The Law Offices of Charles J. Brocato is a personal injury law firm conveniently located to serve Pierce and Kitsap counties with offices in Port Orchard, Tacoma and Gig Harbor. Charles Brocato is an experienced personal injury attorney who has been successfully representing injured victims for over 33 years. Mr. Brocato is an "eagle" member of the Washington State Trial Lawyers Association and a member of both the Washington and California State Bar Associations. He has earned a "very high" rating from the Martindale-Hubbell law directory. Martindale -Hubbell is the most respected and impartial source of information about lawyers in the United States, Canada, and world-wide. Mr. Brocato is also a Superior Court Judge Pro Tem in Pierce county.
Contingency Experienced personal injury attorney, successfully representing injury victims for over 33 years.
The Law Offices of Charles J. Brocato accepts most personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. The contingent fee is the most common form of payment arrangement for plaintiffs needing representation in personal injury litigation. Instead of billing on an hourly basis, a contingency fee means we are entitled to a percentage of the settlement or trial award, usually one-third. If you do not receive any compensation for damages, our firm is entitled to nothing. The contingent fee is perhaps the one device in law that gives injured people, no matter what their financial means, an even break in the courtroom against giant corporations and insurance companies. Were it not for the contingent fee, people of the middle class or low economic means would not be able to have their day in court, a constitutional right which corporations and insurance companies fight hard to eliminate.
The "contingent" aspect or the fee means that if there is no recovery, there is no attorney fee owed. There are a number of advantages to this type of arrangement, the most obvious or which is the absence of a risk of owing our firm a fee when there has been no recovery. Another important advantage is the security the client should feel knowing we have the same incentive as that of the client. The fact we are willing to handle a client's case on a contingent fee basis is a reflection of the confidence in our ability to obtain a recovery in the case.
The percentage to be charged on a contingent fee case, to a large extent, depends on the type of case. In automobile accident cases a contingent fee of one-third (1/3) of the recovery is common. Medical and Legal malpractice cases and other more complex cases often are handled on a higher percentage basis, because they frequently consume substantially greater amounts of attorney time and resources. Contingency fees are paid at the conclusion of a case, and only if there is a recovery.
PAYMENT OF COSTS
In connection with handling your case, it is virtually certain that we will expend funds on your behalf in order to position the case for settlement and/or trial. Expenses run from fees to copy medical records, fees to file a lawsuit, transcript fees, court reporter fees, expert witness fees, and many others. In complex cases, out of pocket costs to prepare the case for trial can run into tens of thousands of dollars. In most cases, we will advance all fees for you so as to enable you to continue with your case through trial.
Statute of Limitations
A law establishing the time limit within which a lawsuit must be brought is called a statute of limitation. Different types of cases have different statutes of limitation. Knowing which statute of limitation applies is critical, since if a lawsuit is not brought within the time limit that applies to the case, the right to sue and recover damages is forever lost. The statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit in Washington State is 3 years for most cases but there are exceptions. It is critical that you contact an attorney immediately after suffering an injury so that the appropriate statute of limitations can be determined.
Measuring the statute of limitations for a particular situation can be a complex issue. The time usually begins to run at the time the injury occurs, however, if a person suffers a hidden injury, the discovery rule may apply. Under the discovery rule, the time begins to run from when the person who is injured knew, or by the exercise of reasonable diligence should have known, that he or she was injured.
Special rules apply in measuring the statute of limitations when a child is injured, in which case the time does not begin to run for an injury until the child reaches 18 years of age. These special rules may also apply to people who are mentally impaired or who leave the state for particular kinds of reasons such as for military service.
If you or a loved one is a victim of personal injuries call now at (253)851-9164 or e-mail. Don't delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.