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Changing your lawyer

Common Questions About Changing Your Lawyer

Changing your lawyer in a personal injury case is a relatively easy process.  Occasionally, relationships between lawyers and clients do not work out.  There could be a language barrier or other communication issues between their office and you.  You may find another lawyer you think suits you better.  Maybe you received a recommendation from a friend or family member who had a great result. 

There are many reasons you may decide that changing your lawyer is the right move for you.  When you have a case for catastrophic personal injuries you are putting your future in your lawyer’s hands.  It is of the utmost importance that your lawyer is someone you trust with your life.  If you do not have that, you should consider changing your lawyer.

YOUR RIGHT TO CHANGE YOUR LAWYER

Fortunately, you can change your lawyer at any time.   If you decide to change your attorney, it is wise to have your new lawyer lined up before you inform your old attorney.  When you sign up with a new attorney, they will contact your old lawyer.  They will have you prepare a “stop work” letter.  This will ask your old attorneys to cease all work on your case.  They will submit that along with a “consent to change” attorney.  This document tells the court that you have new attorneys who are representing you in your case.

Once they complete this paperwork, your old attorney transfers over your case file to your new attorney.  Usually, this process only takes a week or two.  If your old attorney does not cooperate, your new attorney can ask the court to direct your old attorneys transfer your file.  Don’t worry: this does not happen that often.

HOW DOES A CHANGE AFFECT WHAT I PAY?

Personal injury lawyers in New York charge their clients on a contingent fee basis.  Generally speaking this means the lawyers take one-third or 33.33% of the amount you recover at settlement or trial.  If you do not recover in your case, you owe your lawyer nothing.

Changing your lawyer does not change this fee structure.  You will never pay more than one-third of your total recovery.  That one-third attorneys fee will be split between all of the lawyers that handled your case. You do not need to worry about which attorney gets which amount.  All the attorneys involved in your case, will work out the split of the one-third attorneys fee amongst themselves.

YOUR LAWYER WORKS FOR YOU

As the client, you are in charge of your case.  You are the boss.  Your lawyer works for you.  At the end of the day you need to find the lawyer you are most comfortable with.  You need to find a lawyer who will protect your rights and fight for you and your family.  If you are interested in changing your lawyer, contact The Platta Law Firm today.

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