In car accident cases and other personal injury matters, it’s common for lawyers to provide clients with a contingency fee payment arrangement. If clients don’t have money to obtain legal representation or pay a lawyer upfront, a contingency fee allows them to pay for legal assistance out of a percentage of the settlement amount. Not only does this payment type provide everyone better access to great legal help, it also ensures a lawyer will work hard to secure a fair settlement for his client.
Paying on a Contingency-Fee Basis
Because many who are injured in car accidents may not have the ability to pay a Rhode Island car accident lawyer’s retainer fee or hourly charge, they can still obtain legal representation by using this contingency fee option—paying the attorney only if he wins a settlement. But there are a few other important things you should know about contingency fees, including:
- The client won’t pay any attorney fees if the case is not successful.
- The attorney accepts financial responsibility for costs related to his work, including the hiring of expert witnesses and investigations.
- If the case is unsuccessful, the client is still responsible for some lawsuit costs such as filing and court fees.
Contingency Fees Benefit Both Lawyer and Client
People who need legal help may be afraid of overpaying an attorney for his work, and attorneys want to help clients resolve their cases as quickly as possible and get paid fairly for the work provided—whether or not the case goes to trial. Contingency fees help each party get what they need because:
- If the lawyer is successful, he is paid a fair percentage from the client’s settlement
- If the lawyer is successful, the client’s injuries and damages are covered
- The client can count on a lawyer working quickly and thoroughly on the case
- The attorney will only take a case on a contingency-fee basis if he sees real opportunity for success
Finally, it’s important to mention that—although the client does risk some cost—there is more risk involved for a lawyer when he accepts a case on a contingency-fee basis because he’s not guaranteed a win. And, if he loses a client’s case, he must absorb the cost for his work.