The problem with no win no fee lawyers is that such a model is built on benefiting the attorney at the client’s expense. The problem also stems from the client’s expectation of receiving free legal services, that costs thousands of dollars, for free with all risks taken by the attorney and none by the client.
Here are a few facts one should know before signing up with a no win no fee lawyer:
Litigation is unpredictable
People often forget lawyers are not wizards. While we can make a good faith prediction of whether a client can win, the truth is only one side prevails, and therefore half of the time attorneys are in fact wrong. That means, while individual success rates may vary, statistically attorneys–as a whole– only have a 50% chance of succeeding. Adding into account the complex procedural aspects of litigation and the uncertainty of predicting the human mind (judge or jury) no one can be 100% sure that they will be able to provide the relief the client is expecting. Indeed, even the best of the best will lose at some point in their legal career. Point being: there is never a guarantee of winning a case.
Litigation is expensive
An average case can cost a client (or lawyer, if he takes on a no win no fee case) anywhere between $30,000- $150,000. That’s a lot of money! Now a pragmatic person one would wonder, if there is a chance of losing, why would attorneys pick up cases on a 100% contingency no win no fee agreement? Perhaps, some lawyers suffer from the mistaken belief that they are better than others? Perhaps they believe that the case would settle with minimal effort? Or perhaps they have some other reason?
Your no win no lawyer does not care about you
However, one thing is for certain, regardless of the reason why the lawyer decided to take your case, your ‘no win no fee’ attorney doesn’t have your best interest in mind. But rather he or she cares about their own business interests first. Your interests are only secondary to their own.
Now you may be inclined to ask: but wait, how can you make such a bold prediction without knowing each individual attorney? The answer is simpler than it seems. The legal profession is a business. If a lawyer does not bring in money for the firm, then they are either fired or they have to shut down operations.
Sum it up: You get what you pay for
Now let’s add up everything together: First, lawyers cannot predict the outcome of a case. Even the best of the best knows he or she may lose a case. Second, trials are expensive costing upper thousands to hundreds of thousands dollars. In a no win no fee situation, the lawyer has to take out loans, dig into savings, etc., to survive and pay their staff during the duration of the case. Third, if the lawyer does not make money, they either get fired or they are forced to cease operations. Thus, no win no fee cases become an extremely risky business for the lawyer. And lawyers know this before getting into such fee agreements. Thus, like any businessperson, attorneys have a duty to minimize their personal risks. Given these circumstances, it is foolish to expect that lawyers in such an agreement would not think about themselves first and put their needs ahead of yours. After all, his or her survival is on the line.
However, some clients fail to see this unrealistic underlying business model. They fall into this too good to be true no win no fee deal on face value. They expect to have the best lawyer to provide the best service and to look out for their interests. All for FREE, with no costs to them!?! As they say, you get what you pay for. The no win no fee contingency fee model is no different.
Chhabra Law Firm provides strategic and aggressive defense. We do not represent clients on a no win no fee model. In fact, we become bad for business for any opposing counsel who represents a client on such a model forcing them to drop out of the matter and let go their client’s interests. Since litigation tends to be very expensive, we can assist you with a partial contingency fee agreement, once the initial stages of litigation are over.