Contingency Cases

Typically I represent clients on a fee basis, however, in certain circumstances a contingency representation may be appropriate. Such representation is premised on payment to me of a percentage of whatever recovery may be made in the case or dispute on behalf of the client. The typical contingency representation is for 33% of the value of a settlement, and 40% of a recovery through a trial. These terms are subject to negotiation. Likewise, the expenses incurred in representation need also to be addressed to determine which party would bear the expenses in a contingency matter.

In a contingency representation, no fee or expense is owed unless the client agrees to the specific terms. The terms are subject to negotiation that results in a contract between the attorney and the client. In addition to the fee percentage and expense payment, the contract must specifically address the terms upon which an attorney may terminate his representation, or the client may terminate the attorney’s representation. Such termination is of concern, because the attorney until a resolution is working without compensation. To be terminated at will exposes the attorney to doing work without any compensation. I would require there be an hourly compensation paid in the event a termination is without cause. If there is a termination for cause, then compensation for representation would be premised upon the more specific agreement between the parties.