Do Personal Injury Lawyers Get Paid Before The Medical Bills?

Hi. I’m John Medler, personal injury lawyer at The Medler Law Firm – Personal Injury & Accident Attorneys. Today I’d like to talk to you about the question of whether the attorney gets paid first or after the payment of the medical bills. Here’s a quick example. Let’s say the personal injury lawyer gets you a settlement of $100,000. Let’s say that the client has a $10,000 hospital lien hanging out there. Assume that the lawyer has a 40% contract with their client. One way to calculate the attorney’s fee would be to take the $10,000 hospital bill off the 100, leaving $90,000, and then the attorneys 40% contract would be $36,000. The other way to do it would be to have the attorney’s fee to go straight off the top. Take the hundred thousand dollars, 40% of that would be $40,000 for the attorney, and then the medical bill was paid. Which one is it?

It really depends on what is specifically written in your retainer agreement with your lawyer, but in most cases the attorney agreement will provide that the attorney’s fee is taken off the top. So in our example, out of the $100,000, the attorney would get 40,000 leaving you 60 and then you’d be responsible for your own hospital bill. If you have any other questions about hospital bills and how settlements are paid, check out our website, at or call our Orange County personal injury lawyer for a free consultation here at The Medler Law Firm – Personal Injury & Accident Attorneys.