If you are seeking a wrongful death lawyer, like one of the Auto Accident Lawyers Indianapolis, IN residents turn to, you should understand that most lawyers who limit their practice to accidental deaths and personal injury law, work on a contingency fee basis. That means that the attorney advocate receives remuneration for their services only after the plaintiff (the estate of the deceased) receives the settlement or the awarded funds. Generally speaking, the estate is not required to pay the attorney by the hour for representation, nor are they required to pay defense attorney fees and court costs should the defendant prevail—unless, of course, the judge deems the claim to be a ‘frivolous’ waste of court time and taxpayer money.
The contingency payment arrangement between the wrongful death lawyer and the estate of the deceased, uniquely favors the victim of an accidental death and their legal beneficiaries, thereby assuring equal access to the courts by everyone.
But litigation can be a costly endeavor for a wrongful death lawyer as their firm’s resources must be adequate to not only cover the payroll of lawyers and paralegals while the case is in litigation, but also the many ancillary expenses for every client they represent. Ancillary expenses in a wrongful death claim may include:
- Private investigator fees
- Court and process service fees
- Medical records and statements
- Toxicology fees
- Medical reports
- Expert witness retainers
- Deposition fees
- Court reporters
- Mediation fees
- Travel expenses
Many firms self-fund a full case load of wrongful death claims. Others look to outside investors for working capital. A wrongful death lawyer may look to a litigation financing firm to obtain the necessary capital to fund their clients’ claims. And it is not unusual for a firm to establish a professional working relationship with a bank willing to provide a line of credit for their litigation expenses.
To adequately build and litigate your case, a wrongful death lawyer must have the reserves on hand to fund every aspect and obstacle of your wrongful death claim. When searching for a wrongful death lawyer, seek an attorney with a proven reputation as such; one who limits their practice to the successful pursuit of wrongful death and personal injury claims; one who has earned the respect of their legal colleagues.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Ward & Ward for their insight into wrongful death cases.