Should I pay money to my personal injury lawyer if I have an accident in New York? No. Your personal injury lawyer should never ask you for money!
“I just had an accident and called a lawyer. I signed some papers, and now my personal injury lawyer is asking me for money. Do I need to pay money?”
He went to see an accident lawyer, but the lawyer wanted money upfront for medical records and a medical report. This isn’t the first time someone told us that an accident lawyer wanted money upfront!
The injury lawyer also told him he would have to stay out of work for three months! He was lucky that a friend told him to call us.
We told him that we would never charge him any money upfront, not unless we settled his case, and it would be paid out of his settlement money. We also told him that we did not care if he went back to work. He went back to work, and we settled his case for the entire insurance policy.
I got my first car accident case when my client’s prior lawyer switched to me because the lawyer wanted him to pay $1,500 for a medical report from his orthopedic surgeon. The client switched to me, and I settled the case for enough money that my client was able to buy a house, and the legal fee paid a substantial deposit for my new house.
When Should My Lawyer Charge Me for Case Expenses?
We will never ask you to pay money for anything, either upfront or during your case. We will deduct the expenses for your accident case at the end of your case from your settlement money.
New York Personal Injury lawyers are required, as of April 1, 2014, by the Appellate Divisions of the New York State Supreme Court to include two options in the retainer regarding your payment of case expenses.
One option requires the personal injury lawyer to pay in advance and be responsible for all case expenses in the event the case is lost.
The other option allows you to pay the case expenses in advance. If you choose to pay the case expenses in advance, you will lose your money in the event your case is lost, or your lawyer no longer wants to represent you for your accident, and you cannot find another lawyer.
Why would you want to advance the expenses for your accident case? Because if you choose to pay the case expenses in advance, your legal fee will be lowered by 1/3 of the amount of your expenses.
Example of the two options, if your case settles for $100,000 and expenses are $1,000
If your lawyer pays the case expenses in advance:
$100,000.00 Total settlement
-$33,333.33 33 1/3 legal fee
-$1,000.00 Expenses (paid back at end of the case)
$65,666.67 Amount to you (no income tax on money for pain and suffering)
If you pay the case expenses in advance:
$100,000.00 Total settlement
-$1,000.00 Expenses paid back at end of the case
-$33,000.00 1/3 legal fee
$66,000.00 Amount to you (no income tax on money for pain and suffering)
We have not had any clients who wanted to advance case expenses, and we prefer to advance the case expenses because it makes it much easier for us.
Why Would My Accident Lawyer Ask Me for Money?
If your accident lawyer is asking for any money upfront or during the case, it either means:
- The lawyer doesn’t have confidence in your case or
- The lawyer has money problems.
Why Shouldn’t I pay Money to My Accident Lawyer?
- If your personal injury lawyer doesn’t have confidence in your case, you could lose your money if you pay upfront.
- If your personal injury attorney is asking you for money now, it’s highly likely that your attorney will ask you for money later again during your case! What will you do when you’re lawyer calls you 8 months from now and asks you to pay $1,500 for a doctor’s report?
If you are injured in an accident, your personal injury lawyer should never ask you for any money!
We charge a 1/3 legal fee which is also paid at the end of your case and only if we are successful.
See our SIMPLE FEE GUARANTEE™ and detailed but easy-to-read article about how much it costs to hire a personal injury attorney and the difference between other accident attorneys and us.
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What will happen when I call 1-800-HURT-911 or chat?
- Our call center operators and chat operators are available 24/7.
- Just give your contact info to our operator and Founding Partner Rob Plevy, Esq. will call you within 5-10 minutes for your free, no-obligation consultation during the hours of 8 am – 10 pm. After hours, Rob will call you in the morning or at the time you want.
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Because any delay could cause you to lose viable rights and benefits, please call HURT-911® Founding Partner Rob Plevy, Esq. right now for a free consultation to find out your rights days/nights/weekends.
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Watch Founding Partner Phil Franckel, Esq. talk about New York Serious Injury Attorneys.com, difficult cases, and the 1-800-HURT-911® Dream Team™
Philip L. Franckel, Esq. is one of the HURT911® Dream Team™ Founding Partners at 1-800-HURT-911® New York; He has a 10 Avvo rating; Avvo Client’s Choice with all 5-star reviews; Avvo Top Contributor; and a former Member of the Board of Directors of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association.
Robert Plevy, Esq. is one of the HURT911® Dream Team™ Founding Partners at 1-800-HURT-911® New York. Rob began his legal career in 1993 as an Assistant Corporation Counsel defending The City of New York against personal injury lawsuits.