Once all parties agree to a settlement, funds are distributed to all of the parties who are owed. Several parties may have a claim to a portion of the settlement, including the following:
We collect one-third of any settlement as compensation for our work. If a case goes into litigation, we collect 40 percent. Most cases do not go into litigation. This is an industry-standard percentage, and we disclose it before you hire us.
Keep in mind that by hiring us, you substantially improve your options for recovering money from the parties in your case. Insurance companies prey on consumers who do not seek legal advice and offer far less than their cases are actually worth. On the other hand, insurers know us, respect our skills, and fear litigation, enabling us to negotiate a far better settlement on your behalf.
In addition to our fees, there may be costs associated with prosecuting your case. For instance, in an auto accident case, we may hire an appraiser to assess damage to your vehicle. We also charge a flat cost for incidental expenses like photocopies and postage.
Any outstanding medical bills will be paid from the settlement funds. If you paid for care out of pocket, those payments will be reflected in the settlement and your portion of the settlement will be greater.
If your health insurance company paid for your medical bills, they will be compensated for those costs out of the settlement. One of the benefits of hiring an attorney is that there is a discount to this reimbursement to account for our legal fees. The end result is more money in your pocket.
After all of those other parties are paid, the remaining balance will go to you, in the form of a settlement check.
The settlement typically recognizes the financial losses you have suffered and is meant to compensate you for those losses. Additional funds may be part of the settlement for your pain and suffering but will depend on negligent behavior on the part of the defendant, emotional and psychological harm, required ongoing medical care, and other factors.