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Lawyer fee from property damage settlement

Pomona, CA |

I recently settled a property damage lawsuit from a car accident several years ago. Back when I was invovled in the car accident, I rented a car for several months, and was told by the lawyer's office, that it was okay, since they would get me the money back. Years later, after finally going to arbitration, I was awarded the full amount, but am being told by the lawyer that they will be taking 40% plus the arbitrator fee, even though I was told by the office they would not take money from this settlement, but now being told differently now, since it went into litigation. This is on top of the money they already collected on the injury settlement. Is there anything I can do about this? or do I just have to take it as a loss? Thanks

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Attorney answers 4


The attorneys fees are dictated by the written retainer agreement between you and the attorney, not any oral promises made.

California Business and Professions Code Sections 6200-6206 requires attorneys to arbitrate fee disputes and to provide written notice of the client’s right to arbitrate prior to or at the commencement of any proceeding against the client.

If you have a fee dispute with your attorney, I suggest you utilize the services of the Los Angeles County Bar Association's fee dispute arbitration and mediation program:

The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author (who is only admitted to practice law in the State of California). For specific advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.


Agree with attorney Chen.


You need to review the retainer agreement you signed with your attorneys to see the fees you agreed on. If there was not a written fee agreement between you and your attorneys, you will need to get help in resolving this dispute. Contacting the State Bar is a good first step.


Most P.I. lawyers do not charge for recovering property damage settlements. Rather they charge you attorney fees on the bodily injury settlement or award. I only charge attorney fees in complicated loss or diminution in value claims for property damage recoveries.

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