There are a variety of fee arrangements available for legal clients.
For instance, attorneys will handle a real estate closing or consumer bankruptcy on a flat fee basis, meaning that the client will pay a set amount to the attorney to cover all of the services rendered.
Litigation may be handled on a hourly or contingent basis. Typically, an attorney handling the defense of a lawsuit will require payment of an upfront retainer, against which the attorney’s time and costs will be billed at an agreed hourly rate.
Personal injury claims are most often based on a contingency fee arrangement. This means that the attorney is compensated by a percentage of the funds recovered through settlement or verdict. That percentage is limited in New Jersey to one third of the first $250,000.00 recovered, and a declining percentage schedule above the first $250,000.00.
Under a contingent fee arrangement, the client does not pay a legal fee unless there is a recovery in the case. In many cases, the client cannot afford or will not agree to pay a retainer or a flat fee on a personal injury claim, but rather expects the attorney to provide representation on a contingent fee basis. The attorney looks to the recovery for payment.
Usually, the attorney will advance the costs of a case, such as the filing and service fees, medical record fees, expert witness retainers and deposition transcript charges, and look first to any recovery in the case to recover those costs.
If a case is filed on behalf of a minor or an incompetent, the contingent fee percentage is reduced to 25%.
Contingent fee arrangements ensure that everyone regardless of financial means has access to the justice system and to seek compensation for their injuries. Call Mr. Whelan today at 732-214-0300 for a free consultation concerning your claim.