How Much Does A Car Accident Lawyer Cost? Explained!

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How Much Does A Car Accident Lawyer Cost? Explained!

By  Dan McCrary | October 30, 2023

When a car accident happens, people usually try to sort things out without going to court because they know lawyers can be really expensive. But is it really the truth or just a myth that everyone believes? 

Honestly speaking, car accident lawyers cost a lot, especially if your case is serious, which includes injuries, financial loss, or potential threat to life. However, the case will be completely opposite if the car accident is minor. 

If you want to know the exact amount a car accident lawyer charges, read this guide until the end. Here, we’ll break down how much does a car accident lawyer costs exactly and what factors affect the charges. 

Are Car Accident Lawyers Expensive? 

Yes, car accident lawyers are expensive, and how much they charge depends on the accident case and the amount of settlement you’ll get. The bigger and more serious the accident, the more you must pay the lawyer. 

There are different ways in which a car accident lawyer charges the fee worldwide. In the USA, most lawyers go on a contingency or hourly basis. Contingency means you agree to pay a specific percentage to a lawyer if they successfully secure a settlement. 

Here’s a breakdown of how a contingency fee works: let’s suppose you agree on a 30% contingency fee with your lawyer (the percentage is just an example; not every lawyer charges a 30% fee; it can be high or low). 

  • Your lawyer follows your case, negotiates with the insurance company and gets a settlement of about $20,000 for your car accident case. 
  • The contingency fee is 30%, which you’ve promised to the lawyer, so according to this, the fee of the lawyer from the settlement amount will be $20,000 x 0.30 = $6,000.
  • Your lawyer will deduct the $6,000 from the settlement amount, and after that, you’ll get about $14,000. 

On the other hand, hourly billing involves the lawyer charging a set rate for every hour they spend working on your case. Some lawyers also go for a flat base or a hybrid model where your lawyer may charge a flat fee in the beginning and a contingency base fee in the end. 

It all depends on the lawyer you’re hiring and what type of payment method they prefer. You can also suggest to them how you want to pay, like on a contingency basis, hourly fee or a flat fee in the beginning.

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Factors That Affect The Costs And Expenses of A Car Accident Case

There’s one important point you should know: the overall cost of car accident cases isn’t only about lawyer fees. The issue is more serious if both parties, you and the insurer, don’t come to an agreement regarding your settlement.

In the case of disagreement, the lawyer will suggest you go to court, and everyone knows court procedure is way too expensive. First, you need to pay the court filing fee, which can vary depending on your location and the complexity of the case.

Remember, the court filing fee is separate from the lawyer’s charges, so you have to pay it directly to the court. Besides that, you may also have to pay for the expenses of gathering evidence to prove your case in court. 

The evidence includes medical records, accident reports, witness statements, and expert opinions. Some lawyers follow the case and charge at the end for all of these expenses, and others ask for payment on the spot. 

If you’re someone who can’t pay the fee for everything in the beginning, it’s best to discuss it with your lawyer and hire the one who agrees to the contingency fee. This way, you can pursue your case without worrying about the cost. 

Is It Worth Hiring An Attorney For A Car Accident?

Yes, it’s worth hiring an attorney for a car accident case. If you’re thinking that the overall cost of the lawyer is way too much, you can handle the settlement yourself; it’s a big mistake. You might be able to save a lawyer fee but end up with a significantly lower settlement amount. 

You need to understand that you have to deal with the settlement process with the insurer of the other party. In most cases, insurers try their best to convince you that you don’t deserve the settlement amount you’re seeking. 

Unfortunately, many individuals fell into the trap of accepting a lower settlement than they rightfully deserve due to pressure and tactics used by insurance companies. But if you have an experienced car accident lawyer on your side, the scenario will be different. 

Car accident lawyers know what insurance companies do and how to cope with their tactics to offer low settlements. As a result, they win most cases on behalf of the client and secure a fair settlement amount, making them worthy of hiring. 


To sum up, how much does a lawyer costs entirely depends on the severity of the case. Lawyers don't charge high for a settlement of minor accident cases. However, the fee will be high for big accident cases settlement. 

How they'll charge is up to you and the lawyer. Most of the lawyers in the USA charge contingency or hourly fees, and some opt for flat base fees or a hybrid model. It's best to discuss how you want to pay the lawyer before hiring.

Apart from the method of payment, discuss the extra cost of gathering evidence, expert witness fees, medical reports, and court filing fees in case of dispute. After having a transparent discussion about all the costs, make a decision to hire a lawyer.

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    McCrary Accident Injury Law Firm specializes in personal injury litigation. Its founder, Dan McCrary, Esq., spent 14 years working for the insurance companies before switching sides to represent personal injury victims in Rocklin as an attorney.

    Dan McCrary’s years of experience on the defense side taught him exactly how to obtain maximum recovery for his injured clients. If you have been injured in an accident you should contact the Accident & Injury Lawyers, Personal injury Attorney, Car accident lawyers at McCrary Accident Injury Law Firm in Rocklin, folsom, Sacramento to get the money you deserve, and overcome the tactics routinely employed by the insurance companies.