Personal injury lawyers in Vancouver practice civil litigation. You hire a personal injury lawyer when you need help with a case involving an injury related to an accident or medical malpractice. You can even hire a personal injury lawyer for a wrongful death lawsuit. A personal injury lawyer will be your advocate both in and out of the courtroom. All communications with the defendant in your personal injury case should go through your personal injury attorney. This article will give you a brief look at what you need to know when dealing with a personal injury case.
When it comes to personal injury lawsuits in the Vancouver area, most personal injury lawyers in Vancouver will use billing structures known as contingency fees. The benefit of using such a payment structure is that you don’t have to pay the lawyer if the case is lost. There is no upfront liability on your part. If you think you have a personal injury lawsuit and have been putting it off because you fear the costs of hiring an attorney, you now know those fears shouldn’t stop you from seeking legal counsel. A contingency fee is setup so that the lawyer is paid a percentage of the money collected at trial or from a settlement.
It’s important to remember that some personal injury lawyers in Vancouver are more flexible than others when it comes to negotiating contingency fees. In most cases, the fee will be either 33 percent or 40 percent of the collected money. Usually, if a case has to go to trial, the fee will be set at 40 percent. There are some lawyers who will take a 40 percent fee even if the case is settled before a trial. You can negotiate the fee to be taken off the net money collected. The net is the amount of money left over after expenses have been calculated. You will end up with more money if the fee is calculated based on the net instead of the gross. Negotiating an overall lower percentage is also a possibility. There’s nothing wrong with shopping your personal injury case around and taking the best offer.
Don’t sign anything with any of the personal injury lawyers in Vancouver until you know the terms of your agreement. Once you sign the papers, you are bound by your agreement. You will not be able to negotiate more favorable terms for your case. Since consultations with personal injury lawyers are almost always free, don’t be in a rush to sign an agreement. Get as many consultations as you have time for.
Chances are that your personal injury case will never make it all the way to the trial phase. Your case may be settled long before a trial date is set. It’s important to note that you don’t have to take a settlement offer if you find the terms unfavorable. Even if your lawyer is insisting you take the offer, you could refuse. You have the final say. There are times when the first settlement offer will be very low. It’s not uncommon for a defendant to throw an offer out there to see how desperate a plaintiff is for the money. Medical bills might be mounting up. Other bills might be past due. A plaintiff may not want to wait the time it takes for a civil case to get resolved. At the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for you. If a low settlement offer allows you to keep your home, you might be better off taking the sure thing instead of waiting and potentially losing your home.
Each personal injury case is different. Some are stronger cases and easier to prove when compared to others. If you think you have a case, seek out a qualified attorney immediately.