People who get hurt in accidents and incidents beyond their control often face severe financial strain. Medical treatment for an injury can rack up huge bills. Plus, many victims of preventable accidents miss time at work while recuperating, which limits their income.
The last thing anyone struggling through the aftermath of an unexpected injury thinks they can afford is an expensive attorney. However, here is some good news: even if you have no money at all, you can afford a top-notch lawyer to help you seek compensation after an accident that leaves you in dire financial straits. Let’s take a look at how that’s possible.
A personal injury attorney represents people who have suffered unexpected, preventable injuries through no fault of their own. The attorney’s job is to recover money for those injured people from the individuals or entities whose bad decisions or actions caused the harm.
Virtually all personal injury attorneys offer free consultations. Why? Because personal injury attorneys want to make it easy for injured people to reach out to find out about their legal rights. By offering free consultations, a personal injury attorney ensures that injured people have nothing to lose in connecting with a lawyer who might be able to help them.
A free consultation serves as a “get to know you,” of sorts. During such consultations, injured individuals tell the personal injury lawyer about how they got hurt and who they think may bear the blame. The lawyer asks questions that help him or her figure out if the injured person has a potential legal claim for money damages. Both of them get to size each other up and decide whether they would make for a good fit as attorney and client.
After a free consultation, the lawyer will usually give the injured person a preliminary assessment of whether he or she has a potential legal claim for damages. The lawyer cannot make promises or guarantees, of course. This is just a first meeting, after all. However, the lawyer will usually try to give the injured individual enough information to allow him or her to decide whether to hire the lawyer to handle the case. And again, all of this happens with no up-front payment required.
If an injured person decides to hire a personal injury lawyer after the free consultation, the lawyer will virtually always represent the client on contingency. This means that the personal injury lawyer does not ask the client to pay any money up-front for the lawyer’s services. Instead, the client agrees to pay the lawyer a percentage of any money that the lawyer winds up recovering for the client. The lawyer’s fee is contingent on the lawyer getting the client paid.
In other words, even if you have no money to your name, you can still hire an experienced, skilled personal injury lawyer to represent you, and the lawyer will get to work advocating for your interests without you paying a dime upfront. If the lawyer cannot recover compensation, then the lawyer does not get paid, either. On the flip side, the more money the lawyer obtains for you, the more money the lawyer earns.
These days, lawyers and clients will often agree on a sliding scale of percentages based on the amount of money at stake and/or the amount of time or work it takes for the lawyer to recover money on the client’s behalf.
Whatever the arrangement, the lawyer and client always agree on the percentage upfront, in clear and simple terms, so that the client has a clear understanding of how the lawyer will receive a fee.
Why do personal injury lawyers work on contingency? There are two basic reasons. First, working for a contingent fee gives the injured client access to high-quality legal services. Without contingent fee arrangements, many people who desperately need legal help to recover compensation for an injury would never get justice for the harm done to them.
Second, working on contingency lines up the lawyer’s interests with the client’s. Both want the same thing: for the lawyer to obtain the most money possible to pay for the client’s injuries and losses, and for the lawyer to accomplish that goal as quickly and efficiently as possible. By working on contingency, in other words, a personal injury lawyer “invests” in a client receiving fair compensation for an injury.
Many personal injury lawyers will even pay for the running expenses of a lawsuit out of their own pockets, so clients do not have to spend a single penny in seeking justice and compensation for injuries and losses.
The fact is that anyone who suffers an injury because of someone else’s careless, reckless, or intentionally harmful actions should still seek out a personal injury attorney, because the cost is effectively zero unless and until the lawyer recovers money, and even then, the lawyer only gets paid out of the money recovered.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in an accident caused by someone else’s poor decisions or dangerous actions, then no matter how little money you have, you can retain a lawyer to represent you in seeking compensation for your injuries. Personal injury attorneys commit their careers to the basic principle that no one should ever go without legal representation in a personal injury case because of financial strain. A personal injury lawyer will not turn you away just because you have no money.
To learn about your legal rights after suffering an injury, contact an experienced personal injury attorney today for a free consultation to discuss your eligibility to file a claim.
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Seattle, WA 98121