Contingency Fee Agreement

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This Contingency Fee Agreement is between a client and an attorney who agrees to represent the client on a contingency basis. Under this agreement, no fees will be owed if a recovery is not successful.

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This Contingency Fee Agreement is between a client and an attorney who agrees to represent the client on a contingency fee basis. This agreement sets out the name of the client, brief description of the case and warranties and representations made by the attorney to the client. It also sets out how any costs will be paid, compensation the attorney will receive if the case is successful and detailed examples of how this compensation is calculated. It is imperative that this type of fee arrangement be clearly set out in writing. A well-written Contingency Fee Agreement will prove invaluable in the event there are disagreements or misunderstandings regarding the fees paid for any recovery.

This Contingency Fee Agreement includes the following:
  • Parties: Sets forth the names of the client and the attorney who will represent the client in a lawsuit;
  • Costs/Recovery: Sets out how costs (i.e. filing fees, depositions, experts) will be paid and if there is no recovery that no fees will be owed;
  • Compensation: Sets forth the percentage amount which will be paid to the attorney in the event there is a recovery (i.e. 33 1/3%, 40%);
  • Structured Settlements: Sets forth examples of payment in the event a structured settlement is agreed to;
  • Independent Legal Advice: Client acknowledges that he/she was informed that the contents of this agreement should be discussed with another attorney prior to signing;
  • Signatures: This agreement must be signed and dated by both the attorney and the client.

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This attorney-prepared packet contains:
  1. General Information
  2. Contingency Fee Agreement
State Law Compliance: This form complies with the laws of all states
Number of Pages4
DimensionsDesigned for Letter Size (8.5" x 11")
EditableYes (.doc, .wpd and .rtf)
UsageUnlimited number of prints
Product number#28062
This is the content of the form and is provided for your convenience. It is not necessarily what the actual form looks like and does not include the information, instructions and other materials that come with the form you would purchase. An actual sample can also be viewed by clicking on the "Sample Form" near the top left of this page.
Initials of Client ________      Initials of Attorney_______   
1)    In General.  I, the undersigned, do hereby retain and employ the law firm of ___________________________ as my attorney of record, to represent me in a claim for injuries I sustained as a result of the following:                                                                  ______
All references to "my attorney" herein shall be to the law firm of _________________________.
2)    Costs. If applicable to my case, it is understood that all costs and expenses, including investigation, the filing of a lawsuit or arbitration, court costs, appeals, and related expenses shall be my responsibility, regardless of the outcome.  Costs shall include, but not limited to, such items as the filing fee for the complaint, service of process, depositions, costs of obtaining files and records, medical and other experts if necessary, travel expenses, food and lodging, runner services, overnight express charges, postage, photocopying and related items.  It is further agreed that any costs which may be advanced by counsel on my behalf will be promptly reimbursed through any settlement, decision, mediation, award or verdict which may be rendered in my case, as more fully described below.  I understand that in the event of a loss, I may be liable for the opposing party's attorney fees and related costs.
3)    No Recovery, No Fee.  If no recovery is received, it is understood that I am not obligated to pay any fee to my attorney for his services, other than any costs which may have been incurred or advances made on my behalf.
4)    Compensation.  I agree to the following compensation arrangement with my attorney for the services he performs:
a)    I agree to pay to my attorney a fee equal to (a) one third (1/3) of any and all sums which are recovered (before deducting for costs and expenses), if the matter is settled before a lawsuit or arbitration is filed, (b) forty percent (40%) of the total recovery (before deducting for costs and expenses) after a lawsuit or arbitration is filed or a trial occurs, and (c) forty-five percent (45%) of the total recovery (before deducting for costs and expenses) in the event of any appeal of a trial or arbitration.
b)    Definition of "Total Recovery".   For purposes of this agreement, and irrespective of the nature of my claim, "total recovery" shall be defined as all sums of money, including without limitation, jury, arbitration, disability awards, insurance awards, mediation findings, and or structured settlements, or anything else of value which may be recovered from any or all of the defendants, or from any other person, insurance company or other entity.
c)    Structured Settlements.  In the event the recovery involves a structured settlement, at his option, my attorney may elect to receive all of his fees either, (a) immediately upon settlement (which would then be based on the actual cost of the structured settlement at the time it is obtained), or (b) as each payment is received by me (which would then be based on the applicable  percentage at the time [i.e., 1/3, 40%, etc.] ).
d)    Examples.  The following are two examples, for the purposes of illustration only, to help explain how payments would be made:
i)    Example #1:  For the sake of example only, if the value of the total amount recovered is $10,000.00, and the total costs were $1,000.00, then according to the terms of the retainer, my attorney would be entitled to receive $3,333.33 if the matter was settled before a lawsuit or arbitration was filed, $4,000.00 if a lawsuit or arbitration was filed or the matter  proceeded to trial, etc.  From the balance remaining, costs would then be deducted and I would receive the total remaining funds.
ii)    Example #2:  For the sake of example only, if the award was in the form of a structured settlement, which initially cost $30,000.00 to purchase and which would pay $10,000.00 up front, plus monthly payments of $1,000.00 per month for 20 years, then according to the terms of the retainer, my attorney, at his option, could elect to receive either (a) his percentage based on the cost of the structured settlement only (i.e., $10,000.00 if the matter was settled before a lawsuit or arbitration was filed ($12,000.00 if a lawsuit or arbitration was filed or the matter proceeded to trial, etc.), or (b) his percentage based on the payments as they were made to me (i.e., $3,333.33 at the time of settlement, plus $333.33 of each $1,000.00 payment as they are made for 20 years if the matter was settled before a lawsuit or arbitration was filed [$4,000.00 at the time of settlement, plus $400.00 of each $1,000.00 payment as they are made for 20 years if lawsuit or arbitration was filed or the matter proceeded to trial, etc.]).
5)    Warranties and Representations.  I acknowledge my attorney can make no guarantees as to the outcome of my case or as to the nature of his representation.  Further, no liability shall attach to me or to my attorney for any good faith errors of judgment in the above matter, including actions or personal conduct of either based upon errors of judgment unless shown to have been reckless, willful and clearly negligent.  It is further agreed that neither I nor my attorney shall settle or compromise this matter without the consent and approval of the other.  Should such settlement be made by me, my attorney shall still receive full compensation in accordance with the terms and provisions of this agreement.
6)    Attorney's Lien.  I expressly grant a lien and assign to my attorney all proceeds, awards, judgments, settlements and all fees, costs, expenses and disbursements, plus interest at the legal rate, if applicable, regarding my case, but limited only to the extent of his claim for fees and compensation as computed above.
7)    Consultations and Meetings.   I agree to be available for all necessary consultations and appearances.  I further acknowledge that I shall utilize my best efforts toward the successful termination of the actions to be taken, and that I shall fully cooperate with my attorney in all necessary respects.
8)    Binding Agreement.  This Agreement shall be binding on each of us and shall inure to the benefit of the administrators, legal representatives, successors, assigns and transferees of the parties hereto.
9)    Attorney Fees.  Should my attorney be required to institute suit or any other collection action to enforce his lien or the assignment granted to him by this agreement, or any portion of it, I agree to pay all reasonable additional attorney fees in connection with such suit or other enforcement or collection action, along with all costs, expenses and disbursements as may also be necessary.
10)    Additional Legal Counsel.  I acknowledge that my attorney may employ associate counsel, in his sole discretion, but it is understood that the compensation of any additional counsel shall not increase the attorney fees payable by me, and all percentages as described herein shall remain the same.
11)    Withdrawal of Counsel.  I acknowledge that my attorney may withdraw as counsel upon 10 days written notice to me at any time.  If my attorney withdraws as counsel, or in the event I choose to fire my attorney and hire another lawyer to represent me, I hereby agree to pay the law firm of ___________________________ from any settlement proceeds, award, finding, or verdict, the full value of the services rendered prior to such withdrawal or termination, at the rate of $350.00 per hour, which I acknowledge is the reasonable value of such services.  
Irrespective, I will remain fully responsible for, and pay, all costs and fees which may have been incurred on my behalf.  If I request my files and records, I agree in advance to pay the reasonable cost of photocopying those records by my attorney, at the rate of 35 cents per page.
12)    Independent Legal Counsel.  I acknowledge that my attorney has informed me that I should discuss the contents of this retainer agreement with independent legal counsel before signing it.  I further acknowledge that, after having been so informed, I have voluntarily agreed to enter into this retainer agreement.
13)    Entirety Clause.  Should any portion of this agreement be deemed void, unenforceable, or against public policy, the remainder of the terms and provisions shall remain in full force and effect.
14)    Governing Law.  This Agreement shall be governed by, and in accordance with ____________ law in the event of a dispute or controversy.  I further consent to venue and personal jurisdiction in ___________________________ County, ________ , in the event of a dispute or controversy.  I acknowledge and understand that a lawsuit brought solely to harass or to coerce a settlement may result in liability for malicious prosecution or abuse of process.
IN WITNESS OF WHEREOF the parties agree to all terms and conditions.
Date      CLIENT
Date      ATTORNEY, for and on behalf of
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