Every seven seconds, a worker gets injured on the job.
Workplace injuries aren’t uncommon, and they can put people out of work while they’re recovering. If you’ve been hurt in a work-related accident, you should always hire a lawyer to ensure you get the benefits you deserve.
But how much do workers’ compensation lawyers charge?
We’ve put together this guide to help you answer that question, so let’s get started!
How Much Do Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Charge?
Attorney fees vary depending on where you live. A person who lives in California might have to spend more to hire a workers’ compensation lawyer than someone who lives in Ohio.
Because of this, we can’t give you an exact dollar amount you’ll have to pay when you hire a lawyer. However, here’s a quick look at the most common billing methods.
Some lawyers might charge a single flat fee for their services. You can then pay this flat fee all at once or in smaller installments.
But flat fees aren’t as common as the other methods on this list.
You probably won’t find a lawyer who works for this type of compensation. Even if you do, you may not want to hire them. A flat fee doesn’t always accurately fit the type of services you’re getting.
For example, you’ll have to pay the entire flat fee whether the lawyer wins your case or not, and since you aren’t paying hourly, you don’t really know how much they’re working.
That said, this doesn’t mean you should stay away from flat fees altogether. You should, however, proceed with caution if a lawyer charges flat fees.
Hourly fees are more common than flat fees.
Instead of paying a set amount for your lawyer’s services, you’ll pay a lower fee for every hour they spend working on your case. Again, the exact amount you pay per hour will vary depending on who you hire and where you live. But paying $100 per hour (or even more) isn’t uncommon.
Your lawyer will also, most likely, ask you to pay a retainer when you start working with them.
This is an upfront fee, kind of like a deposit. After that initial payment, you’ll have to pay monthly legal bills to cover the hourly fee, which can put stress on your budget if you’re already out of work due to injury.
Most workers’ compensation lawyers work on a contingency fee. This is also, for most people, the easiest way to cover lawyer expenses.
Here’s how it works.
With a contingency fee, you’ll only have to pay your lawyer if you win your case. Your lawyer will take a certain percentage from your workers’ compensation benefits if you win. This is usually about 33%, but it can be either higher or lower.
So let’s say you win $100,000 in benefits from your case. Your lawyer will then take $33,000 of that amount.
Contingency fees mean you don’t have to pay any money upfront. It also means your lawyer will be more motivated to win your case since they only get paid if you win.
You should always look for workers’ compensation lawyers that work on a contingency fee.
Most workers’ compensation lawyers provide free consultations. This means you can sit down with them for about 30 minutes and talk about your case without worrying about payment.
Take advantage of these consultations.
Visit at least three different lawyers to ensure you get the one that fits your needs the best. Use this time to ask a lot of questions about your case.
What would their next steps be? What would they recommend? Do they think you can win your case?
You can also talk to them about how much they charge so you know what you’re getting into before you hire anyone.
Other Expenses You’ll Have to Pay During Your Lawsuit
Hiring a lawyer is only one of the expenses you’ll have to cover during your lawsuit. You’ll also have to pay for a number of other things, and you’ll have to do this out of pocket.
For example, you might have to pay for the following:
- Filing fees
- Independent medical exams
- Deposition costs
- Medical record fees
- Copying and postage
These aren’t included in the flat fee, hourly fee, or even contingency fee you pay when hiring a lawyer. Because of this, you need to keep these things in mind when coming up with a budget.
This is another reason why contingency fees can be so helpful. Since it takes the stress of paying the lawyer off your shoulders (at first, anyway), you can focus your finances on these out-of-pocket expenses.
Don’t Pick the Cheapest Lawyer You Can Find
Lawsuits and lawyers are expensive, but that doesn’t mean you should hop on Google and find the cheapest option you can get.
Remember, you get what you pay for.
If you hire a cheap lawyer, you probably won’t have strong representation in court. You may not even be able to win your case at all. It’s worth investing a bit of extra money in your lawyer to ensure you get someone with the right education, experience, and resources to win your case, such as this workers compensation attorney.
Understanding the Cost of Hiring a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
So how much do workers’ compensation lawyers usually charge?
It depends on a number of factors. However, most lawyers work on a contingency fee, meaning you won’t have to pay them until you receive your benefits. This can make hiring a lawyer much more affordable.
Want to learn some other helpful legal tips?
Make sure you take a look at the rest of our blog!