Does The Costs And Fees In A Personal Injury Case Differ?
There is a big difference between costs and fees from the standpoint of personal injury law. The personal injury lawyer who you hire will immediately inform you of this. He or she will tell you that this is vital to know because it can affect the amount of your final settlement.
You’ll naturally have many financially motivating questions to ask your personal injury lawyer in Redondo Beach when you are the plaintiff in a personal injury accident. You will probably want answers to the following question:
● How much of your final settlement amount will end up in your bank account?
Well, the final settlement amount that ends up on your bank account depends on the terms of the agreement that you initially signed with your personal injury lawyer because it will contain many terms and clauses, related to lawyer fees and case and lawyer costs. Therefore, it’s time to explore this matter further.
How are fees defined in a personal injury case?
You pay a fee whenever your personal injury lawyer charges you for the services that he or she renders to you. Most of the personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means that they don’t get paid until you receive a settlement. You’ll agree upon the percentage of your final settlement which you will pay to your personal injury lawyer when you win. Your lawyer will not be compensated at all if you don’t win your case or claim.
The percentage of your settlement that your personal injury lawyer will receive tends to vary by case or claim. However, most lawyers ask for a contingency fee between 33 and 40 percent of your final settlement before your trial date is set. Your lawyer will receive 40% from that point on. There are some exceptions. If you are pursuing a medical malpractice case, the contingency fees your lawyer can charge are subjected to a ceiling. Lawyers may have to have permission from the judge to levy a contingency fee on cases where either minors or disabled people are the plaintiffs.
How personal injury law defines ‘costs’?
According to personal injury law, the term ‘costs’ refers to all expenses that are incurred from the process of preparing and drafting your personal injury case. This includes the pre-lawsuit, investigation, discovery, and trial periods. Though costs differ by case, they tend to be:
● Fees for filing a personal injury complaint and any other related legal documents.
● Fees for serving the complaint or any other legal document required and desired by the defendant.
● Investigation costs. These include expenses incurred in obtaining medical records, police reports, and of finding credible witnesses.
● Court reporting fees
● Witness fees
● Expert and consulting fees and expenses
● Cost of medication
● Jury fees
● Admin fees
● Travel expenses
Your lawyer will advance all case costs. Make sure that your contingency fee specifies if you are required to pay your lawyer all legal costs. This can save you a lot of money if you don’t receive a settlement.
How to calculate fees and costs
You need to understand how your lawyer calculates your case fees and costs. You could end up paying different amounts if these are calculated before versus after your lawyer calculates his or her fee for defending you. If the costs are subtracted before calculating the fee percentage, you’ll be out less money. Now that you have some understanding of the difference between fees and costs from the standpoint of personal injury law, you’re better prepared to win.