aren’t the only costs associated with personal injury claims. In order to have a successful outcome, your case will require extensive documentation, expert witnesses, trial exhibits, depositions, and more. Every law firm handles costs differently, but many attorneys choose to deduct these costs as well as filing fees from the final settlement amount after the case has concluded. Speak with your lawyer candidly to find out what you will be charged for and how they intend to collect their share to avoid any unexpected surprises.
Common Personal Injury Questions
How Long Does It Take to Settle a Personal Injury Claim?
There is no definitive timeline for any personal injury case. Every injury and circumstance is highly unique, so there’s no way of predicting how long it might take to settle. However, most cases are resolved and settled in no more than two years maximum.
What Are the Steps to Filing a Personal Injury Case in Las Vegas?
The personal injury claims process starts when you consult with an attorney to determine whether or not you have a case. If you do, your lawyer will conduct a full case investigation and review all video surveillance, medical documents, police records, witness testimonies, and the impact your injury has had on your working ability.
The next steps are to request a settlement with a specific amount based on your pain and suffering, medical bills, loss of enjoyment of life, needed medical care in the future, and more. You’ll usually be able to reach an agreement in this stage, but if not, you may need to work with your attorney to file a lawsuit.
Proving Negligence in Personal Injury Claims
Negligence is the foundation of every personal injury case. In order to obtain compensation, you must prove that your injuries were the direct result of a person or company’s negligence.
Proving this involves showing that the defendant had a duty of care to preserve your safety. For example, a driver has a legal duty of care to drive safely so others on the road stay safe. Likewise, a doctor has a duty of care to treat their patient with the level of skill that could be expected by another reasonably skilled position under the same conditions.
After establishing the duty of care, it must be determined that the duty of care was breached by the defendant, who acted in a way that a reasonably responsible person would not in the same circumstances.
Then you have to prove that the negligence was the direct cause of the injury and that you, the plaintiff, should receive monetary damages for the injury.
How to Start a Personal Injury Claim
At a time of physical suffering, emotional trauma, and loss of income, you shouldn’t be left to fight a legal battle by yourself. Make things easier by teaming up with an experienced attorney who can provide you with personal injury tips and increase your odds of obtaining a fair settlement. Contact Shook & Stone today for a free case consultation. We’ll help you start building a rock-solid case that will get you back to normal life as soon as possible.