What is the cost to discuss my potential case?
Like all law firms that operate a contingent model, there is no charge to discuss your potential case.
If you take my case, what will be the fee charged?
We typically handle personal injury matters and charge clients what is called a contingency fee. This means that our fee for the legal services we provide will be based on a percentage of what we recover for you. In most cases the percentage is a third of the net recovery. The net recovery refers to the amount recovered less the expenses incurred to obtain the recovery. For example, if the recovery is $100,000 and the case expenses were $4,000, the net recovery would be $96,000 and the fee would be a third of that, or $32,000. If you do not recover, there is no fee charged. Medical malpractice cases have a special sliding fee scale that depends on the amount recovered. The scale starts at 30% and drops to 10% once the recovery exceeds $1,250,000. If we accept your case we will enter into a written contingency fee agreement that will clearly spell out all of these details.
What are case expenses and how are they different from the attorney’s fee?
Case expenses are out-of-pocket expenses that Faraci Lange incurs in prosecuting your case. These can be court filing fees, fees charged to obtain copies of medical records and fees charged by expert witnesses or doctors to testify in the case, to name a few. Typically, the majority of the expenses incurred will come at the time of trial. Case expenses are not fees for the attorney’s work.
Will I have to pay case expenses as they are incurred?
In most cases, once Faraci Lange has accepted your case we will pay the expenses necessary to win the case on your behalf and then we will be reimbursed out of the recovery. In some cases, such as medical malpractice investigations, we will frequently ask for a contribution from the client toward the expenses for the initial investigation to cover the cost of obtaining the medical records and the initial expert review. But after the initial investigation is complete and we decide to go forward with a case, we will typically advance the expenses necessary to win.
If I come to your firm, will one of your top lawyers work on my case or will I get someone else?
If you come to Faraci Lange your case will be supervised by one of our top trial lawyers. We typically work on cases in teams, with associate attorneys, nurse consultants, paralegals, and legal assistants also assisting the trial lawyer in preparing the case.
I have read about other lawyers being disciplined for unethical conduct. Has that ever happened at Faraci Lange?
No, and it never will. At Faraci Lange we believe in strict compliance with all ethical standards imposed on our profession. It is important to us not only to represent clients, but also to represent them ethically. This is one of the reasons we have attained the reputation in the legal community that we have always enjoyed and why we are so widely respected by judges and attorneys alike.
Some lawyers say that if I retain them they can settle my case rather than go to trial. That sounds appealing to me as I would rather not have to go to trial. If Faraci Lange has so many top trial lawyers, does that mean you will probably not be able to settle out of court?
No, it is actually quite the opposite. Fair settlements are achieved because the insurance companies and corporate defendants are convinced that you are ready to beat them at trial. Firms that claim they can settle your case and guarantee that you will not have to go to trial are really saying that they are willing to accept much less than the case is worth in order to avoid a trial. Moreover, the insurance companies know that these firms will never try the case and will offer much lower settlements because of that. That will not happen at Faraci Lange. Even though we have top trial lawyers who have won many cases we still settle the vast majority of the cases we take because defendants would rather not face us in court.
Some firms advertise that they have obtained hundreds of millions of dollars for their clients. If you have been so successful for so many years, why don’t you say that?
Two reasons. We believe in respecting a client’s privacy and not trying to exploit their recovery for our own selfish purposes. Also, juries today have a misconception of how difficult it is to win cases in the current environment. Part of that misconception is based upon advertising by some law firms claiming that they have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars. What is never stated is that most of that money is needed by the clients to replace their lost wages and pay their enormous medical bills. We have chosen not to further contribute to this public misconception.
If I recover either a settlement or a verdict from a jury as compensation for my injuries, how much will I have to pay out in income taxes?
With very few exceptions, compensation paid for personal injuries are not taxable. Therefore, in most cases you will not owe any income tax on amounts paid in settlement or after a jury verdict.
How much is my case worth?
The ultimate value of a case is based upon multiple factors. For this reason, we will never be able to quote you a specific number at the outset and any attorney who says otherwise is not being honest with you. A case is worth what a typical jury would award for it. However, since each jury is a unique group of six people, we must pull from our vast experience to come up with a range based upon prior cases involving similar injuries. If there is an arguable defense to your claim, which is virtually always true, then the chances of the defense succeeding at trial must also be factored in. Valuing personal injury claims in light of all of these factors is not an exact science, but because Faraci Lange has so many experienced trial lawyers, our combined experience is tremendously helpful.
How long will my case likely take?
Precise estimates on this issue are also very difficult. In some situations we will need to wait for your medical condition to become clear. Faraci Lange will never try to settle your case before your doctors are reasonably sure of what your medical outcome will be. Because this is your only shot, we need to make it count. Once we file suit most cases can be resolved in 2-3 years. However, the judge assigned and how busy his or her schedule is will always be a major factor in determining when the case will be set for trial.
How do I know that you are experienced in handling my type of case?
Although every case is unique, because Faraci Lange has been representing injured plaintiffs for over forty-five years and because we have so many experienced trial attorneys, it is a virtual certainty that if you have a personal injury case we will have handled one like it in the past.
My case involves very complex medical issues. How do I know you are capable of understanding these complex issues sufficiently to represent my interests?
Although Faraci Lange has many experienced attorneys who have handled many complex medical claims in the past, we also have four legal nurse consultants who formerly worked in the health care field and who have been trained to conduct thorough medical research on any subject matter and to understand medical records. We also work closely with outside consultants with expertise in every field imaginable. These consultants will educate the attorneys to the point that we can become experts ourselves on any medical issue.