I cannot say this is always false – but it almost always is false.
People say this because they think that the lawyer’s fee will be so high that it will eclipse any bargaining advantage they will gain from hiring the lawyer. But this is hardly ever the case.
A couple years ago, a family tried to hire me. The insurance company had offered them $17,000 for an injury their daughter had suffered in an accident. In the accident, she had been knocked out, and she had a very small scar on her face, where her cheek had been penetrated by a ballpoint pen.
I told them I didn’t think I could do any better, and not to hire me – because I would have to charge something, and I didn’t think that the insurance company would pay enough more to justify my taking their case. Basically, I would just be charging them for filling out the paperwork to get the settlement approved by the probate court, and I thought they could do this themselves.)
The family went away, and – because the girl was 15 – they applied to the local probate court judge to approve the settlement.
The probate judge said that he could see her scar from the bench (I could not see it from ten feet. If she ever misses a date because of the scar, I will be surprised.) He would not approve the settlement until they had seen a lawyer.
They came to see me again. This time, I said I would take the case. I charged them based on a percentage of what I could get more than the original offer. I wound up getting the original insurance company to pay its limits of $25,000.00, and then getting another $10,000 from their underinsured motorist coverage insurer.
So – bottom line – I got the insurance companies to pay roughly twice what was going to be paid before, and my clients received – netted – $10,000 more than they would have received without me.
Obviously, this case was not typical. But I cannot think of a case where my client lost money for hiring a lawyer. Almost always, they get more money than the insurance company’s original offer.
One more thing – even if you don’t net a dime more – I think hiring a lawyer is worth it so you can get rid of the stress of talking to the insurance company. Most people don’t know what they can say to them without hurting themselves, and without worrying about it before and after the conversation. Most people aren’t used to it.
But I do make money for my clients.
I’d love to talk with you about this. Other lawyers refer their clients to me. And if you decide you‘d rather hire someone else, that’s OK.
But you don’t have to rely just on what you are reading.
You can call me, a Cincinnati Personal Injury Attorney. My phone is 513-621-4775. There is no charge for talking to me. And you can make your decision on whether to hire a lawyer after we’ve talked about your lawsuit.
Because all situations are different, and because there may be other facts pertaining to your case that I don’t know about, you should not rely on this answer for legal advice. I am not your attorney, and no lawyer client relationship has been formed. All discussions are limited to Ohio law unless otherwise indicated. And past performance cannot be used to predict future results.