Some attorneys work off a contingency fee or take certain types of cases on a contingent basis. Understanding what these fees are, how they work, and how they have the potential to affect your case is key to a positive resolution. Legal expertise is valuable and the costs associated with an attorney’s consulting, paperwork, phone calls, and litigation require revenue. However, attorneys who work on a contingent basis do not collect those legal fees from you up front.
Instead, your contingency fee attorney is paid after a recovery award is obtained. A percentage–typically 30-40% of the award–is paid to the attorney for his or her services and competency in winning the case. If your case is not won, your attorney will not collect his or her fee.Cases That Work On a Contingent Fee BasisNot all cases are suitable for contingency. For example, an attorney who practices criminal defense will typically not accept cases where he or she will be compensated through contingent fees. When there is no possibility of a recovery award–such as with cases involving corporate law, or matters of family law like child custody or support–a lawyer will usually work on a billable hour basis.Types of cases that are suited to contingent fees include, but are not limited to:
- Car accident claims
- Medical malpractice
- Tractor trailer accidents
- Dog bite claims
- Workers’ compensation cases
- Social Security Disability claims
- Civil lawsuits where damages may be awarded to the client
A contingency fee attorney in Kentucky can evaluate your case and determine if it qualifies for contingent fees. If it does, your attorney can draw up a formal agreement that outlines what percentage of the award is contingent and what is expected of the attorney-client relationship going forward.How Contingent Fees Are CalculatedGenerally contingent fees are based on the full award to the client, as opposed to subtracting the percentage only from the net award after offsets like medical liens and case expenses. Calculating contingent fees based on the full award is a better reflection of the value of the legal services provided to you by your attorney, even in cases where you may not recover the full award ordered.Whatever percentage of the award will be taken in contingent fees is typically determined prior to the case in a written agreement between you and your attorney.If you are involved in a legal matter that could potentially be handled on a contingency basis, do not hesitate to reach out to a contingency fee attorney in Kentucky. Legal work done on a contingency fee basis allows you to receive high quality, comprehensive legal services up front with no cost to you until you are compensated by a court.To schedule a free legal consultation with a contingency fee attorney in Kentucky, contact Edwards & Kautz at 866-795-5087.