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How Much are Lawyer Fees in Personal Injury Cases

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0:00 Introduction
1:00 Personal injury attorneys do not bill by the hour
1:15 What is a contingency fee?
2:20 Positives of contingency fees
2:50 Negatives of contingency fees
3:30 Personal injury attorneys front the costs of a case too
3:55 Make sure your retainer agreement is in writing
4:40 Attorney liens in retainer agreements
5:25 Are personal injury attorney fees negotiable?

Were you involved in a personal injury accident and you’re wondering how much are lawyer Fees in personal injury claims – check out this short video to find out.

Hey everyone, my name is Barry Zlotowicz and I’m a personal injury attorney in Chicago.

A lot of people right after they get in an accident will call a lawyer and one of the questions that I’m always asked is how much are personal injury lawyer fees? Which has always surprised me because I thought it was kind of common knowledge how injury attorneys work.

The first thing I want you to know is that unlike business attorneys or divorce attorneys who charge on an hourly basis, personal injury attorneys generally work on a contingency fee basis.

How do contingency fees work? Well a contingency fee means that injury lawyer do not get paid hourly. Instead, the attorney will take a percentage of the gross settlement if and only if the case settles or is otherwise resolved in your favor.

How much is a typical contingency fee or in other words how much do lawyers charge for personal injury cases? The normal amount you generally hear injury attorney charging is 33.3% of the recovery.

Some may charge you less some more. Often times, attorneys will charge a higher rate if they have to file a lawsuit on your behalf. But this varies greatly by jurisdiction and even by law firm so make sure you ask whoever you’re talking to what they charge.

What are the benefits of a contingency fee? Well you don’t have to pay anything up front. Most average people can’t afford to pay a $2000 or 5000 retainer to a personal injury attorney. Well with a contingency fee you don’t have to – the attorney takes on the case and takes all the risk because if the case falls apart for some reason and there is no recovery, you won’t owe the attorney anything. Generally speaking.

But there are Cons to contingency fees too. I already told you that contingency fees can be a third or forty percent of the gross recovery. Well, that’s a lot of money. The reason is, that all the risk is on the attorney. An attorney might take on a case, spend a couple hundred hours on it, go to trial and lose. And he or she is then out that money.

In addition, an injury attorney will generally front all the costs on your case too. And you generally speaking will only have to reimburse the attorney if there is a recovery. So that’s another huge benefit of this type of arrangement.

Two tips about agreements with lawyers: – first, make sure your lawyer clearly identifies what percentage he or she is going to charge you in writing. The document signed between an attorney and a client is usually called a retainer agreement and reviewing it before signing is important.

The second thing is that usually in the retainer agreement there is going to be something called an attorney lien clause. This is a way for the attorney to protect himself or herself. It means that until the case is settled and resolved, the attorney has an ‘interest’ in the case that he/she can legally enforce.

Now this normally comes up when a client fires an attorney who did a substantial amount of work on the case and the attorney wants to be compensated for that work. Or, I’ve seen a few times where the client will let the attorney do all the work and then try and get out of paying the attorneys’ fees. So the attorneys’ lien protects the attorney from situations like that.

Can you negotiate personal injury lawyer fees? Generally speaking, sure, you can try and negotiate your attorneys’ fees. But that it is no guarantee that the attorney will reduce the fee. As a general rule we don’t reduce fees in order to sign up clients. It sets up a bad precedent. But you never know.

If you have any other questions about how much it costs to hire a car accident lawyer, please reach out to us at info@legalvlogger.com and please subscribe to our channel.

Disclaimer: This video is for entertainment and informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal advice and the accuracy thereof is not warranted or guaranteed. This information is prone to errors and omissions. Use this information at your own risk. Watching this video does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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    1. LawFull

      Hi, generally speaking a personal injury attorney recovers only if there is a recovery. If there’s no recovery there are no attorneys fees. That might vary depending on who you’re working with. If you need a referral to an attorney and you suffered significant injury is let me know. I have a nationwide network of attorneys that I can refer you to.

    1. LawFull

      Morning Joyce, can you clarify what you mean? Attorneys’ fees are dictated locally and also by what you contract for in your retainer. So checking with a local attorney on this might be a better idea. Barry

  1. Dan Moua

    Good Evening, I was in a Car Accident on June 16th, 2021. I have Personal Injury Attorney (obvisouly) that is 33 and 1/3 or 40% of my settlement. Does that mean they take money from my injury and suffering or Injury and Suffering w/ vechile? (My Attorney is only doing my medical and no further works with the vehicle)… Unfortunately, I did do the electrical but I will get that contract though (Imma try)… Also, I’m not at fault in the car accident.

  2. christian arce

    Just finished my personal injury case it’s took about 5 year my gross income it’s 455k medical bill it’s about 134k and I’m only gettin 105k what you think ? I’m felling a got rip off , this is in California and it’s a 40% fees for attorney…..

    1. christian arce

      @LawFullmy case did not went to court and we did not follow a lawsuit and the contract says that it’s 40% if not settled at court or follow a lawsuit, but they are trying to charge me extra 5% in California a don’t think 🤔 it’s legal to do that

    2. LawFull

      @christian arce Hi, I don’t know whether it’s ‘legal’ or not regarding the extra 5%. But, if you signed a contract that says that, then it is probably ‘legal.’ But I’m in IL so I cannot comment specifically on other states’ laws or contracts exactly. As far as the lost wages, yes, we lump lost wages in the gross settlement when we’re determining the amount of attorneys’ fees too…..

  3. Tony Karata

    Can you as a lawyer collect interest on the money that you are owed …. when inaurace company keeps deminishing and dragging your claim ??? When its over the time limitations ….. when you as a lawyer needs to get paid at a point !!! And costumer aswell ….

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