Do Lawyers Get Paid from a Settlement Before Medical Bills?

Do Lawyers Get Paid from a Settlement Before Medical Bills?

Do Lawyers Get Paid from a Settlement Before Medical Bills

When you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, the last thing you want to worry about is how you’ll pay your medical bills and attorney fees. It’s a common question we hear from our clients: “Do lawyers get paid from a settlement before medical bills?”

The truth is, the answer to that question is not always cut and dry. It depends on a variety of factors, including the specific details of your case, the jurisdiction in which your claim is being handled, and the agreements you have in place with your attorney and healthcare providers.

Understanding the Settlement Payment Process

According to the latest data from the National Safety Council, the cost per medically consulted injury was around $40,000, while the cost per death was $1,390,000. These numbers include estimates of wage losses, medical expenses, administrative expenses, and employer costs.

With such significant sums at stake, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of how attorney’s fees fit into the equation. This knowledge can play a vital role in safeguarding your financial health in the aftermath of an injury.

At first glance, the prospect of paying attorney’s fees on top of mounting medical bills and lost income may seem daunting. However, engaging the services of a skilled personal injury attorney can actually prove to be a wise investment in your financial future.

Contingency Agreements and Attorney Fees

Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning they only get paid if they win your case. This arrangement allows injury victims to pursue legal action without having to pay upfront costs. Your attorney will cover expenses such as hiring experts, conducting tests, and court fees during the legal process.

When your case is won, your attorney will deduct their fees from the settlement amount. The specifics of the contingency agreement, including the percentage of the settlement your attorney will receive, will be outlined in your contract.

Covering Expenses During the Legal Process

While your attorney is working hard to secure a favorable settlement, you may still be facing mounting medical bills and other expenses related to your injury. It’s important to communicate with your attorney about these costs and discuss potential solutions.

In some cases, your attorney may be able to negotiate with healthcare providers to delay payment until your settlement is received. They may also explore other options, such as pre-settlement funding, to help you stay afloat financially during the legal process.

Prioritizing Payments from a Settlement

With multiple competing interests at play, from medical bills and attorney’s fees to lost wages and future expenses, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of how these payments will be allocated.

Medical Bills and Subrogation Agreements

Once your settlement is received, your attorney will prioritize paying off your medical expenses. This may involve negotiating with insurance companies to reduce your medical debt through subrogation agreements.

Subrogation agreements are an important aspect of personal injury cases that involve insurance companies. In essence, subrogation is the legal right of an insurance company to pursue reimbursement from the party responsible for causing the injury after the insurance company has paid out benefits to the injured party.

For example, let’s say you were injured in a car accident and incurred $50,000 in medical bills. Your health insurance company paid $40,000 of those bills, leaving you with a $10,000 balance.

Your attorney may be able to negotiate with the insurance company to accept a lower amount, say $30,000, as payment in full. This would satisfy your medical debt and leave more money from the settlement for your other expenses and damages.

Attorney Fees and Out-of-Pocket Costs

After your medical bills are paid, your attorney will deduct their fees and any out-of-pocket costs they incurred while working on your case. These costs may include expert witness fees, court filing fees, and the cost of obtaining medical records and police reports.

It’s crucial to review your attorney’s contract carefully to understand what percentage of the settlement they will receive and what costs you’ll be responsible for. Don’t hesitate to ask questions if anything is unclear.

Disbursement of Remaining Settlement Funds

Once your medical bills, attorney fees, and other costs have been paid, the remaining settlement funds will be disbursed to you. Your attorney will provide you with a detailed breakdown of how the settlement was allocated and what expenses were paid.

You’ll likely need to sign a release agreeing not to pursue further legal action against the liable party in exchange for accepting the settlement. After that, you’ll receive a check for the remaining balance, which you can deposit into your bank account or cash at the issuing bank.

Navigating Financial Challenges During the Legal Process

When you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence, the path to securing fair compensation can be a long and winding one.

Amidst the physical pain, emotional upheaval, and mounting medical bills, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the financial challenges. Fortunately, there are legitimate means to access necessary funds.

Pre-Settlement Funding Options

We understand that waiting for a settlement can be financially challenging, especially if you’re unable to work due to your injuries. That’s why we often recommend pre-settlement funding to our clients.

Pre-settlement funding, also known as a lawsuit loan, is an advance on your expected settlement. If your case is strong and your attorney believes you’ll win, you may be eligible for this type of funding. The best part? If your case is unsuccessful, you won’t have to pay back the advance. It’s a risk-free option that can provide much-needed financial relief during a difficult time.

At Tribeca Lawsuit Loans, we specialize in providing pre-settlement funding to injury victims. Our loan representatives can help you understand your options and guide you through the application process. Give us a call at 866-388-2288 to learn more.

Key Takeaways and Next Steps

Personal injury attorneys typically work on a contingency basis, meaning they only get paid if they win your case. Your attorney will prioritize paying off your medical bills and other expenses before deducting their fees from the settlement.

Pre-settlement funding can provide financial support while you await your settlement. Consult with your attorney to discuss your specific case and understand how your settlement will be allocated.

Remember, every case is unique, and the specifics of your settlement payment process may vary. Your attorney is your best resource for understanding how your medical bills, attorney fees, and other expenses will be handled.

If you’re struggling financially while awaiting your settlement, don’t hesitate to explore pre-settlement funding options.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use my settlement money to pay off debts unrelated to my injury?

Once your medical bills, attorney fees, and other case-related expenses have been paid, the remaining settlement funds are yours to use as you see fit. This may include paying off unrelated debts, such as credit card balances or student loans.

What happens if my settlement isn’t enough to cover all my expenses?

In some cases, your settlement may not be sufficient to cover all your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. Your attorney will work with you to prioritize payments and negotiate with creditors to reduce your debt. You may also explore additional sources of compensation, such as underinsured motorist coverage or personal injury protection (PIP) benefits.

How long does it typically take to receive my settlement check?

The timeline for receiving your settlement check can vary depending on the complexity of your case and the responsiveness of the liable party. Once a settlement is reached, it may take several weeks for the check to be processed and for your attorney to allocate the funds. Your attorney will keep you informed of the progress and provide an estimated timeline for receiving your portion of the settlement.

Are there any tax implications I should be aware of when receiving a personal injury settlement?

Generally, personal injury settlements are not considered taxable income by the IRS. However, there are some exceptions, such as if you claimed medical expenses related to your injury as a deduction in previous tax years. It’s best to consult with a tax professional to understand any potential tax implications of your settlement.

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