How much does it cost to hire a St. Petersburg accident injury attorney? So I get this question a lot because there’s a lot of misunderstanding out there with uh, members of the community about how exactly the payment of the lawyer works in an accident case compared to other types of cases. So for example, you may have, um, gone through some type of family law case. Maybe you had a criminal charge, maybe you had some type of civil dispute. The way those billing practices work are totally different than what you experience in the injury field. In, for example, in a criminal case, lawyers usually charge flat fees. Uh, in a family law case or a civil dispute, lawyers charge by the hour, they usually ask you for a retainer and they charge DPI a lawyer. But in all accident cases, lawyers work on a contingency and that means they get paid a percentage of the recovery of whatever the resolution of the injury case is.
So there are two different tiers of payment to the lawyer. One is just a normal accident case and that it’s a non government entity. And the typical fee on those types of cases is one third. And what that means is the lawyer is entitled to one third of everything. That is that you recover on the case. Now, if the case goes into a lawsuit, most lawyers will then charge 40% but that’s how it works on just general injury cases. Now, if your case is against a government agency or the state, the lawyer’s fees are capped at 25% of the total recovery. So that’s generally how it works. That’s it. That’s what it can contingency basis means that’s how it works with injury cases, whatever your accident may be. Now there’s a second factor, however, and those are costs, and this is a, a little nuanced way for some unscrupulous law firms to be able to, uh, gouge or bill a little more out of, uh, whatever the, the, the proceeds are costs and every lawyer does charge costs.
But costs are generally what the lawyer has had to pay in order to prosecute your injury claim. Now, many costs are legitimate. For example, we have to get your medical records. Um, we have to make photocopies, send faxes, a certified letters. I mean, there are a lot of legitimate costs on any type of injury case, but you need to make sure w whatever law firm that you hire, they’re not increasing those costs. They’re not charging you more than what is reasonable and you don’t have a lot of like soft costs added in. I understand that some law firms use investigators. You need to be careful. An investigator, um, that is within the firm is not being charged to you. Now, if your law firm has gone out and hired a private investigator to research the case, well that’s, that’s a legitimately incurred costs. But again, costs are a way for law firms to make a little extra money.
Um, if you are not paying attention. So you need to be careful. Now, the good news to you is what I’ve seen over the past several years is that costs, at least in my firm, St. Petersburg Personal Injury Attorneys McQuaid and Douglas costs have really gone down. We used to have to order stacks of documents from, like for example, the hospital, well now they just send it to us in a CD. So it may have cost us $200 to get the records five years ago today and costs us $5 for a CD. So that’s really been a benefit and helps put more money in our client’s pockets. So if you do have any questions about the billing practices of another lawyer, or about how exactly works after you’ve been injured in an accident in St. Petersburg, feel free to contact us. I hope this video has answered your questions.
*The above has been transcribed by a third party service and has not been checked for accuracy.
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St. Petersburg Personal Injury Attorneys McQuaid & Douglas
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