Many personal injury claims often involve minor injuries and may necessarily require hiring a lawyer. However, in cases where the accident caused permanent or long-term injuries or if certain state laws that require legal expertise arise, it may be necessary to hire a lawyer to help with the injury settlement claim. Getting the right lawyer for your insurance claim play a vital role in either winning or losing the case, therefore getting along with your lawyer is just as important. One of the things that may cause friction between you and your lawyer is disagreements over lawyer fees and costs.
In order to avoid disagreements on costs and fees, you should make sure that a written agreement is made between you and your lawyer. If your’ lawyer’s written agreement is made via their law office’s standard, ensure that is also provides specific agreements made between you and your lawyer. Lawyers are often careful about putting the agreement and writing, while most states require personal injury lawyers to do so. Aside from the lawyers’ fees, make sure that the costs are also addressed. Lawyers tend to raise costs without much consideration, therefore you have to make sure that this is prevented and addressed properly. Sometimes you can find this information on their website, other times, you can not.
Personal injury lawyers generally work on a contingency basis; this means their fees are paid only after the case has been resolved. Contingency fee agreements are not cheap – lawyers charged from 33 percent to 40 percent of the settlement fee, although you still have the option to negotiate with your lawyer about their fees. This should be talked on and agreed upon by you and your lawyer before you proceed with the case, and be put on the written agreement. Costs, on legalese, refer to the outside expenses paid for by your lawyer in order to prepare for your case. Many of these costs are unavoidable, but others should be put into the written agreement.
Deciding whether to hire a lawyer or not may depend on the amount of compensation you are expecting to receive: if claim is only small, then it would be better for you to handle the case on your own on the small claims court, however, if the perceived settlement is significantly high it may be worth it to hire a lawyer. Lastly, if you and your lawyer have agreed on a contingency fee, make sure that both of you have also agreed on whether the costs are deducted first or the lawyer’s fees are deducted first from the settlement amount. It is always to your advantage to have the costs deducted first rather than the lawyer’s fee, and many lawyers often choose to go with this course as well.