Other Side To Pay My Lawyer Fees When I Win A Lawsuit
When you win a lawsuit, the damages you recover can be used to pay your attorney’s fees. However, this is not always the case. Certain situations may allow you to collect court-awarded attorney’s fees, but this may depend on case type and state law.
The Other Side May Be Compelled to Pay Your Fees
Not every case will result in the other side paying your attorney’s fees. Generally, attorney’s fees can only be awarded to a party if it is part of the settled contract or mandated by statute. The ability to recover attorney’s fees is more common in cases like:
- Homeowners’ association disputes
- Landlord and tenant disputes involving rent
- Cases against an insurer
- Some types of family law
- Divorce cases
In these situations, a winning suit may also entitle you to compensation that covers your legal fees.
The Losing Party in a Case May Have to Pay the Prevailing Party’s Legal Fees
In some cases, you might be able to recoup payment for your attorney’s fees, which may deter frivolous litigation. For example, the Florida Statutes § 57.105 allows the prevailing party to recover attorney’s fees if the other party makes an unsupported claim or defense.
If a party knows they need to back up their claims with supporting evidence or they will be punished financially for not doing so, this may discourage them from making baseless allegations. In certain situations, this statute may even apply to the opposing attorney as well, forcing them to pay out themselves to cover a portion of your legal expenses.
Defendants Who Decline Offers of Judgment May Have to Pay if They Lose
An “offer of judgment” is another factor that can determine whether someone will be awarded attorney’s fees. This is an offer from one of the involved parties to the other in a case. If the party who receives the offer declines, they may end up paying for the opposing party’s legal fees if they lose.
Here is how it works: According to the Florida Statutes § 768.79, the offer has to be reasonable. If the plaintiff makes the offer, and the defendant declines it, the case moves forward.
If the defendant then loses the case, the amount of the judgment award matters. If the award is significantly greater than the offer the defendant declined, the defendant may be held responsible for paying the plaintiff’s attorney’s fees from the time they rejected the offer of judgment. This is because, by not accepting the plaintiff’s offer, the defendant made the case take longer, causing the plaintiff to pay out more in legal fees.
If they had accepted the earlier offer, they would have paid out less money, costing the opposing party less money and allowing the case to come to a conclusion sooner. This consequence may help prevent one party from needlessly dragging out proceedings.
You Can Hire a Personal Injury Attorney to Help You with Your Case
When you hire a personal injury attorney, their job is to help you recover damages in a claim or lawsuit. In some cases, this might not include your attorney’s fees. This is because personal injury lawyers often charge a contingency fee basis. This means that they only get paid if you win your case.
Still, you may want to discuss with your attorney about how they intend to receive payment and whether other involved parties might be held liable for paying your attorney’s fees.
Call the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one suffered an injury in an accident, a personal injury lawyer may be able to help you get the compensation that you need. If you have questions about pursuing damages and your legal options, call the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato at (954) 633-8270. We offer free consultations and can help you learn more about the types of compensation you may be able to receive in a personal injury case. Contact us today.