The second article; Seeking Legal Aid after a Car Accident (Part 2); discussed the importance seeking legal assistance if you have been involved in a car accident. A legal expert should be on your side so you can focus on your recovery while he handles most of the legal works that are involved in the process.
When you meet a Los Angeles accident attorney, you will have a chance to observe his work attitude. If he passed your expectations, then you can ask him to represent you during court proceedings.
Before he "officially" becomes your lawyer, it is advisable that a representation agreement should be first signed by the two parties. This contract will specify the relationship that will exist between you and your lawyer as well as the amount of money you are required to provide him when the trial is over.
The primary reason why it should be made is to ensure that the two of you will be fully aware of what each party expects from the other. For example, you may require your attorney to call you every week in order to give you an update about the status of your case. In return, he may require you to give him certain documents which can be presented during the hearings.
Today, many personal injury lawyers are paid on a contingency basis, meaning they will be entitled to get a certain percentage of the award that will be given to their client upon winning the case.
This set-up will enable you to take legal action even if you do not have much money. You are also assured that your lawyer will do everything he can to help you because if you lose your case, he will not be paid for his services.
In the agreement, it should also be stated that your lawyer will be entitled to receive the contingency fee. In many cases, contingency fee ranges from 20 up to 40 percent of the money that is given to the plaintiff.
Aside from the terms of payment, here are two other issues that should also be covered by the agreement:
- Extent and duration of representation- The agreement should specify how far and long your lawyer will help you. He may be responsible in representing you in court, but he can refuse to file an appeal on your behalf if ever you lose the case.
- Division of duties- Although your lawyer will help you as much as he can, do not expect that he can handle every little thing that is involved in the case. For example, you may be required to give him some of your files so that he can allot more of his time doing other things that are related to the case.