If you’ve been in a car accident, you may be wondering whether it’s worth it to hire an attorney to help with the medical bills that are piling up. Although you didn’t think you’d ever need a Bradenton car accident lawyer, once you start researching you’ll be shocked by the number of attorneys who practice in this area. Finding a competent car accident attorney in Bradenton can be overwhelming, but there are things that you can do to make sure you find the best attorney that’ll fit into your budget. Here are some tips to help you ensure that the attorney you hire is charging you a fair amount for the services being performed.
Do I Have a Personal Injury Case?
Most personal injury attorneys are plaintiff lawyers, meaning they’re looking to represent individuals who have been involved in accidents in which they weren’t at fault. If you were the victim in the accident, you probably have a case. Personal injury attorneys will often allow you to come in and have your case evaluated for little or no charge, which can help you to quickly learn if you have a good case.
How Personal Injury Attorneys Are Paid
Most Brandenton accident attorneys charge clients in a unique way. Although other types of attorneys charge an hourly fee, most car accident attorneys charge a contingency fee. A contingency fee agreement is one where the law firm won’t be paid any attorney’s fees unless you recover money (either from a settlement or judgment) in your case. This means that the law firm will pay some or all costs up front and then take a percentage from any insurance settlement or verdict in your case. If an attorney you’re considering tries to charge you any money up front, you may want to continue to look around until you find a good attorney who is willing to work on a contingency basis.
How Much Are Attorneys Paid
Although the percentage that an attorney can receive in a personal injury case varies from state to state, most Bradenton accident attorneys take between 33-40% of any settlement received. The exact amount your attorney will receive is governed by state law, so if your attorney works on a contingency fee you can probably rest assured that they aren’t charging you more than other personal injury firms would. The exact amount they take also depends on if your case settles or not. If your case does settle, attorneys usually are required to take less money if it settles early in the case, particularly if the case finishes before the defendant files a formal answer to your complaint.
Court Costs and Other Expenses
Some attorneys may charge you upfront court fees and other litigation expenses. These fees include filing fees, costs of serving documents on the other side, and costs associated with obtaining medical bills, police reports, insurance records, and other document fees associated with preparing a case for trial. Many firms require you to pay these fees as they become due, so make sure you read your contract carefully before signing if you’re worried you may not be able to cover these types of expenses during a case. It’s also important to remember that your case may take several years to complete, so these costs could end up being fairly expensive. As a general rule, larger firms are more willing to cover all upfront costs during your case.