What Does "Contingency Fee" Mean?

You've most likely heard these slogans more times than you can remember...

"No Fee, No Recovery!"

"You Pay Nothing Unless We WIN"

"WE don't get paid unless YOU get paid!"

These slogans go hand-in-hand with the term "contingency fee," which is how most injury attorneys get paid.

A contingency fee means the lawyer: 

  1. Doesn't require payment upfront
  2. Will only collect a fee if you win your case. The fee collected is usually a percentage of the settlement, typically 33%, although some firms may charge up to 40%.

So if you are trying to get benefits from the car insurance company responsible for your medical payments and you hire a lawyer, you are allowing them to collect part of the settlement only if your case is successful. This arrangement works well for lawyers and claimants in particular practice areas.

Why Contingency Fees Exist

If a person is injured in an accident and having trouble paying their medical bills, chances are they won't have the funds to pay for a lawyer upfront.

By allowing people to pay for legal services from their settlement proceeds, contingency fees allow more people to hire attorneys for help during their claims. This same principle goes for workers' compensation or disability claims. Injured individuals may desperately need benefits, and the legal help that may be often necessary for a financial recovery is an important part of the process. Some cases are handled on a contingency basis because of industry standard and statute.

Common Contingency Fee Cases

Personal Injury: If your claim stems from a car accident, slip and fall, or premises liability, the attorney's fees will most likely come from the settlement that you accept from the insurance company.

Worker's Compensation: For workers' compensation claims, the Judge of Compensation Claims has to approve the fees that the injured worker's lawyer requests from the settlement proceeds. Workers' compensation cases are usually taken on a contingency basis because the statute states that fee structure is based on a percentage of the claimant's benefits received.

Social Security Disability: A lot of denied disability claims involve the Social Security Administration, so there is a federal law governing how much a claimant's representative can collect for their services. The SSA needs to approve the fee agreement set forth between the claimant and the representative, which is typically no more than 25% of past due benefits up to $6,000. Because the fee is percentage-based, the representative or lawyer accepts the case knowing that their fee is based on the claimant's successful claim for past-due benefits.

If you have questions about claims that are taken on a contingency basis, call the Coye Law Firm's office today at 407-648-4940. We can discuss your claim with you and determine the process of collecting fees. We want to help you pay for essential treatment if you are injured.

Call 407.648.4940 or contact Coye Law Firm today for a free consultation about your case.

The expert injury attorneys at Coye Law Firm are experienced with Florida, New York, Michigan, and District of Columbia law and are here to help the injured.

If you'd like to learn more about injury law and your rights, read my book, Sharing the Secrets, Learning the Lies: A Guide to Florida Personal Injury

From this book you will learn… 

  1. The ONE THING you must do within 14 days of your accident (page 46)
  2. The two most important factors in determining case value (page 8)
  3. How to understand what your insurance will and will not cover (chapter 3)
  4. 6 critical steps you must take after an accident (chapter 7)
  5. Why you should not trust the insurance company’s repair shop (page 78)
  6. How to choose the right doctor (chapter 5)
  7. A claim you could make against your own insurance company if your car is damaged, but not totaled (page 87)
  8. The secrets to getting a fair settlement (chapter 10)
  9. An 8-step breakdown of the normal process for lawsuits (page 121)
  10. The one 4-letter word that might cost you (chapter 12)
  11. How to start gathering the most important evidence you need (page 75)
  12. …and more!

Click here to receive your FREE copy now.