Whenever a client contacts a Las Vegas personal injury attorney at our law firm, one of the first questions they ask is: “how much does it cost to hire you?” The standard answer we offer is that we work on a contingency fee basis. This means that we get paid only after we win your case. The contingency fee principle means that the lawyer will retain a percentage of the settlement amount or jury award they’ve won for the client.
However, this simple explanation is not enough. For this reason, we will detail the answer in this article. First of all, let us explain what a personal injury attorney will do for you in order to win your case.
Why You Should Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
When your car is damaged, you take it to a mechanic, and not start tinkering with it. When you are sick, you go to the doctor instead of trying to treat yourself. By the same logic, whenever you have a legal case, you should hire a lawyer.
Why? First of all, you do not know the specific clauses and rules applicable in your favor and which will win your case. Secondly, even if you manage to locate the respective legal texts and read them, you do not have the experience to negotiate with insurance adjusters. They have years, even decades of experience in dealing with various personal injury victims and thwarting their attempts to obtain fair compensation for their economic and non-economic damages.
An Experienced Lawyer Will Reduce the Duration of the Procedures
A Las Vegas personal injury attorney knows how long to negotiate with an insurance company and when they should instruct you to file a personal injury lawsuit. Here are the two main reasons for this:
- The lawyer will not want you to exceed the statute of limitations of 2 years
- The longer the procedure lasts, the more expenses you accumulate.
Although the Nevada personal injury law allows plaintiffs to recover their legal costs, including the lawyer’s fee, these must be reasonable amounts. Nevada Revised Statutes 18.010 states that court procedures must not “hinder the timely resolution of meritorious claims and increase the costs of engaging in business and providing professional services to the public.”
A Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney Will Maximize Your Settlement Amount
Attorneys know how much money their clients should recover in any type of personal injury case: car accident, premises liability (slip and fall accidents), medical malpractice, or workplace accident. They will add up all the eligible expenses and losses you’ve incurred and put a fair value on your non-economic damages (for pain and suffering).
After years of experience, they know how much they can negotiate on behalf of clients, as well as the value of damages juries usually award at the end of a personal injury case. Setting out with clear and reasonable expectations will maximize the actual amount of money you will recover.
How Contingency Fees Are Calculated
Now, let us focus on the aspect you want to know: how much a personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas, Nevada gets paid. If their fees are collected out of your settlement amount, doesn’t it mean that you will actually not recover enough money to pay all your hospital bills and medical care expenses?
The fact is that legal representation fees are economic losses you are allowed to recover. Thus, the Las Vegas personal injury attorney will add their fees to the amount of money representing your economic damages.
As for the actual value of these fees, they usually represent one third of the total amount won on behalf of the client. There is an exception – for medical malpractice cases, the attorney’s contingency fee is limited by Nevada Revised Statutes 7.095 to:
- 40% of the first $50,000
- 33.3% of the next $50,000
- 25% of the next $500,000
- 15% of recovery amounts exceeding $600,000.
The Attorney Will Offer You a Clear Breakdown of Costs
Legal costs represent more than just a Las Vegas personal injury attorney’s fee. In many cases, the lawyer will have to investigate your case, pursue evidence and talk to eyewitnesses or expert witnesses. All these involve costs, including:
- For travel
- For long-distance phone calls
- For consultations with other professionals
- For hiring experts (such as accident reconstruction specialists).
However, all these are recoverable costs. Nevada Revised Statutes 18.005 specifies all the costs that a plaintiff can recover from the defendant at the end of a personal injury lawsuit. There are 16 categories of legal costs included in the list, out of which we mention:
- Fees for witnesses at a trial
- Reasonable fees for not more than five expert witnesses up to the total amount of $1,500 per witness
- Reasonable costs for telecopies, photocopies, and long-distance telephone calls
- Reasonable costs for travel and accommodation for the purpose of taking depositions.
The Attorney Will Take Into Account the Provisions of Comparative Negligence
As the personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas, Nevada will explain to you, being partly at fault for your accident will reduce the total compensatory amount you may collect. However, as the lawyer’s fees are calculated as a percentage of the actual amount they manage to recover on your behalf, you will still receive a fair amount of money to rebalance your finances after the personal injury accident.
Not Hiring an Attorney Will Cost You More
As you have read above, preparing for a personal injury case (either in court or in negotiations with the insurance company) involves a lot of work, travel, and some expenses. A lawyer knows exactly where to go to find useful information for your case and how to access relevant pieces of evidence. You will lose a lot of time and money trying and failing to locate the witnesses (including expert witnesses) and the evidence you need to prove your case.
Even if you put together a good case, some of your expenses may not be eligible for recovery, because they may be deemed to exceed reasonable values.
Let an Experienced Las Vegas Personal Injury Law Firm Handle Your Case
At Christian Morris Trial Attorneys, your case will be analyzed and handled by a personal injury lawyer with decades of experience. Our attorneys have over 30 years of experience working for insurance companies. This gives them the valuable inside knowledge needed to negotiate and win the maximum compensation you are entitled to receive for your economic and non-economic damages.
Let us do the work and help you recover your damages. Schedule a free case review with a personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas, Nevada by calling 702-410-6329!