What Is A “Contingency Fee”?

Contingency Fee

Many people hesitate to hire an attorney because they are concerned about how much it will cost them to be represented. While it is true that litigation can be expensive, contingency fee cases solve much of that problem.

Here’s how it works.

Contingency Fee Agreements.

A contingency fee agreement is a contract that you sign when you hire counsel to represent you. While most attorney-client contracts charge an hourly rate for an attorney’s time, with a contingency fee agreement, you do not have to pay any money upfront.

Your attorney gets paid “contingent upon” (only if) you win at trial or reach a settlement with the other party. If that happens, then your attorney will get a percentage (usually around 1/3 or 33%) of the award or settlement amount.

But this percentage amount is not set in stone. The percentage charged to handle a case varies depending on how difficult, risky, or complex your case is.


Because the attorney is paying everything upfront and is taking all the risk. If you do not win your case, he gets paid nothing for his time and work.

Costs of Litigation.

When you file a lawsuit —even if you do so without an attorney—there are costs associated with the lawsuit.

The percentage amount that an attorney agrees to in a contingency fee agreement pays the attorney for his time and talent. While the attorney will also advance the costs of litigation in a contingency fee arrangement, ultimately the costs of litigation are something that you will have to pay for.

Litigation costs are things like:

  • Court filing fees
  • Costs of discovery (travel, court reporters, transcript costs, taking depositions, subpoenas, etc.)
  • Expert Witness Costs
  • Costs for obtaining documents from doctors, the courts or third parties
  • Copying and postage costs.

The list above is not all-inclusive, but it should give you an idea of what costs are involved in litigation.

Bringing a lawsuit is never something that should be undertaken lightly. Litigating can be an emotionally-draining and expensive process. But when you have been injured through no fault of your own and are struggling under the burden of your injuries and unexpected expenses, sometimes you need to sue. When you do, it is good to know that there is a way that you can seek justice and just compensation even if you cannot pay for representation up-front.

We Have Helped Others, We Can Help You.

If you have been injured by the fault of someone else, call us. At the Day Law Group, our passion is helping people who have been wrongfully injured. We offer FREE consultations, and we don’t get paid unless you win your case. We have offices in Baton Rouge and we serve all of Southern Louisiana. Call (225) 465-1232 ToDay to schedule your free consultation or contact us here.

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