Negotiating Contingency Fee With Personal Injury: 3 Factors That Can Help You Save

Most personal injury lawyers offer a "no win, no fee" payment plan known as a contingency fee. Based on the contingency fee plan, a percentage, up to 40%, of the amount awarded will be paid to the lawyers for their time and effort if the case is won, which may be quite a huge chunk to some people. If you are dealing with a personal injury case, do not settle immediately with the percentage that is given to you by the first personal injury lawyers that you speak with. Truth is, there is generally a lot of room for negotiation although most clients are not aware of this, and are quick to agree to the numbers that their lawyers have conjured up. In fact, here are 3 factors that can help you save.

Settling the Case without Going to Trial

Did you know that 94 to 95% of all personal injury cases are typically settled, and not taken to trial? Although you may be determined to see the case through, the truth is that you may actually end up pocketing more money if you settle the case without going to trial. Why? Simple. Personal injury lawyers have to put in a lot of effort in taking a case to trial. On top of that, there are many administration and legal fees that need to be paid for the court time. It is unlikely that the case will be settled within the first court date, as the case will likely be dragged on for several months, if not years.

To save time and money, most parties that are being sued will likely attempt to the settle the case without going to trial. Your personal injury lawyer will be responsible for negotiating the terms and conditions of the settlement. By not taking the case to court, you can reduce the percentage that the lawyers claim in the contingency fees.

Providing Sufficient Evidence, or a Solid Case

If you did your due diligence in the beginning and collected all of the evidence needed to build a strong and solid case, you could negotiate the contingency fee with the personal injury lawyers, as they will be spending a significantly less amount of time finding ways to help strengthen your case. Good evidence to bring along with you when speaking with lawyers include:

  • police reports. Spend a lot of time making sure that the police reports are detailed and thorough before signing off. Do not make any remarks that are emotional and may end up hurting your case.
  • medical reports. It is best to have a medical report for when the incident happened and followup medical reports that prove that you have been performing your due diligence in recovering. Make sure that you are detailed and thorough when explaining symptoms and pain to your physician.
  • receipts for medications and medical treatments. 
  • witness testimonies. Consider the credibility of the witnesses. For example, a witness with a criminal record may not be as credible. 
  • photograph evidence. Most victims often forget to take photographs of the scene of the incident and of their injuries. 

By having a portfolio filled with solid evidence, you will be making your lawyers job a lot easier. As a result, it may be a lot easier to negotiate the percentage of the contingency fee.

Amount Likely to Be Awarded

If you know you have a large case on your hands that will likely result in a huge payout, the lawyers probably are aware of this fact as well. The likelihood of a large payout means that the lawyers will be more willing to reduce the percentage of the contingency. 

If the lawyers are not willing to lower the contingency fee immediately, you may be able to negotiate terms and conditions of the agreement. For example, based on what amount is awarded, the percentage charged in the contingency fee will be adjusted.


Dealing with a personal injury case is not easy. There are a lot of procedures that need to be followed, and your lawyer will likely need to be put in a lot of time and effort to build a strong and solid case. Regardless, you should still consider making appointments with several personal injury attorneys in order to determine the different rates that you will be charged, and whether the lawyers are willing to offer you some leniency and leeway to the charges. Consider the firm, Hardee and Hardee LLP, as one of those you contact.