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What is a Contingency Fee Agreement?


If you are wealthy or own a large company, you can afford a team of attorneys who will work round the clock to protect your rights, reputation, and future. But how can someone who is living paycheck to paycheck hire a lawyer, especially if they suffered an injury that forces them out of work? These individuals can typically barely afford to pay for housing, food, and other essentials. Who will represent them when they are victims of negligence?

Fortunately, the legal system enables those with low incomes obtain high-quality counsel through a “contingency fee.” Basically, the plaintiff does not have to pay the attorney up front—or even in the middle of the case. The lawyer only receives pay when he/she has won the case and recover financial compensation on his/her client’s behalf.

The lawyer’s fee is “contingent” on being victorious and that often comes after most of the work is done. At the end of the case, the attorney and the plaintiff will divide the money based on the agreed-upon percentage. The split is generally 1/3 to the attorney, 2/3 to the client if the case is settled before a complaint is filed with the court.

Although rates are typically negotiable, the main principle remains the same: no win = no fee. If the attorney doesn’t win the case, there is nothing to divide. However, the division is quite challenging due to two factors: costs from the case and liens.

The following are the most common costs associated with personal injury cases:

  • Costs of service
  • Medical bills and reports
  • Filing fees
  • Police report
  • Investigation fees
  • Deposition costs
  • Mediation costs
  • Arbitrator costs
  • Expert witness costs

If you have been injured in an accident caused by negligent party in Texas, contact the Law Office of James M. Stanley and request a free consultation with our Fort Worth personal injury lawyer today.

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