What is a Contingent Fee?
In each case to intitiate representation, we and you will sign a fee agreement that outlines the structure of the fees and the costs.
Our fees are on a contingent basis. A contingent fee agreement means that unless we make a monetary recovery for you, you do not need to pay us. Thus, the fee is contingent, or dependent upon, the fact that there is a monetary recovery. And the fee is only if there is a monetary recovery in the vast majority of cases. If we do make a monetary recovery, you pay us a certain percentage of the total amount of the recovery at the end of the case out of the settlement.
How Much are the Contingency Fees?
The fees can range depending on the type of case and the State.
Workers’ Compensation: Our fees range from the client paying between 8%- 20% in workers’ compensation cases in New Jersey, and 20% in Pennsylvania cases. The client never pays more than 20% in New Jersey or Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation cases.
Injury Cases (motor vehicle accidents, wrongful death, slip and fall): These fees range depending on a variety of factors. In many cases in New Jersey by law there is a sliding scale of fees. In many cases the fee is 33.3%. However, fees can from 25% or more for minors in Pennsylvania, to 50% in the more complex and difficult Pennsylvania injury cases.
In some cases the Court will decide the attorneys fees. In Pennsylvania, there is no sliding scale, and there are no restrictions by law on an actual percentage. The fees must be reasonable in Pennsylvania. Our firm practices law actively in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Joseph Urban of our office handles our Pennsylvania practice as well as some of our New Jersey practice. Michael Sussen practices mainly in New Jersey. Michael Dennin handles our workers’ compensation department. Mr. Dennin also handles cases in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
For minors (those 18 years or younger), the fees are often limited to 25%.
Do I pay if I lose the case?
First, we are not in the business of losing cases! That said, in the end of the case if it goes to trial and the jury decides against us, or if we cannot continue the case due various issues including the verbal threshold, we do require you to pay anything. If the law firm does not recover money compensation for a client, then the client does not need to pay them for the time and work they put in on the case. In many verbal threshold cases, we do a lot of work and then there may end up not being a case if the injury is not permanent. In some cases, depending on the negotiation and offers on a case, if we recommend a certain settlement and the client does not want to accept it, and rather try the case, we may look to the client to pay the costs of trial. Trial costs often range from $10,000 to $500,000.00 due to paying for various experts and trial litigation technology and efforts. In some cases you can do an expedited trial, which reduces costs but will cap the amount you can receive by the jury if a jury awards you compensation.
Is there a Retainer Required? Can I Pay Hourly Fees?
There is NO retainer, or prepayment required in our contingent fee cases. We have a hourly fee structure. Although practically all of our agreements are on a contingent basis, we do offer hourly agreements. Vince’s hourly rate is $500.00 per hour. Mr. Sussen and Mr. Urban’s is $400.00 per hour. Mr. Dennin’s is $350.00 per hour.