Contingency Fee

“A contingency fee means that the lawyer’s pay is based on the success of the case. If their client is rewarded compensation, the lawyer takes an agreed-upon percentage of that compensation as their fee. “

Contingency Fees

Law firms are a business, and just like any business, they need to make a profit. However, not all lawyers are paid in the same way. Sometimes lawyers are paid by the hour while at other times they operate using what is known as contingency fees.

What is a Contingency Fee for a Personal Injury Attorney?

A contingency fee means that the lawyer’s pay is based on the success of the case. If their client is rewarded compensation, the lawyer takes an agreed-upon percentage of that compensation as their fee.

The average percentage for most contingency fees is 33% or 1/3 for Personal Injury Attorneys. This means that a lawyer agrees to work on your case without upfront payment, and if you win compensation your lawyers is paid 33% of your winnings. A contingency fee is always negotiable, a lawyer and client will settle on a percentage and sign paperwork before the work begins.

Other Costs to Consider with Contingency Fees

Contingency fees are relatively straightforward on the surface. For example, you make a 33% contingency agreement with your lawyer. Your case wins you $90,000 in compensation, and your lawyer is paid $30,000, leaving you with $60,000 to take home. However, the legal process has other fees and expenses which can make these calculations more complex.

Bringing a case to court costs money. There are filing fees, payment of expert witnesses, fees for needed documents and transcripts, and more depending on the case. This can easily add up to several thousand dollars in litigation expenses.

Besides litigation expenses, your medical bills will also likely be a part of your compensation. Hospitals and insurance companies can issue a lien on your case which requires that they are paid out of any compensation you receive.

All of these other costs can have a huge impact on your contingency fees and overall reward. For example, let’s say that in our example of a case with a $90,000 reward and a 33% contingency fee there were $20,000 in legal and medical expenses. If your lawyer takes his fee before these costs are deducted, you will have $60,000 from which the expenses of $20,000 will be taken and you will be left with $40,000.

If your lawyer takes the fee after the expenses are deducted, the $20,000 will be taken from the overall $90,000 leaving $70,000. Your lawyer will then get 33% of this $70,000. Thus, your attorney will get $23,100, and you will walk away with $46,900.

Whether you apply the contingency fee before or after the additional expenses makes a difference in the final amounts awarded to your lawyer and yourself. When making a contingency fee arrangement keep this in mind, and remember that you will likely incur expenses that have to be paid out of your settlement in the process of bringing your case before the court. Of course, these expenses may be more or less depending on your case, and you should ask your attorney to advise you on how much to expect.

Pros and Cons of Contingency Fees

Paying an attorney through contingency fees allows you to seek compensation as the victim of an accident even if you do not have the money to pay a lawyer upfront. This type of payment also protects clients because payment is contingent on winning your case.

However, there are some drawbacks to contingency fees. In simple cases, a contingency fee will often ultimately have you paying an attorney more than if you had paid them by the hour. Another potential issue is that if your case is particularly tricky, many lawyers may be unwilling to take it on as a contingency fee case.

 

Key Takeaways for Contingency Fees

  • Hiring a lawyer on a contingency fee allows you to pursue your case without the upfront cost and protects you from significant financial loss if you lose.
  • The average contingency fee is around 1/3 of your reward, but this will vary depending on the difficulty of your case.
  • Do not forget to consider how additional legal and medical expenses might affect your compensation when making a contingency agreement with your attorney.

Contact Us

Honest care • Clear advice • Smart approach

Call Us

(855) 772-6969

Chat Us

Click to Chat

Text Us

(855) 772-6969

Hours

Monday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Tuesday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Wednesday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Thursday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Friday: 8:30am - 12:00pm

Saturday: By appointment

Sunday: Closed

Fax Number: (541) 245-0486

Reach Out

Reach Out

Call Us

(855) 772-6969

Chat Us

Click to Chat

Text Us

(855) 772-6969

Hours

Monday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Tuesday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Wednesday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Thursday: 8:30am - 4:30pm

Friday: 8:30am - 12:00pm

Saturday: By appointment

Sunday: Closed

Fax Number: (541) 245-0486

Southern Oregon

770 S. Front St
Ste. 200
Central Point, OR 97502
Phone: (541) 772-6969

Northern California

630 North San Mateo Dr
Suite 33
San Mateo, CA 94401
Phone: (650) 514-5004

Northern
Oregon

111 SW 5th Street
Suite 3150
Portland, OR 97204

Klamath
Falls

1435 E Main St
Suite B
Klamath Falls, OR 97601

Grants
Pass

160 SE G St
Grants Pass, OR 97526

Southern
California

11601 Wilshire Blvd.
5th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90025

Eastern
Idaho

1417 N 615 E5th Floor
Shelley, ID 83274
Phone: 208-423-3682

Provo
Utah

180 N. University Avenue
Suite 270
Provo, UT 84601

*Walk-in visits are not accepted at all of our locations*

Idiart Law Group - Personal Injury and Immigration Attorneys
Mailing Address:
PO Box 3700
Central Point, OR 97502
Fax: (541) 245-0486

Quick Links

Personal Injury
Videos
News
Blog

Our Promise

We promise to handle each case individually and with care. We take cases many lawyers pass up because we know that you cannot afford to fight the system alone. Give us a call, send us a text, or stop in to discover that for us you are more than a case. Let us tell your story.

Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. Any case results found on this website do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter. Every case is circumstantial. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use

©2021 Idiart Law Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.