How Much Does a Georgia Injury Lawyer Cost?
The cost of hiring a Georgia injury lawyer may depend on several factors including the type of fee arrangement, whether your case settles or goes to trial, and how much money you recover from the party at fault in your accident.
Of these, the type of fee arrangement can have the biggest influence over cost. Typically, Georgia injury lawyers will charge accident victims either a contingency fee or an hourly rate.
If you hire a lawyer on contingency, you are agreeing to pay the attorney a percentage of any financial award you receive from the party at fault in your accident, plus expenses. If you hire a lawyer for an hourly fee, you pay the lawyer for any time he or she spends working on your case, regardless of its ultimate outcome.
Contingency fees are the most common type of fee arrangement in personal injury cases. That's because contingency fees offer accident victims several advantages:
- You pay no money up front, nor are you responsible for paying any legal bills while your case is in progress
- You only pay the lawyer if he or she obtains a financial award on your behalf
- Because the lawyer has a financial stake in your matter, he or she has an interest in maximizing the financial award you receive
You can try to negotiate the terms of the contingency fee before hiring an attorney. Among the things you can try to negotiate:
- A lower percentage contingency fee
- For the lawyer to calculate his or her fee based on the net award (after expenses have been deducted) and not the gross award (before expenses have been deducted)
When you hire an attorney for an hourly fee, you pay for the attorney's actual time spent working on your case, plus expenses. You'll owe the lawyer this money regardless of whether you win or lose your case. You'll probably be asked to make a deposit (often called a retainer) at the outset, and you'll be asked to make regular payments toward your bill.
You may find that you're only able to hire a Georgia injury lawyer for an hourly fee, not a contingency fee. This may be a sign that your case is weak or not worth much money. Because most Georgia injury lawyers work on contingency, they usually only take contingency cases that have a strong chance of being successful. Before you decide to hire a lawyer for an hourly fee, make sure you have a realistic understanding of your chance of being successful.
The Cost of Hiring a Georgia Injury Lawyer
When interviewing Georgia injury lawyers, ask each one to walk you through the legal fees and expenses in detail, so you understand how much you're potentially paying. You want to know:
- Does the lawyer charge an hourly fee or contingency fee?
- Do you have to pay any money up front or while the case is in progress?
- Will you owe any money if the case is unsuccessful? If so, approximately how much would you owe?
- How much does the lawyer estimate you could receive if the case settles? If it is decided in court?
- Approximately how much would you pay in legal fees and expenses if the case settles? If it is decided in court?
- Approximately how much money would remain, after legal fees and expenses, if the case settles? If it is decided in court?
After you understand those fees and expenses, you'll have a much better idea of how much it costs to hire a Georgia injury lawyer.
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