Unpacking the Value Behind Investing in a Car Accident Lawyer’s Services
When you’re faced with the aftermath of a car accident in Philadelphia, seeking compensation for your damages can seem overwhelming. With the economic strain that car accidents can bring, you may be asking ‘how much does a car accident lawyer cost?’ At van der Veen, Hartshorn and Levin, we understand the economic pressure that many car accident victims face. This is why we want you to understand the value that a seasoned attorney can bring to a car accident case.
Understanding the Fee Structure: How Car Accident Lawyers Charge
Car accident lawyers typically use one of several fee structures to bill their clients for their services. These fee structures can vary depending on the lawyer and the specific circumstances of your case. Here are some common fee structures used by car accident lawyers:
This is the most common fee structure for car accident cases. The attorney doesn't charge any upfront fees. Instead, they agree to take a percentage (usually around 33-40%) of the final settlement or court award. If you don't win your case, you generally won't owe any legal fees. However, you may still be responsible for other expenses, like court costs.
Some car accident lawyers charge an hourly rate for their services. You will be billed for the time the attorney spends working on your case, which includes research, meetings, and court appearances. Hourly fees can add up quickly and may not be the best option for smaller cases.
In some cases, a lawyer may offer a flat fee for specific services, such as drafting legal documents or providing legal advice. This fee structure is less common for car accident cases but may be used for certain tasks.
A retainer fee is an upfront payment that you make to secure the lawyer's services. The lawyer then deducts their fees as they work on your case, and you may be required to replenish the retainer as it is depleted.
Some lawyers combine different fee structures for specific aspects of your case. For instance, they may charge an hourly rate for pre-trial preparation but switch to a contingency fee for any settlement or court award.
In rare cases, lawyers may take on car accident cases pro bono, meaning they provide their services for free. This is typically for clients who cannot afford legal representation.
It's essential to discuss fees and payment structures with potential car accident lawyers during your initial consultation. Make sure to get a clear understanding of how fees will be calculated, what expenses you may be responsible for, and any potential additional costs related to your case. This way, you can choose a fee structure that aligns with your specific needs and financial situation. Additionally, it's a good idea to have the fee agreement in writing to avoid misunderstandings later on.
At van der Veen, Hartshorn and Levin, we’re committed to being completely transparent with our fees and fee structure with our clients. We work on a contingency fee basis and offer competitive rates for our services. Schedule a free consultation to discuss the details of your case with an attorney from our law firm and learn about our rates and how we can help.
Injured in a Car Accident?
Variables that May Affect the Cost of Hiring a Car Accident Attorney
- Fee Structure: The attorney's chosen fee structure will have a significant impact on the cost. Common fee structures include contingency fees, hourly rates, flat fees, retainer fees, or hybrid fee arrangements.
- Attorney's Experience: More experienced attorneys often charge higher fees due to their expertise. However, they may also be more efficient at handling cases, potentially reducing the overall cost.
- Case Complexity: The complexity of your car accident case can impact the cost. Complicated cases involving multiple parties, severe injuries, or disputed liability may require more time and resources, thus increasing legal fees.
- Geographic Location: Legal fees can vary depending on the location of the attorney's office. Attorneys in major cities may charge higher rates than those in smaller towns or rural areas.
- Case Preparation: The level of investigation and preparation required for your case can affect the cost. If extensive research, expert witnesses, or accident reconstruction is needed, it can increase the attorney's fees.
- Time and Effort: The time and effort required to negotiate with insurance companies, file paperwork, or represent you in court will affect the overall cost.
- Disbursements and Expenses: In addition to legal fees, you may be responsible for reimbursing the attorney for expenses related to your case, such as court filing fees, expert witness fees, medical records retrieval, and travel expenses.
- Settlement vs. Trial: Cases that go to trial often require more time and resources than those settled out of court, potentially increasing the cost. The attorney's trial experience may also play a role.
- Attorney's Reputation: Lawyers with strong reputations for achieving successful outcomes may charge higher fees. Clients often seek out experienced attorneys with a track record of winning cases.
- Contingency Fee Percentage: If your attorney works on a contingency fee basis, the percentage they take from your settlement or court award can impact the cost. Common contingency fees range from 33% to 40%.
It's crucial to discuss fees and cost estimates with potential car accident attorneys during your initial consultation. They should provide you with a clear fee structure, including any anticipated expenses, and explain how they will bill you. Make sure to get this information in writing and ask any questions you have about the cost of their services. This will help you make an informed decision when hiring an attorney.
- Unmatched Support: Navigating the Fallout of a Car Accident
"I was involved in a car accident while 13 weeks pregnant. I didn’t know where to turn until a friend gave me a number and said “Hey, check out this lawyer”. I did just that, and even though the process was long, which I expected, it was the best decision I've made in a long time. In the end, we won! I have to thank Mr. Hartshorn and his team for everything they have done for not only me but my family as well. I could not have picked a better lawyer! Thank you all so very much! On a scale of 1 to 10, you guys are a 100!"- Deasia C. / Client★★★★★
- Seamless Experience: Legal Excellence Meets Compassionate Care
"Wonderful experience with this law firm after getting hit last summer. The whole staff is on top of things and communicates well. A special shoutout to the attorney who handled my case and negotiated my medical bills. I was able to get the care and treatment I needed with minimal stress because they handled it all!"- Amanda A. / Client★★★★★
- Effortless Recovery: Comprehensive Care and Exceptional Communication
"Going with this law firm for my auto accident case was the best advice anyone ever gave me. I was very impressed with my results and the way they handled my case and me."- Ant F. / Client★★★★★
- Prompt and Precise: An Automobile Settlement that Stands Out
“I wanted to thank you for the excellent work you did as my attorney with the settlement of my automobile accident. I know you have a lot of clients, so your prompt responses and attention to detail really meant a lot to me.”- Jarrett H. / Client★★★★★
Why Paying an Experienced Car Accident Attorney is Worth It
Are you wondering whether paying an experienced attorney from a firm like van der Veen, Hartshorn and Levin is worth it? There are many reasons why hiring an attorney after a car accident is worth it.
- Legal Expertise: Experienced car accident lawyers have a deep understanding of personal injury law and the legal process. They can navigate the complexities of the legal system, statutes of limitations, and relevant laws to build a strong case on your behalf.
- Maximizing Compensation: A seasoned attorney can help you identify all potential sources of compensation, including insurance policies, responsible parties, and liable entities. They work to maximize your compensation, ensuring you are not left with inadequate funds to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses.
- Negotiation Skills: Skilled car accident attorneys are adept negotiators. They can engage in productive discussions with insurance companies and other parties involved, often securing higher settlements for their clients.
- Investigative Resources: Experienced lawyers often have access to a network of professionals, such as accident reconstruction experts and medical specialists, who can help build a compelling case. They can gather evidence to prove liability and establish the extent of your injuries.
- Handling Insurance Companies: Dealing with insurance companies can be challenging, as they may attempt to minimize payouts or deny claims. An attorney can handle all communication with insurers and advocate for your rights.
- Reducing Stress: Going through a car accident case can be emotionally and physically draining. Having a lawyer on your side can alleviate stress by managing the legal aspects of your case, allowing you to focus on recovery.
- Fair Compensation for Pain and Suffering: Experienced lawyers can help you seek compensation for intangible losses, such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and a reduced quality of life, which are often challenging to quantify but essential to your recovery.
- $35.1 MillionPersonal Injury
- $10 MillionPersonal Injury
- $4.8 MillionPersonal Injury
- $4.25 MillionPersonal Injury
- $3.25 MillionPersonal Injury
What To Do Next
If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Philadelphia and are wondering ‘how much does a car accident lawyer cost?’ get in touch with van der Veen, Hartshorn and Levin and schedule a free consultation. We’d be glad to discuss our fee structure and the value we offer.