How Much Does A Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?

A man sitting on the couch, resting his broken leg as he speaks on the phone with his personal injury lawyer.

Personal injury cases can be complex and emotionally challenging depending on the extent and types of personal injuries sustained. When seeking legal representation, one crucial factor is how much a personal injury lawyer costs. Understanding how much these services typically cost and the various fee structures commonly used by attorneys in this area of law can help individuals navigate their options effectively.

What different fee structures does an attorney use in Colorado?

In Colorado, personal injury lawyers typically use different fee structures to determine their charges. The most common fee arrangements include contingency fees, hourly rates, and flat fees.

  • Contingency fees: Many personal injury attorneys in Colorado work on a contingency fee basis. This means the lawyer will only charge a percentage of the eventual settlement or awarded damages if they win the case. If the attorney is unsuccessful, no legal fees are owed by the client.
  • Hourly rates: Some attorneys may charge an hourly rate for their services in personal injury cases. In this arrangement, clients pay for every hour the attorney works on their case, regardless of whether they win or lose.
  • Flat fees: While less common in personal injury cases compared to other areas of law, some attorneys may offer flat fee arrangements. This involves agreeing upon a predetermined amount upfront for specific legal services related to a personal injury claim.

It’s important to note that each attorney may have their own variations and specifics within these general fee structures, which should be discussed during initial consultations and before formalizing any contractual agreement regarding legal representation.

How much do personal injury lawyers charge for contingency fees in Colorado? 

The specific percentage charged as a contingency fee can vary among personal injury lawyers in Colorado. However, it is common for attorneys to charge between 33 percent and 40 percent of the awarded damages or settlement. For example, if your lawyer successfully resolves your personal injury case and you are awarded $100,000, they typically receive $33,000 to $40,000 as their personal injury lawyer fee.

When consulting with personal injury lawyers in Colorado regarding their fees, it’s important to discuss their specific rates, ensure all terms are documented clearly within a written agreement, and adhere to the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.5 before proceeding with legal representation.

Why do most personal injury attorneys use the contingency fee basis? 

Most Colorado personal injury attorneys use the contingency fee basis for several reasons. The primary reason is that it allows clients without the financial means to afford an attorney and access legal representation. Other key reasons why attorneys opt for this fee structure include:

  • Access to justice: Personal injury cases can require substantial financial resources and time commitment, which may deter many individuals from pursuing their claims. Contingency fees ensure people can still seek legal recourse for their injuries or losses without worrying about upfront legal fees.
  • Alignment of interests: By employing a contingency fee arrangement, attorneys align their interests with the client’s best outcome — winning the case. This helps motivate the attorney to be successful and maximize the damages awarded or settlement achieved. It also allows lawyers to work diligently in building strong cases, as their compensation is directly tied to the success they achieve.
  • Risk transfer: Contingency fees transfer much of the financial risk of litigation from the client to the attorney. Attorneys typically cover all costs related to investigating, preparing, and litigating a case without guarantee of payment unless they win. This arrangement allows injured parties access to skilled legal representation without bearing any initial out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Incentive for efficiency: Since contingency-based lawyers only earn if they succeed in obtaining compensation for their clients, it encourages efficiency and prudent decision-making throughout every step of the legal process, from negotiation strategies aimed at favorable settlements to cost-effective trial preparations

What is the success fee for personal injury cases?

The term “success fee” typically refers to an additional personal injury attorney fee percentage charged on top of their regular contingency fee if they win the case. However, it’s important to note that success fees are not common in all jurisdictions and may be regulated or prohibited in certain locations. In situations where success fees are allowed, attorneys should inform you of this additional amount upfront during the initial consultation. 

It’s worth mentioning that not all personal injury attorneys use or charge a success fee. In many cases, the standard personal injury attorney cost contingency fee already accounts for legal services rendered and successful case outcomes.

Why are Bachus & Schanker the best personal injury lawyers in Colorado?

A gavel sitting on top of an open book with the scales of justice behind it.

Bachus & Schanker is among Colorado’s best personal injury law firms. We have a strong track record of success in personal injury cases. We represent injured people and their families with compassion, support, and empathy. We know the challenges people face in injury situations and provide our clients with the help and guidance they need.
Additionally, when someone experiences catastrophic injuries or wrongful death, our clients have access to our Elite Litigation Group and Victim’s Advocates to support victims and their families during this difficult time. Our Victim’s Advocates help serve as a liaison for you and your family while allowing you to focus on recovery and healing as our attorneys work tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. 

Sources:

Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.5 – Fees. (2023).

Contingency Fee. (2022).

Goguen, D. How Long Will It Take to Settle Your Personal Injury Claim?

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