A lot of people are afraid to call a Greenville personal injury attorney because they think it’ll cost them a ton of money. A lot of our clients are surprised when they find out they can enjoy an initial consultation for free. Of course, most people have seen the tv commercials where personal injury lawyers brag about how they don’t charge their clients a dime until their case is settled. The truth is this is the same for all Greenville injury lawyers.
There’s a good reason why most injury lawyers don’t charge their clients anything upfront. Personal injury lawyers pride themselves on doing an excellent job for their clients. They are willing to put their money where their mouths are. They promise their clients that they won’t owe them a penny if they can’t win their case. This is what is commonly referred to as working on a “contingency.”
Here, we’ll explain how a contingency fee works. We’ll also discuss how much it costs to retain and hold onto an experienced Greenville personal injury attorney. If you’re still confused or have additional questions, all you have to do is call our office. One of our associates will call and set up a date and time for you to come into the office. Or, if need be, we can always conduct our free consultation by Skype or Zoom.
Your Greenville Personal Injury Attorney Doesn’t Get Paid Until You Settle Your Case
It can be hard to believe, but your attorney doesn’t get paid until you win or settle your case. The way it works is quite simple. Your attorney does all the legwork to prove your case. They front all the costs and filing fees. This could include any or all the following:
- The fee to file your personal injury lawsuit
- Copies, postage, and other supplies
- Expert witnesses
- Court reporters
- Fees for service of process
- Transportation to and from court
- Parking fees
These costs can add up. You may be surprised to learn that expert witnesses typically charge close to $500 per hour. Of course, you may not need to hire these experts. If your case settles early enough, there’d be no need to pay them at all.
However, when you file a civil lawsuit, you’re required to share discovery with the other side. Discovery is when you send copies of all the evidence you’ve collected to the defendant’s attorney. In return, they send you any information they have showing that their client wasn’t responsible for your injuries.
This process can be time-consuming and expensive. Your Greenville injury lawyer will keep track of these costs. Most will send you a monthly statement showing how much they have spent thus far. You won’t be in the dark about what kind of costs your attorney is racking up.
How Does Your Contingency Agreement Work?
Most people are familiar with how contingency agreements work. However, it’s worth a brief discussion here. When you decide to retain your attorney’s services, you’ll be asked to sign a retainer agreement. While you won’t be asked to pay any upfront fees, you will be asked to pay a certain percentage later on.
As mentioned above, your Greenville personal injury attorney will keep track of the expenses related to your case. When you finally settle, your attorney will take their 33% right off the top. If you settle for $100,000, for example, your lawyer will take $33,000.
Once your lawyer takes their cut, they will reimburse their firm for any expenses paid in relation to your case. All the fees outlined above have to be paid for. In addition, your lawyer will have to pay any outstanding medical bills that have accrued since your accident. They can’t release your settlement proceeds until this is done.
Alternately, depending on your retainer agreement, they may give you a check and order you to pay any outstanding bills. If you fail to do so and try to keep all the money for yourself, you could be in big trouble.
The insurance company, your mechanic, and other third parties will come after you for their money. You could risk losing additional monies in interest and attorneys’ fees.
Do All Attorneys Operate This Way?
We mentioned in the opening that some people are surprised that personal injury lawyers in Greenville don’t charge anything upfront. You may be more surprised to learn that they’re really the only type of attorney who works this way.
In some branches of law, such as real estate or contract law, clients have to pay a retainer or down payment. Once that retainer has been exhausted, they are sent a monthly bill. They’re expected to pay this monthly bill. This is the complete opposite of what Greenville personal injury attorneys do.
The reason other types of lawyers don’t work on a contingency is that there is no financial incentive to do so. People who are getting divorced or are looking to adopt a baby aren’t going to get a lump sum at the end of their case. It would be unwise for an attorney to handle this sort of case without getting a hefty retainer. Otherwise, you could end up stiffing them when it comes time to pay their bill.
Don’t Wait Too Long to Meet With a Seasoned Greenville Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been hurt in an accident, you will probably need a seasoned Greenville personal injury attorney. Dealing with a legal issue such as this can be overwhelming. Handling it by yourself can be a big mistake. If you miss a single deadline, your case could be dismissed. Rather than risk this happening, you should talk to an experienced Greenville injury lawyer. They can take over the legal side of things while you focus on getting better.
If you’re worried that it’ll cost too much to hire a lawyer, worry no more. You don’t pay anything upfront when you retain one of our associates. In fact, you won’t pay a dime until your case is resolved. As explained above, we operate on a contingency basis. The only way you pay is if you win your case.
The initial consultation is free, so you have nothing to lose. Just call our office and set up a date and time that works for you. Given the current climate, if you’re not comfortable with coming into the office, we can always conduct the meeting via Skype or Zoom.