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Why EagleFee?

EagleFee exists for three reasons:

1)  It’s not fair to claimants to charge a standard percentage (contingent) fee no matter what the merits of their case;

2)  Fee splitting rewards unproductive lawyers at the expense of claimants and working lawyers; and,

3)  Fully qualified attorneys working in traditional defense firms are often excluded from representing claimants because of the danger of offending institutional clients.

Though each of these three rationals are explored in greater detail in the Blog section a quick explanation follows.

1)  Not all claims are created equal. Some claims are easier to prove than others.  Some claims involve much higher damages. Some claims require a lot more of a lawyer’s time.  It is unfair to charge all claimants the same percentage fee of any recovery regardless of its size or the effort required.  EagleFee establishes a market for each case in which informed lawyers can make offers of representation based upon their own evaluation of third party reports, experience and practice goals.  Claimants can evaluate these offers, communicate with lawyers whose qualifications and offers are of interest, and then select the attorney who best satisfies the claimant’s needs.

2) Fee-splitting is a vestige of the pre-internet period. It can only exist in a fragmented market in which claimants can not readily access multiple lawyers.  Fee-splitting  depends upon luck and  old-boy networking at the claimant’s expense; the unqualified lawyer is fortuitously selected by an uninformed client who ultimately pays 11% of any recovery for the privilege of being steered to another lawyer whose practice encompases contingent  fee work. That lawyers solicit and make a very good living from cases requiring fee-splitting only demonstrates the elasticity of the standard contingent fee. EagleFee allows claimants to solicit multiple offers of representation for a fee reflecting the merits of their case as determined by a market consisting of qualified, informed lawyers.

3)  All trial lawyers want high quality plaintiffs cases. A very high percentage of contingent fee cases settle before trial or suit.  Settlement eliminates risk both of loss and legal fees.  Lawyers working on a percentage basis may try to avoid trial; the longer a case goes on, the smaller their profit margin.  The opposite can be true for defense lawyers who are paid by the hour.  The longer a case goes on, win or lose, the more hours the defense lawyer can bill.  Not surprisingly, then, lawyers who work for what are typically viewed as “defense firms” are often some of the most experienced trial lawyers available. Politics and just plain good business sense constrains these lawyers from advertising their availability to represent claimants (for fear of alienating their institutional clients).  EagleFee creates a market in which any trial lawyer can participate.  “Defense” lawyers can review a claim, determine no conflict exists with an existing insurance client, then offer to represent claimants with solid claims.  EagleFee opens the market for plaintiffs’ work to all qualified lawyers.