Legal Question in Personal Injury in Minnesota

legal fees

I have a personal injury lawsuit where the lawyer is now pressuring me to agree to a low amount for my car accident with a semi. He is now telling me that I will have to pay some money up front if I want to bring this to trial instead of agreeing to accepting under $100,000. The semi that I hit failed to stop at a stop sign and came onto the 4 lane highway. I hit him and since have not worked and have had neck surgery with a bone from my hip and a plate inserted. I have PTSD, fibromyalgia, migraines and sleep positional sleep apnea (due to the fibromyalgia) among other things. Can he ask for this $ legally?

Asked on 2/17/06, 1:00 am

3 Answers from Attorneys

J. Chris Carpenter Harvey and Carpenter

Re: legal fees

The P/I attorney wants this client to pay for some of the out-of-pocket expense if he wants to go to trial. This isn't unethical OR unheard of. It probably says more about the attorney's assessment of the case than anything else...he'd prefer to settle than take his chances in court and isn't willing to put his own $$ into it. I'm not sure whether there are other things at issue here - w/c, a health subro, etc....those can also affect the value of the case (as can the venue of the case). R

Ruth M. Harvey

Chesley, Kroon, Chambers, Harvey & Carpenter PLLP

75 Teton Lane, PO Box 327

Mankato, MN 56002

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Answered on 2/17/06, 3:32 pm
Todd Johnson Johnson & Bannon

Re: legal fees

What your attorney can or can not do is most likely determined by the written fee agreement you have with him. I would strongly suggest that you contact another attorney to discuss this matter. If you are not satisfied with the representation of your attorney you have the right to get another attorney.

By contacting another attorney you can also hopefully get some input into the question of whether your claim is worth more than your original lawyer is suggesting.

Although our office is not representing you on this matter I hope this information was helpful.

Good luck.

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Answered on 2/17/06, 9:24 am
Donald Kohler Donald W. Kohler, Attorney at Law

Re: legal fees

Yes. It is not unusual for any attorney to ask you to pay up front the fees for trial expenses if he or she does not believe that your case will result in a verdict that results in a net greater than the settlement offer. You should discuss trial costs with your attorney and also have him explain to you what costs may possibly assessed if a Rule 68 offer of judgment is made.

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Answered on 2/17/06, 9:30 am

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