In an attempt to keep car accident victims from hiring lawyers, ICBC adjusters often tell them that a lawyer will take half of their compensation. This is a myth.
First, most people who are injured in car accidents and hire a lawyer enter into what is called a “contingent fee agreement”. This means that we as your lawyer will only be paid a fee if we are successful in getting you compensation for your injuries. That fee will be a percentage of whatever we are able to recover. The Law Society of British Columbia caps that percentage at 1/3 – not half – of the amount recovered.
Second, if a lawsuit is started, the rules of court say that the successful party is entitled to some money known as “costs” from the unsuccessful party to help offset the former’s legal fees. A lawyer doesn’t take a fee on this amount, which goes directly into your pocket.
Third and perhaps most important, ICBC wants to minimize the amount of money they have to pay you and often does so by taking advantage of the fact that most people don’t know what their claim is worth. Hiring an experienced lawyer levels the playing field. We not only know what specific types of claims are available to you, but can determine they’re worth. Significantly, these can include claims for wage loss or out-of-pocket expenses that stand a good chance of materializing in the future.
Therefore, regardless of what an ICBC adjuster may tell you, you are more likely to get properly compensated for your injuries and losses by hiring one of our experienced ICBC injury lawyers.