If you are hurt in an accident caused by someone else, you may need the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer to recover compensation for any resulting injuries and financial losses you suffer. But, many injury victims worry about legal fees and how much it will cost to get a qualified attorney to help before signing a retainer agreement.
The good news is that an initial consultation with a personal injury lawyer is usually free. The great news is at most firms there is no upfront payment of attorney’s fees. However, this typical policy is not an industry standard and not all personal injury law firms function on this type of pay structure. When it comes to retaining legal representation, the following factors will affect the cost of hiring a lawyer.
The Merits of Your San Francisco Personal Injury Case
Most personal injury lawyers in San Francisco offer a free consultation, during which you and the attorney will discuss the merits of your case. What this means is that you will discuss the facts of your case and how likely you are to win compensation.
Compensation may come in the form of a settlement between you and the liable insurance company, or as a judgment awarded to you by a judge or jury in a court of law. You and your attorney must decide together if pursuing the case is even worth it, given the costs involved and the amount of compensation you are likely to recover.
Legal Representation Agreement
If you and your attorney decide that the case should go forward, your attorney will ask you to review and sign a legal representation agreement. This agreement states the terms and conditions about how your attorney will represent you and proceed with your case. Some attorneys also include contingency fee agreements.
The contingency fee agreement also states the percentage of any compensation recovered the attorney will be paid as a fee for his or her services. Contingency fees are typically 30% to 40% and are only charged if the attorney actually recovers compensation on your behalf.
Legal Costs Incurred in a San Francisco Personal Injury Case
The legal representation agreement will also state the types of legal costs you may incur while pursuing your personal injury case. These costs may include expenses associated with the following activities involved in pursuing your case:
- Photocopying and faxing documents
- Interviewing witnesses and taking depositions
- Photographing the scene of the accident
- Obtaining vehicle inspections, and
- Expert witness fees for hiring expert witnesses to testify on your behalf
- Court costs such as court filing fees
Your attorney will advance the funds necessary to pay for all of these costs. As such, the attorney is taking a risk that any compensation eventually received will be enough to cover all the money they invested to advance your case and to compensate them for their time and effort.
Most personal injury cases are settled without the need for a lawsuit. However, if this is not possible, then the case may need to be litigated in court. In which case, the legal cost will also include the court fees for filing a lawsuit.
Your Final Cost
You will not be asked to pay for any of the legal costs or upfront fees established by the contingency fee arrangement, as they will be accounted for by your attorney and charged against any future compensation received for the case. Once a settlement or judgment has been won and received, the attorney’s law firm will deduct the agreed upon contingency fee, along with any expenses they advanced for the case, and you will receive the remaining balance with a copy of the accounting report.
DO YOU NEED A WINNING ACCIDENT LAWYER?
How Can a San Francisco Personal Injury Lawyer Help?
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, recklessness, or wrongdoing, you may be able to hold the at-fault party responsible to compensate you for the following damages:
- The cost of the medical care needed to treat your injuries
- Lost wages and income
- Pain and suffering
- Damage to your property
Our San Francisco personal injury lawyers have years of experience and a long list of successful cases involving car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, rideshare accidents, and others.
If we accept your case, we will work hard for you, invest in your case, and get paid later from the compensation we recover on your behalf. The initial consultation is free, and we operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will owe us nothing unless we win your case.
Establishing a trusted attorney-client relationship with our personal injury attorney is only the beginning. We will fight day and night to get you the medical help you need and the compensation you deserve. Contact Golden State Accident Lawyers today to have your case heard and evaluated by one of our trusted San Francisco personal injury lawyers.