What Percentage Do Car Accident Lawyers Take?

What Percentage Do Car Accident Lawyers Take?Many New York residents worry about how to pay for an attorney after a car accident. Some receive word-of-mouth information about how auto accident attorneys don’t charge fees. Car accident attorneys do, indeed, charge fees, but most work on a contingency fee basis. The contingency fee arrangement is helpful for any client who is often already dealing with physical and financial stress after a serious accident occurs.

Complicated accident cases can take time to resolve, and attorneys want clients to focus on healing. Allowing time for a case to unfold and determining the amount of recoverable damages is a process. This is why up-front payment is not the norm for most car accident firms. At Cellino Law, you don’t pay fees until you win your case. Your health and well-being are the priority, and we want you to get the proper care first and foremost.

What Is a Contingency Fee Arrangement?

A contingency or “contingent” fee arrangement is a legal agreement that allows you to work with an attorney without the requirement of paying upfront, out-of-pocket fees. This is often the fee agreement used in civil cases when a recovery is likely to be reached as the final outcome of a case. Most car accident attorneys accept this type of payment agreement because they determine the worth of a case before accepting it. An attorney handles your case when the recovery value is fair based on the facts of your case, and it allows you to meet your payment obligations.

Most New York attorneys take a percentage, which is typically 33.3% (one-third) of the amount you are awarded. Some firms take up to 40%, but that is usually under specific circumstances. However, it is up to each firm to decide its fee structure and how it works for its clients. We encourage you to ask about fees when meeting with your attorney, so you have a clear idea of how payment works.

Why Should You Check a Law Firm’s Website?

An auto accident law firm offers a wealth of information on its website. It usually provides easy-to-follow information about consultations, fees, availability, and commitments made to clients who use its services. At Cellino Law, we want the process of contacting us and learning about our services to be an easy and comfortable endeavor. Accident victims are already managing a lot of stress, and our team streamlines the process of case reviews and contract signings. It is essential that you feel confident about the representation of your claim.

Are There Additional Costs When You Hire a Car Accident Lawyer?

Other expenses are incurred when working with an attorney. The thing to understand is that experienced attorneys know what is necessary to build a solid case on your behalf. While you may have other costs associated with your case, your lawyer informs you of these details and is always mindful of what is at stake in terms of your damage recovery. These are services that require additional charges:

  • Investigative services
  • Expert witness assistance
  • Deposition fees
  • Accident reconstruction and analysis
  • Legal support staff costs
  • Mediation
  • Filing fees
  • Court costs (including transcript copy fees)
  • Report copies (police, medical records and bills)

There are routine costs associated with all cases. Cost related to expert input may not be necessary in your particular case. The more complicated a case is, the higher the likelihood of bringing in outside assistance to substantiate your claim.

What Factors Affect Your Settlement Award in a Car Accident Case?

The amount of damages you can recover after a car accident largely depends on the particular circumstances, especially the injuries and overall losses you’ve suffered. An attorney will calculate your losses and determine what is a fair recovery. These are some essential factors that are important when an attorney decides to represent a client.

Provable Negligence

A critical aspect of a personal injury case is determining negligence on the part of a defendant. These four elements must be present to bring a personal injury lawsuit:

  • The defendant owed a duty of care.
  • The defendant breached the duty of care.
  • The plaintiff (you) was injured and incurred financial losses.
  • The defendant’s breach caused your injuries.

Without proof of these elements, there is no legal cause to seek damages.

Fault Determination

Fault can be a tricky issue in any accident case. This is why investigating an accident is a critical piece of what lawyers do for clients. Your attorney builds your strong case and holds the negligent driver accountable. If you are partially at fault in an accident, your attorney protects your rights, so you don’t lose out on your right to a recovery.

New York follows the pure contributory negligence system. As a plaintiff, you can recover damages even if you are mostly responsible for an accident. The amount of damages you recover is reduced by your percentage of fault in the accident.

Recoverable Damages

Damages in injury cases fall under two primary categories: economic and non-economic. Economic damages include monetary losses, such as:

  • Medical expenses (past and future)
  • Lost wages (past and future)
  • Future earnings losses
  • Property damage (repair or replacement)

Non-economic damages include non-monetary losses, such as:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional or mental distress
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Enjoyment of life losses

These are intangible losses that affect your quality of life after an accident. These non-economic damages are important considerations for injured and traumatized persons.

Client Resolve

Another important issue in a personal injury case that isn’t always discussed is the need for client perseverance. The more complicated a case is the longer it can take to reach a resolution. This can be stressful for individuals who want to move on after an accident. Trusting the counsel of your attorney is critical to getting the best outcome.

What If You Don’t Win Your Case?

If your case is taken by an attorney based on a contingent fee agreement, you do not pay fees unless your case is settled or won. Attorneys are selective about the claims they handle because the point is to make a fair recovery for clients and cover their own time and efforts representing cases. At your initial review, we evaluate the evidence and let you know whether you have a viable case.

Let’s Get Started on Your Case Today

According to the latest data provided in November 2022, in New York City alone, there were 2,862 injuries of drivers and passengers from vehicle collisions. New York is a bustling state with large urban areas that increase your chances of being involved in a car accident at some point. Cellino Law is a trusted law firm with a proven record of getting our clients the best possible compensation after car accident injuries disrupt their lives.

Most car accident victims are immediately faced with financial stress when medical expenses, vehicle repairs, and lost wages turn their lives upside down. Our firm steps in to help ease that burden and provide you with skilled legal representation at the time you need it most. We offer a free case review, so you know right away where your case stands. If you become our client, there are no upfront fees, and you don’t pay unless you win. We are available 24/7 to talk with you, so make the call and let us help you today.



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  • This letter is to thank Ms. Diane D’Andrea, assistant to Mr. George Gridelli, Attny for all the hard work, dedication, and attentiveness she showed during the representation of my case. She was always cheerful and ready to help in whatever way she could. All messages left for Mr. Gridelli were always relayed and Mr. Gridelli always promptly returned our calls. She was a very competent assistant. Cellino Law has proven to be a model of what legal representation should be. Throughout the 6 ½ years of this case, I have heard many horror stories from people with “bad lawyer stories.” We consider ourselves to be very lucky to have chosen Cellino Law and will always recommend you to those looking for good, honest representation with a personal touch.


  • We'd like to thank you for all the assistance and time you spent on our case. Your professionalism and honesty will always be appreciated. The staff was always courteous and we were always impressed with your accountability. Your passion and dedication will never be forgotten, nor will you.


  • Joe and I just wanted to send you this note thanking you for the professional way you handled our lawsuit. Your kindness was extremely appreciated in a very difficult time. When we found out the people that caused the accident had no insurance, we thought our chances of receiving any settlement was nonexistent. Once we met with you and released you were able to help us our minds were put at ease. Your aggressive manner of handling the case exceeded our expectations. Please feel free to use us as a reference. Thank you so much and best wishes,

    Danielle and Joe

  • Now that reality has set in, I want to thank you for all your work and assistance in obtaining my settlement for the pelvic mesh. This money will make my life so much easier in the future. Medicare just isn't sufficient. I know that I will have enough to live on. I truly appreciate of your efforts. Thank you!


  • I just want to let you know that I did receive my settlement check. More importantly, I want to thank you again for all you did for both me and my family. I could not be more pleased with my experience at Cellino Law. From the moment I first spoke with you I felt comfortable - you took a sincere interest in my case, clearly explained the process and effected a quick settlement. From this day forward, when someone asks if I can recommend a good lawyer I will, without hesitation, say "Cellino Law". Thanks again.


  • I highly recommend Cellino Law to anyone involved in a car crash. I worked with Michael Lovecchio, and had a wonderful experience given the circumstances. He was very attentive, and got the best possible outcome I could have wanted.