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Is it legal or am I getting ripped of ?

Fontana, CA |

Myself and 4 other people were in a car accident we were hit by a drunk driver the driver was the most injured and his case was treated separate from the passengers wouldn't We be all on the same case and not be in the situation that all of us the passenger are getting taken out 40% out of each persons settlement ? I'm need help please

Attorney Answers 7


  1. Are you talking about the attorney taking 40% for contingency fees?


  2. If you were injured and have been treating for your injuries you should consult with and retain an attorney immediately. My office handles these types of claims routinely and I have offices in West Covina and Ontario. I would be glad to see what I can do to help.

    Nothing in this communication should be construed as creating an attorney client relationship. This is for informational purposes only. Attorney will take no action on your behalf unless and until a written retainer agreement is signed. There are strict time deadlines on filing claims and, as such, you are advised to consult with and retain an attorney immediately to file such claims timely or you will lose any right to recovery. Any testimonials or endorsements should not be construed as a guarantee, warranty or prediction of the outcome of your case.


  3. If you are referring to attorney's fees, the agreed upon percentage in the Retainer agreement is per client, and not as a group, per se. So, even if an attorney represented 4 people who were involved in the same accident, each would pay a set percentage of the monies obtained by that individual as a settlement or verdict , as an attorney's fee. However, if you thought about it. As for the 40%, most jurisdictions set an attorney's contingent fee percentage at 331/3 % (one-third), at least to begin with. Speak with you lawyer as to how the 40% amount was arrived at.


  4. I'm sure you can find an attorney with a lower fee. Contact one of the lawyers in your state who answered above to discuss.


  5. Yes, each person pays an attorney fee on their settlement. It could be 40% from each of your cases if that's what you each negotiated as an attorney fee on your settlement. However, maybe you are talking about the liability insurance coverage available? Each of you would settle the case for the aggregate insurance available on a proportionate share basis. For example if the DUI driver had only 15/30K available then the 5 of you would have to split the 30K available and then look to your own UIM coverage or sue the DUI driver for more. Gets complicated so if you do not have an attorney you may want to consult with one.

    I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


  6. 40 percent is the amount typically charged if a case goes to trial. If it settles ie. no trial, the fee is usually 33.3 percent of the gross settlement. This is for each case. Some lawyers might negotiate a lower fee. It never hurts to ask.


  7. 40% of $100.00 from each of four clients is the same as 40% of $400.00... for those that keep track today is 3.14 so we can all do math today... tomorrow, I'm a math challenged lawyer again.

    One thing that is a mathematical probability is that one gets what he or she pays for... dsicounted legal services may not be what one wants when large amounts of damages are at stake.

    One thing that is as certain as two plus two is four is that no one should handle any claim (involving a motor vehicle accident with bodily injury) against any insurance company without a lawyer. Claims should be handled by a lawyer - one who will be able to understand and explain the physical damages and injuries from accident. The victim of a car accident really needs to worry about one thing - getting better. That means attending doctor's appointments, attending physical therapy (if appropriate), and taking his or her medication. All of the rest can be handled by a personal injury attorney. We earn our fees (contingent by the way) by taking on the stress and hassle of fighting for money - I dare say some of us actually enjoy the fight, but I realize that most people do not enjoy conflict.

    The above opinion goes "times four" when there are four plaintiffs involved.

    - Paul

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
    Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker
    Fransen & Molinaro, LLP
    980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206
    Corona, CA 92879
    (951)520-9684
    www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com

    "When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW."

    * This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy.
    ** Fransen & Molinaro, LLP practices in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice, and real estate law.

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D. ... Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker... Fransen & Molinaro, LLP... 980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206... Corona, CA 92879... (951)520-9684... www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com... "When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW." ... * This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy... ** Fransen & Molinaro, LLP practices in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice, and real estate law.

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