A one-third contingency fee is the most common arrangement, but is not always collected ex post, when recoveries are low, firms often reduce their fee. The estimated effect of caps on contingency fees varies, depending on cap design and the mix of cases a firm handles. But many fee caps dramatically affect the economics of plaintiff side personal injury practice.
The insurance company is usually given 30 days to review the information in the demand package. Once the demand package is reviewed, the insurance adjuster will make an offer in response to the demand. Sometimes the offer will be the entire policy limits of the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. The amount of the offer depends on the facts of the accident and the nature and extent of the client’s injuries. Once an offer is received by the insurance company the negotiation process begins. The attorney will consult with the client to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the case and the best way to proceed. The final decision of whether to settle the case is always the clients decision. The attorney will make recommendations based on clients experience but the decision is the client’s.
A Survivor’s damages can include the following:
Loss of support and services
Loss of the decedent’s companionship
Mental pain and suffering
Lost parental companionship, instruction and guidance
Medical and funeral expenses that may have been paid by the survivor
Attorneys fees and costs are lower
Money is obtained immediately
The client can avoid the stress of a prolonged lawsuit
The client is in charge of the settlement not six strangers in a jury box
Once we have completed our liability and damage investigation and the client has reached a point of maximum medical improvement, we will submit a demand package to the insurance company. The demand package is a compilation of our liability and damage determination. It consists of a letter from the attorney setting out the client’s position regarding liability and damages. A number of insurance companies use claims management software to arrive at a value for the claim.
This is a confidential settlement conference between the parties and a non-interested third party who tries to help negotiate a resolution to the case. All trial judges will refer the case to mediation. This is usually the last chance to settle a case before trial. Things that are discussed during mediation are confidential and cannot be used at trial. If a settlement is reached at mediation, the insurance company will issue a check within 20 days.