Do lawyers ever give their clients an advance on their settlement?
3 attorney answers
It is improper and unethical for an attorney to give an advance other than to pay for the costs of certain expenses in a client's case. However, there are many attorneys who can direct you to entities which are willing to lend money to you in exchange for an assignment of a portion of the proceeds of your injury settlement. These loans usually have very high interest rates which can eat significantly into your settlement proceeds if the settlement becomes drawn out or protracted or a lawsuit becomes necessary to resolve the case.
Only seek these types of loans as a last resort in a sever financial crisis.
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Attorneys are barred by ethical rules from giving advances on settlements. However, some do give small advances nontheless. Thre are alos companies that loan money in return for a lien on PI Settlements. I discourage my clients from getting these, but they can be helpful in and emergency.
No. You've got to figure, the lawyer gets paid out of any settlement or judgment, and doesn't see those funds until the defendant pays them. So what you're asking is, do lawyers front their personal injury clients money out of their own pockets pending settlement? I've never heard of any lawyer that personally gives advances on settlements to his or her clients. What if the client loses? Then the lawyer is out not only for his time (no fee in contingency cases if client does not win) but his own personal money as well.
What you're describing is basically a loan to the client, which is a business transaction, and there are ethical rules forbidding lawyers from entering into business transactions with their clients.
Not legal advice as I don't practice law in South Carolina. It's just my two cents on the facts you describe in light of general principles of law and legal practice. If you need legal advice, please consult a lawyer who holds South Carolina licensure. That's not me.
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