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WHAT IS EAGLEFEE ?

EagleFee is like an electronic bulletin board where people can advertise their legal claims and lawyers can offer to represent them.  Ever see those message boards in grocery stores where people with puppies or trucks to sell tack up pictures or descriptions with their phone numbers? Well, EagleFee is an electronic form of those bulletin boards. People who have been injured post descriptions of their claims online for lawyers to review.  Lawyers interested in the claim then offer representation. Because their are no middle men, lawyers can offer their services at a lower cost. Like that supermarket bulletin board, people posting on EagleFee pay nothing.

 

HOW DOES EAGLFEE WORK?

Easy. Claimants post documents describing their claim on EagleFee.  Lawyers read these documents and decide whether they want to offer representation to the claimant. Interested lawyers pay a low fee to send an offer to a claimant.  Claimants review these offers and decide which lawyers to contact.

 

WAIT A MINUTE, WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?

All serious injury cases generate a paper trail.  Police file accident reports.  Emergency Rooms and hospitals create treatment summaries and bills.  Body shops write estimates. Government agencies,  like OSHA,  investigate significant industrial accidents and write reports.  Employers or their insurance companies write reports.  The fact is,  when people get hurt reports get written that describe the accident and the injuries suffered.

 

WHY CAN’T I JUST DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPENED?

Three reasons really. First, a lot of the time people who get injured aren’t in the best position to describe exactly what happened to them.  Think about it, if you saw the injury coming, you probably wouldn’t have gotten hurt.  Also, after being hurt you probably had better things to do than try to figure out exactly what happened.  Second,  You don’t want to commit yourself to a set of facts before talking to a lawyer.  When you talk to your lawyer about a legal case your conversations are private .  This means that people on the other side of the case can’t find out what you talked about. When you have a legal case it’s important to keep some information private.  One of the things a lawyer does is help you say things in a way that helps your case. There’s a reason lawyers are called mouthpieces. Reports written by other people aren’t your statement. If someone else’s report contains a mistake it’s easier for your lawyer to deal with than if you make the mistake yourself.  Finally, lawyers analyzing your case will want to see reports prepared by neutral observers before making an offer to represent you.  Lawyers need to know what other people, often professionals,  are saying about your claim in order to decide how difficult your case will be to win.

 

YEAH, BUT WHAT IF I KNOW A REPORT IS WRONG?

That’s OK.  Chances are the other side is going to get these reports as part of the claims process.  This means that if a mistakes been made your lawyer is going to have to explain it anyway.  When you get to the point of  talking to a lawyer you should point the mistake out so it can be dealt with.

 

OK, BUT AREN’T MY MEDICAL REPORTS PRIVATE?

Sure, but not if you plan to bring a claim for an injury. When you make a legal claim for an injury, your medical history becomes an issue and the other side is entitled to look at it and ask questions about it.  This means, with few exceptions, your opponent will be provided with your medical records.

 

WOULDN’T IT JUST BE EASIER TO PICK A LAWYER OUT OF THE PHONE BOOK?

Maybe, maybe not. If you spend the time to meet with a lawyer who decides not to take your case, you’ve wasted a lot of energy. More important, unless you market your claim, you’ve gotta pay what the lawyer charges without knowing what other lawyers would charge you. Most lawyers charge a standard percentage fee of any money an accident claim generates. This means you’ll probably get charged the same percentage amount whether you have an easy case or one that takes the lawyer a long time to finish. Unless you create a market for your case by offering it to a lot of different lawyers there is no reason for any lawyer to represent you for less than the standard fee. Competition means you get the fairest fee possible.

 

BUT I ALREADY KNOW A LAWYER WHO HELPED ME BUY MY HOUSE WHY NOT CALL HIM?

Two reasons.  Again, unless there is a competitive market for your claim you’ll probably just get charged the standard rate.  Second, while the house lawyer may have plenty of experience with property sales, that doesn’t mean he knows how to handle an accident claim.

 

BUT CAN’T THE LAWYER I KNOW TELL ME WHAT LAWYER TO GO TO?

Sure, for a price. One of the reasons the “standard fee” exists is that it includes what’s called a referral fee. Historically, the standard fee was around one-third of any money a claim brought in.  Where one lawyer sends or refers a claim to another lawyer,  they split the fee. Generally, the referring lawyer gets about 1/3rd of the fee. Say you go to your real estate lawyer who sends you to an injury lawyer and your claim is settled for $100,000.  Typically, the legal fee would be $ 33,000.  The real estate lawyer would get $11,000 for sending you to the injury lawyer who would keep $ 22,000.

 

SO IF I GO DIRECTLY TO AN INJURY LAWYER I WON’T HAVE TO PAY FOR TWO LAWYERS, RIGHT? 

Wrong. The standard fee typically remains the same whether or not a referring lawyer is involved. In order for lawyers to truthfully say you aren’t getting charged more for involving a referring lawyer, the standard fee is charged regardless of whether the injury lawyer has to split the fee or not.

 

OK, HOW ABOUT IF I GO TO AN INJURY LAWYER AND SAY I KNOW ABOUT REFERRAL FEES AND I’LL ONLY PAY 22%?

Good luck. Chances are the injury lawyer will tell you the standard fee is what his office charges and he doesn’t cut fees.  You might be told that fee splitting doesn’t cost you any more since the lawyer pays it out of his share of a settlement and that referral fees are paid so that other lawyers will send more cases in the future.  Maybe you’ll be lucky and the lawyer will say: “Well, your case isn’t the type I’d normally accept from a referring lawyer but I can reduce my fee by 5%.” But then wouldn’t you wonder what the lawyer right down the street would charge if given the opportunity to compete for your case? Again, without a market for your case you won’t get the most competitive offer.

 

WAIT A MINUTE, ARE YOU SAYING THERE ARE  REASONS,  OTHER THAN REFERRAL FEES,  A LAWYER MIGHT CHARGE LESS THAN THE STANDARD FEE FOR MY CASE?

Absolutely.  Every legal claim is different.  The fee charged should be to. If you’ve got an easy case worth a lot of money you should pay less than the guy whose claim is more difficult or worth less.

 

I’M NO LAWYER, HOW DO I KNOW IF I’VE GOTTA GOOD CASE?

That’s the beauty of EagleFee, you don’t have to.  Lawyers with experience evaluate your case and figure out its worth. By creating a market for your case,  lawyers who want to represent you make competitive offers to represent you.  Easy cases worth a lot of money, the kind every lawyer wants, will attract lawyers willing to represent you for less than the standard fee.

 

BUT WHAT IF I’VE HEARD OF A LAWYER I’D LIKE TO HIRE?

Great, use EagleFee’s special feature: Invite a Lawyer to send an e-mail invitation to the lawyer to review your case.  This is the best of both worlds. Invite a Lawyer allows you to contact specific lawyers you want to look at your claim while still taking advantage of EagleFee’s market-based system.  You can invite up to five lawyers to review your case.  Best of all, using Invite a Lawyer doesn’t prevent other lawyers from reviewing your case. The lawyers you invite won’t know which, or how many, lawyers you have reached out to.  Claimants are encouraged to use Invite a Lawyer to get the representation they want. Remember that grocery store bulletin board?  Invite a Lawyer is like putting a copy of your flyer in the mailboxes of the lawyers you invite at the same time you post it on the board – a win/win situation!

 

 

HOW DO I KNOW WHICH LAWYER TO PICK?

Research.  No matter how you pick a lawyer,  it’s up to you to investigate and decide who you want to hire. The Internet is a wonderful tool to find out about lawyers. Search the lawyer and law firm.   Always check with your state bar association to make sure a lawyer is in good standing. A lot of useful information to help you decide can be found through: www.eaglefee.com/faq/state-by-state-list-of-useful-sites-for-accident-victims/

 

 

FOR MORE IN-DEPTH DISCUSSIONS ABOUT EAGLEFEE, READ FURTHER IN THE FAQ OR BLOG SECTIONS 

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