Payment from Insurance Company after settlement of PI lawsuit

Asked over 1 year ago - San Jose, CA

Is it normal for the Insurance company to release the payment cheque on the name of my attorney's firm? What if he doesn't pay me after it is deposited into his account or demands more fees?

Attorney answers (7)

  1. David B Pittman

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    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . Yes this is customary. The check should have your name and your lawyer or the law firm name as payees on the check. The lawyer deposits the check in their trust account and money is disbursed from there. The lawyer would face possible disbarment or serious trouble with the bar if they stole your money.

  2. Manuel Alzamora Juarez

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    Answered . Yes, it is customary. Do not fear not getting paid. Most lawyers are very ethical and want to do right by their clients.Unless you know that your attorney is not afraid of the California Bar.

    This answer is provided by California Accident Attorney Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., 510-206-4492. Abogado de... more
  3. Randy William Ferguson

    Contributor Level 19

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    Answered . Usually both names are on the check. The attorney will not keep your check. If they do, they will lose their license.

    The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The... more
  4. Myers Newton Massengill II

    Contributor Level 3

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    Answered . Yes, this is the general practice of most insurance companies. Once the check has cleared the attorney's escrow account he will release your portion of the settlement. If he does not, you can report him to the Board of Professional Responsibility.

  5. Christian K. Lassen II

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    Answered . Yes, it is standard, although sometimes insurance companies cut checks that should go to the attorney directly to the client, which is a bad thing.

  6. Benjamin Prescott Tryk

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    Contributor Level 8

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    Answered . It is the normal process. Its the only way to assure that your attorney's firm gets paid. If they lag or there is a discrepancy in payment, go to www.calbar.org and read up on the issue.

  7. Stacy E Pepper

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    Contributor Level 13

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    Answered . I agree with the answers above. The money will be deposited into the attorney or law firm's Trust/Escrow/IOLTA account, because a portion of the money is yours. Once the check clears, then the attorney will cut you a check for you share per the terms of the attorney fee agreement. Some attorneys will have the insurance company issue the check in yours and your attorneys firm's name both, which requires you to come in and sign the check for deposit. However, firms such as mine that handle cases state wide, often include a power of attorney clause in the attorney fee contract allowing us to sign for you so we can deposit the check into our trust account and save clients from having to make two trips (one to sign and deposit, and another to come pick up the disbursement check) because it is often the next day before we know if the check clears unless it is drawn on the same bank that we have our trust account with.

    The quickest way for an attorney to get disbarred is to misappropriate a clients money in a trust account.

    Attorney Stacy E. Pepper is licensed in all State and Federal Courts in Mississippi. He is a founding Partner in... more

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