If you have been injured in a Fresno personal injury accident through someone else’s negligence then you are entitled to compensation for the injuries you have suffered. The amount of compensation you are entitled to will depend on many factors including the extent and severity of your injuries, the extent to which the defendant was negligent and the amount of non-economic damages (pain and suffering) that you can prove among other factors. In order to obtain the maximum compensation to which you are entitled, you should retain the services of an experienced Fresno personal injury attorney to represent you in your case. If you are like many victims, however, you may be asking yourself “how can I afford to hire an attorney?” While all attorneys operate differently, the Fresno personal injury attorneys at Ledger & Associates offer the following explanation of a contingency fee arrangement as a way to retain an experienced attorney to represent you in your personal injury case.
The concept of contingency fee arrangements as a way for an attorney to receive payment for services rendered grew out of the gross disparity between the economic circumstances of most victims and most defendants in personal injury cases. Years ago, if a victim was injured by a defendant that had the financial resources to hire an attorney then the victim frequently received nothing for her injuries. Even worse, a victim might actually pay an attorney and still walk away with nothing – essentially putting her in a worse situation than she was before hiring the attorney. As a way to level the playing field so to speak, attorneys began to accept cases on a contingency fee basis. Today, most states limit the type of cases that an attorney can accept on a contingency fee basis but personal injury cases are almost always allowed to be taken on a contingency fee basis.
A contingency fee works by allowing the attorney to accept representation of the plaintiff (the victim) without the need for the victim to pay the attorney any money up front. The attorney will then receive a percentage of the settlement or jury award as payment when the case is finished. In this way, the victim is able to obtain legal representation without expending any additional money. Since the attorney receives nothing unless he obtains compensation for the victim it is obviously in his best interest (as well as the best interest of the victim) for him to win the case and obtain the maximum compensation amount possible. The bottom line is that the more money the attorney gets for the victim, the more compensation the attorney earns as a result. Everyone wins under a contingent fee arrangement.
The percentage that your Fresno personal injury attorney will receive should be clearly explained to you when you hire him and in most cases will be reduced to writing and signed by both the client and the attorney. This eliminates confusion on the part of the client with regard to how the fees are calculated and exactly how much the attorney will earn. The contingent fee percentage that your attorney receives may be slightly higher of your case goes to trial as there is obviously more work involved – as well as more risk – when a Fresno personal injury case goes to trial.
For a free and detailed evaluation of your personal injury case, please contact the Fresno accident attorneys at Ledger & Associates at (559) 859-0121 or toll-free at 1-800-300-0001. You may also visit the firm online at www.ledgerlaw.com or in person at 516 W Shaw Avenue, Fresno, California.
Fresno, CA 93704