An Overview of Workers’ Comp Lawyer Fees
If you have been through a workplace accident and suffered an injury as a result, you may be considering hiring a Maryland workers' compensation lawyer. Their expertise is invaluable when navigating the claims process and allows you to focus on what is most important: your recovery. That said, legal representation does entail costs that you should be aware of ahead of time so that you are not surprised in the future.
Below we review Maryland's limits on how much a workers' compensation attorney can charge depending on the type of benefits awarded. We also list some of the other legal fees that an attorney may charge a client.
Maryland Workers' Compensation Attorney Fees
COMAR 14.09.04.03 outlines the fee limits that Maryland workers' compensation lawyers may charge. Each fee is dependent upon different criteria being met. Some of the most common examples are as follows:
Permanent Partial Disability Cases
For this claim type, an attorney fee cannot be more than 20 times Maryland's average weekly wage for the year of the injury. Furthermore, these cases' awards follow a formula to reach that 20%, which is up to 20% of the sums awarded for the first seventy five weeks of compensation; up to 15% of the sums awarded for the next one hundred and twenty weeks of compensation; and up to ten percent of the of the sums awarded for more than one hundred and ninety five weeks.
In situations where an injured worker must have a leg amputated or loses their vision, the Maryland Workers' Compensation Commission may approve an attorney's fee in an amount up to 5 percent of the compensation awarded, but not exceeding 6 times Maryland's average weekly wage.
Permanent Total Disability Cases
Attorneys may awarded up to twenty times the State average weekly wage for this case type.
Temporary Total and Temporary Partial Disability Cases
Attorneys may awarded up to ten times the amount of total benefits given to an injured worker.
Additional Legal Expenses to Know About
In addition to the attorney being awarded a portion of a claim's outcome, they may also charge for these items related to a case:
- While Maryland does not charge for the initial filing of a workers' compensation claim, there could be fees associated with court filings if an appeal is sought.
Costs for Obtaining Medical Records
- Whether directly obtaining a copy of medical records or needing to get them via subpoena, attorneys will bill these expenses to their clients.
Costs of Obtaining Expert Testimony
- In some workers' compensation cases, especially those that entail an appeal, a lawyer may call upon a medical doctor or other subject matter expert for their testimony. The costs associated with their preparation and time out of the office are charged to a client.