How Much Will A Car Accident Lawyer Cost?
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
Most personal injury cases are handled on a contingency fee basis, which means no upfront costs for you.
Have You Been Injured In A Car Accident?
Hiring a lawyer to handle your car accident case is a major decision — and your concerns about court fees, attorney fees, or the hourly fee a lawyer charges for his or her services should not stop you from taking the step to talk to an attorney about your case.
Initial consultations are almost always without charge, and if you and an attorney decide to work together after meeting, most personal injury lawyers and law firms work on a contingency fee basis. This means that the lawyer doesn’t get paid until they win your case. Contingency fee arrangements are set by statute (MRPC Rule 1.5) and can be up to one-third of the recovery award.
Particularly if you’ve been seriously injured, an attorney can help you avoid making mistakes, and guide you through the claims process.
An attorney from Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. will be glad to meet with you at your convenience, to learn more about your case. We are personal injury and car accident attorneys helping individuals and families throughout Michigan to secure the settlement or jury award they need and deserve after a car accident.
Serious Injury And Fatality
If the car accident resulted in serious injury or death, you should definitely find an attorney to help you. Serious injuries might mean that your financial losses are significant, and exceed the limits of your Michigan No-Fault Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage.
Who will pay your medical bills and other costs in the future? What happens if you’re not able to return to the same job — or return to work at all? Are you facing permanent disability and/or disfigurement?
If a family member or friend has been killed in a car accident, how can you quantify the loss? How can you assess the lost income of that person through time, how do you quantify pain and suffering?
Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. can help you recover compensation from the at-fault driver by filing a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit.
Filing A Claim
Sometimes before a personal injury claim is even filed, the at-fault driver — or the insurance company that insures the at-fault driver — will approach you with a settlement offer. Remember that insurance companies want to settle for as little as possible, and it is extremely helpful to have a knowledgeable attorney at your side whenever you are meeting with an insurance company.
Your attorney can provide legal advice and explain what any settlement offer means, and the pros and cons of signing a release.
An attorney from Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. can assist you in any discussion or hearing with insurance company attorneys and help you make an informed decision, every step of the way. Sometimes, in complex cases, settlement discussions can happen multiple times, both before and during actual court proceedings.
Proving liability in a car accident case — whether you are in settlement hearings or presenting your case in a courtroom — is a lot more complicated than you think. Sometimes determining fault isn’t the same as determining liability. Did faulty equipment contribute to the crash? Who actually owns the vehicle that hit you?
Success in settlement hearings and in the courtroom requires a thorough knowledge of the local Michigan court system, the procedures that are specific to that county and court, and the judge(s) who may preside in your case.
Proving liability also requires that police reports, medical records, and other documentation be assembled, witnesses interviewed, and other evidence collected. It’s also very important to do this work as soon after the accident as possible.
What are the other driver’s policy limits? Does the other driver have an accident record? Previous citations? Prior arrests? A skilled attorney will know who to call, where to find answers, and what information to “discover” from the other side.
Michigan also follows a Modified Comparative Negligence Rule. That means that it is only possible to recover damages if the plaintiff’s own negligence does not exceed 51%. The jury will decide how negligent you are, too, based on the evidence that the defendant presents. This percentage, if any, will be subtracted from total damages.
For example, if you are awarded damages of $100,000 — but are seen as 30% negligent in the crash because you didn’t use your signal light — you will receive 70% of the awarded damages, or $70,000.
Don’t Wait Too Long
The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit in a car accident case is three years from the date of the accident.
If the accident resulted in a death, and the family of the deceased individual wishes to file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault driver, the statute of limitations is three years after the date of death.
Contact Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. toll-free (24 hours) at 1-866-MICH-LAW or use our convenient online contact form to schedule your no-obligation case evaluation.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.