30 décembre 2012 ~ 0 Commentaire

Costs to Expect During Litigation

Each Seattle injury lawyer practices a unique fee schedule that may differ from other attorneys�; however, certain principles are over-arching with regard to attorney�s fees, especially during personal injury litigation. Personal injury cases can result in a large payout to the client, but may take many months � or even years � to resolve. Therefore, most Seattle injury lawyers will require payment of a retainer prior to commencing legal work.

What is a Retainer Fee?
A retainer fee essentially guarantees your payment for the attorney�s work and time spent on your case. In the past, it was common for a Seattle personal injury lawyer to log dozens of hours litigating a case, often successfully, only to have the client refuse to pay. When a client pays a retainer fee, the attorney will hold the amount in an escrow account until he has worked enough hours to earn the money. For example, if an attorney bills $200 per hour, a $1,000 retainer fee will remain in escrow until the attorney has spent five hours on the case. When the retainer is depleted, the client must remit additional money.

What Costs Are Typically Included in Addition to Attorney�s Fees?
In addition to the attorney�s hourly wage, fees include office overhead, payroll costs, printer, ink and toner expenses, courier fees, postage, and other built-in costs necessary for litigating a personal injury case. In a particularly large and complex personal injury cause of action, overhead costs to ship discovery materials to other parties can become extremely costly, requiring additional payment from the client. Understand that your Seattle injury lawyer is not pocketing the entire amount of his hourly wage, and probably makes closer to one-third of that amount per hour.

Are Clients Responsible for Other Costs?
Clients will most likely be required to front the costs of any correspondence with a doctor or hospital. Doctors� offices routinely charge a fee for medical reports, copies, and postage. Your Seattle injury lawyer may absorb these costs or may require the client to pay these fees. Insurance companies commonly require voluminous copies of all medical bills, police reports, witness statements, or lost income information which may require payment of additional copying expenses. Other common out-of-pocket client expenses can include long distance charges, photographs, expert reports and court costs.

Understand that these routine out-of-pocket litigation costs will be due regardless of the outcome of the case. Even if a client does not have to pay the attorney due to an unsuccessful result, the bill will still reflect the attorney�s time, efforts, and overhead costs.

If you are considering a personal injury action and would like to speak to an experienced Seattle injury lawyer, please call attorney Travis Eller today: 877-50-Injury.

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