The answer is yes, you can.
Here's the scenario...
You loved your doctor.
He treated you well.
You trusted him.
Except this one time.
He dropped the ball.
This NEVER should have happened.
He actually apologized.
You now need months of additional medical care.
Now you need corrective surgery.
Now you'll need physical rehabilitation.
All because your doctor was careless.
He didn't do this intentionally.
But you don't understand how and why he allowed this to happen.
You believe your doctor violated the basic standards of medical care.
You believe that improper medical care cause you injury.
You also believe that your injuries are permanent and disabling.
You're now out of work.
You have not been able to return to work for months.
You can't drive either.
You can't go up and down the stairs.
You can't play with your kids.
You can't help your spouse around the house with the chores.
Your family feels for you.
Your family sees you suffer in pain every morning and every evening.
They see how it hurts to do the simplist of life's tasks.
Your life has been turned upside down.
You want answers.
You want your life to go back to normal.
To the way it was before you had that life-altering surgical procedure.
You've talked it over with your family.
You've talked it over with your close friends.
They all agree you need to sue.
They all agree that your doctor is not going to voluntarily agree to give you money to compensate you for all the harms, losses and injuries you suffered.
There's only one problem...
You can't afford to hire an attorney.
You can't afford to hire the best trial lawyer in New York.
You've heard they charge hundreds of dollars an hour.
You've heard some attorneys charge thousands of dollars an hour.
You've heard that some lawyers ask you to pay a retainer of $25,000 just to investigate your case.
You don't have that kind of money.
You don't have any spare cash to pay an attorney.
Even if you did, you don't have enough to pay an attorney an hourly fee over the course of two to three years.
That would be so expensive!
Is there any way for you to be able to hire the best trial lawyer you can find without having to pay him an hourly fee?
Is there any way an attorney in New York would be willing to take on your case and accept a percentage of whatever he gets for you?
Is there any way an attorney would agree to finance all your litigation costs?
The answer is yes, yes and yes.
Lawyers in New York who handle medical malpractice and wrongful death case do this.
They don't charge hourly fees.
That's comforting to know.
This way you don't have to pay them hundreds and thousands of dollars per hour for their time, their knowledge and their expertise.
"Well, if they agree not to get paid hourly, you know they're not working for free, so how is it they get paid?" you ask.
They agree to a percentage of what you get if you are successful.
That means they ONLY get paid if you are successful.
That means if you lose your case, your attorney gets nothing.
None of his litigation expenses are repaid to him.
He's out a lot of money as well as his time, energy and resources that he devoted to handling and prosecuting your case.
That means he's taking a risk when he accepts you and your case.
He's taking a big risk since there's no guarantee you'll be successful and settle your case or win at trial.
He's actually making an investment.
An investment in you.
An investment in your case.
As with any investment, some are riskier than others.
If however your attorney is successful at getting you money, then all the litigation expenses that he paid on your behalf to finance your case gets repaid to him.
That get's paid first.
Legally, that's known as his legal disbursements.
Money that he has paid to finance and prosecute your case.
After that money is repaid to your lawyer, the attorney's fee is now calcuated.
Remember I said earlier that the attorney's fee is a percentage of what he gets for you?
In medical malpractice cases, there is a formula used to calcuate the attorney's fee.
In New York, that percentage is known as a sliding scale.
It's NOT 1/3 of what we get for you.
That only applies to an accident case.
Medical malpractice cases are different.
In a malpractice case, the attorney's fee only starts at 30%.
Then it goes down by 5% increments depending on how much money you receive.
Let's say you settle your case for $1,000,000.
Let's say you have only $10,000 in lawsuit expenses for experts, court transcripts, trial preparation.
That leaves $990,000.
The attorney's fee would be 30% of the first $250,000.
Then it would be 25% of the next $250,000.
Then it would be 20% of the next $500,000-$1,000,000.
In this example, the attorney's fee would be $75,000 & $62,500 & $98,000, for a total fee of $235,500.
That's only 23.78%.
If this were a car accident case, the attorney's fee would be much higher at $330,000, which is a third of the $990,000 recovered.
However, keep in mind that if your attorney only took cases from people who could afford to pay huge hourly fees, you'd never have been able to sue your careless doctor.
If you are able to pay an attorney hundreds or thousands of dollars per hour and are willing and able to finance your lawsuit, then you might consider that alternative method of hiring an attorney to represent you in your lawsuit against your doctor. That would mean that whatever money you are ultimately able to recover would be yours to keep in its' entirety.
You should know that lawyers who are paid only if you are successful have the same interests as you.
Your lawyer only gets his litigation expenses back if he's successful for you.
Your lawyer only gets a fee for all of his hard work, energy, efforts and time if he is successful in getting you money to compensate you for the harm you suffered.
The more he is able to recover for you, the greater his fee will be.
To learn even more about contingency fees here in New York, I invite you to watch the quick video below...