Utilising the services of a lawyer to pursue compensation can be both costly and time-consuming. In some instances a client might not be able to immediately pay these costs. This is why a number of lawyers offer a "no win, no fee" service, which is also known as a contingency fee (when the lawyer's fee is contingent on their ability to obtain compensation for you). There are many benefits to this no win, no fee system, but not all pricing systems are the same in this area. So before you decide to hire lawyers in a no win, no fee capacity, there are a few things you need to think about.

What Percentage of the Funds Will Go to the Lawyer?

There is no industry standard for this, and some lawyers will require a larger percentage of the final awarded funds than others. The maximum amount of the awarded funds that a lawyer can claim is 50%, although some will claim less. This percentage needs to be agreed upon prior to the commencement of any legal action.

Are You Liable for Any Additional Costs?

Are there any court fees or any related costs that need to be paid and will this affect the final amount? You need to query this before you begin with the legal action, and it will be vary depending on the nature of the case and the state or territory where the case is heard.

Does the Lawyer Charge an Uplift Fee?

The uplift fee is an occasional aspect of a no win, no fee agreement between you and your lawyer. It can be applied in the event of a particularly complex case that will take an extended period of time to be finalised. Not all lawyers will charge an uplift fee, but you will need to find out whether one is to be applied to your case. This means that the lawyer can claim an additional percentage of any awarded funds, above the 50% that they can claim without the uplift fee. If an uplift fee is to be applied, find out exactly what percentage it will be. This might cause you to reconsider using the services of a particular lawyer.

What Is the Case Is Lost?

If the case is lost, the no win, no fee agreement only applies to the fees that would have been charged by your lawyer. You might be liable for the legal costs incurred by the other party. There is no way of knowing exactly how much this will be, but your lawyer should be able to give you an approximate idea. The no win, no fee model minimises your financial risk, but it doesn't avoid risk altogether.

While this model allows those who might not be able to afford a lawyer the opportunity to pursue a legitimate claim, there are a few important things to think about first. For more information about the process and your options, contact a lawyer.