Does an attorney in mass get their 33 1/3 percent fee after a settlements lien is paid or before
2 Answers from Attorneys
Your attorney's fee is governed by your Representation Agreement. It could be more than 1/3, it could be less; it could be out of the gross, or the net. Typically, however, the 1/3 fee is calculated on the total amount of the settlement, so, that would be before your liens are pad off. Naturally, it would not be fair to calculate it otherwise. Imagine the following: Settlement is $10,000, outstanding IRS or Child Support or Medicare liens exceed $10,000- what then, no fee for the lawyer's work?! Therefore, the fee is paid before the liens, and then the liens are paid.
Whatever you agreed to, look at the fee agreement you signed. No lawyer would agree to work for free to satisfy your liens, but perhaps your agreement provides otherwise. Understand, you could have paid for the now-liened services out of pocket. Best luck. Regards, JBS