Why There’s No Fee Unless Your Personal Injury Attorney Wins
You likely hear just about every personal injury attorney claiming their services are “free unless they win”. You might hear a personal injury attorney say this on the radio as like it’s some type of “money-back guarantee”. Truth is, all personal injury attorneys in New York represent their clients on what is known as a “contingency fee”.
What Is A Contingency Fee
A Contingency Fee is a sum of money that a personal injury attorney will receive if they win you compensation for your losses. Generally, they will collect 1/3 of your award. However, if they do not win you any award whatsoever, you are not expected to pay any attorney fees.
Here’s a simple example of how a Contingency Fee works. If you have a personal injury claim arising from an injurious car accident that occurred because of someone else’s negligence or recklessness, and your personal injury attorney settles your case for $90,000, he or she would receive $30,000 (1/3 of your total award).
When you retain a personal injury attorney, you’ll be given a contract to sign acknowledging that you are fully aware of how your attorney’s contingency fee will affect your final award. It’s also important to note that the costs an attorney pays to build your case (hiring expert witnesses, deposition expenses, etc.,) are deducted from your total award before your personal injury attorney deducts his or her fee.
What Is A Sliding Scale Fee?
In New York, Medical Malpractice attorneys work on what is known as a Sliding Scale contingency fee. Essentially, the larger the award they obtain for your losses, the less they can collect from your settlement. If you receive an award up to $250,000, your Medical Malpractice attorney can only collect 30%. If you receive an award anywhere between $250,000 and $500,000, your Medical Malpractice attorney can only collect 25%. If you receive an award anywhere between $500,000 and $1,000,000, your Medical Malpractice attorney can only collect 20%. If you receive an award anywhere between $1,000,000 and $1,250,000, your Medical Malpractice attorney can only collect %15. If you receive an award over $1,250,000, your Medical Malpractice attorney can only collect 10%.