As a Los Angeles Auto Accident Lawyer, I often receive inquires about contingency fees. While many accident victims understand that the lawyer’s payment is contingent on winning the case, most do not fully grasp the extent to which a contingency fee can insure full compensation for medical expenses and property damage or loss.
Imagine you are involved in an accident. Your injuries prevent you from working, and your savings are insufficient to cover your exorbitant medical bills, let alone pay an accident attorney $300-$500 dollars an hour to represent you. Insurance companies have extensive resources and hire adjusters to protect the company, but who fights for you. The contingency-fee process allows you to be protected, deferring legal expenses until you are awarded a settlement.
Additionally, a contingency fee typically gives an attorney an added incentive to work efficiently and to maximize his or her efforts. While attorneys who work on an hourly basis often win their clients’ cases, a personal injury lawyer working under a contingency fee is motivated to maximize a damages claim because he or she will receive a portion.
Many critics of attorneys claim contingency fees cause frivolous lawsuits. Not true. Personal injury lawsuits require much effort and expense. Personal injury lawyers must enlist experts to help build their case, which can cost them $30,000 to $100,000. Lawyers are not reimbursed for these expenses if they lose the case. It is not unusual for the attorney and staff to put more than 200 hours into a case. Too many lost cases can cause a lawyer to go out of business.
Moreover, jurors-citizens like you-decide settlements and verdicts. Citizens chose to agree or disagree with a lawyer’s argument. The public plays a large role in the outcome of many cases.
Jurors rarely award out-of-control damages. The press cannot sell stories without outrageous headlines. If you go to the law library and look at the number of cases resolved each year in California by jury trial that have made headlines, you will find that the numbers do not reach 1 in 10.
Without contingency fees, you-the victim of someone else’s negligence-would be left to fend for yourself. While some people can handle a small case by themselves, the medium and larger cases should be left to the professionals. If you are interested in the process behind a case settlement, order our free book, 7 Strategies to Settle Your Case. You will soon see the amount of work necessary to win a personal injury case.
James Ballidis is the author of several books on personal injury and an Orange County auto accident lawyer in Newport Beach California. You can call his office to request a free copy of his book at 1 (866) 981-5596 or click here, as long as you are a California resident and suffer from an accident injury. You can also visit his website to read more about personal injury cases: http://www.thecaliforniainjurylawyer.com