The Law Office of Charles J. Brocato accepts most personal injury cases on a contingency-fee basis. The contingent fee is the most common form of payment arrangement for plaintiffs needing representation in personal injury litigation. Instead of billing on an hourly basis, a contingency fee means that we are entitled to a portion — usually one-third — of the settlement or trial award. If you do not receive any compensation for damages, our firm is entitled to nothing. The contingent fee is perhaps the one device in law that gives injured people, no matter what their financial means, an even break in the courtroom against giant corporations and insurance companies. Were it not for the contingent fee, people of the middle class or low economic means would not be able to have their day in court, a contitutional right that corporations and insurance companies fight hard to eliminate. 

The “contingent” aspect or the fee means that, if there is no recovery, there is no attorney fee owed. There are a number of advantages to this type of arrangement, the most obvious of which is the absence of a risk of owing our firm a fee when there has been no recovery. Another important advantage is the security that the client should feel knowing that we have the same incentive as that of the client. The fact that we are willing to handle a client’s case on a contingent-fee basis is a reflection of the confidence in our ability to obtain a recovery in the case. 

The percentage to be charged on a contingent-fee case depends, to a large extent, on the type of case. In automobile-accident cases, a contingent fee of one-third (1/3) of the recovery is common. Medical and Legal malpractice cases and other more complex cases are often handled on a higher percentage basis, because they frequently consume substantially greater amounts of attorney time and resources. Contingency fees are paid at the conclusion of a case, and only if there is a recovery. 


In connection with handling your case, it is virtually certain that we will expend funds on your behalf to position the case for settlement and/or trial. Some of the expenses are fees to copy medical records, fees to file a lawsuit, transcript fees, court-reporter fees, expert-witness fees, and many others. In complex cases, out-of-pocket costs to prepare the case for trial can run into tens of thousands of dollars. In most cases, we will advance all fees to you so as to enable you to continue with your case through trial. 

Please call 253-851-9164 or e-mail for more information.