If you have been injured you need an attorney to represent you and protect your legal rights. It is sad but true: Insurance Companies are rarely, if ever, interested in treating victims in a fair manner but instead require litigation or at least an attorney representing a victim before they will be reasonable.
Most personal injury cases are handled on a "contingency" basis. That means you only pay an attorney fee if the attorney is successful. The fee is usually based on a percentage of the recovery. A sliding scale of 33 to 40 percent is common although attorneys will occasionally charge less if the case settles without any meaningful work or up to 50 percent if an appeal is necessary. Each attorney has their own rates and you may wish to inquire about this before retaining an attorney.
Because personal injury attorneys do rely on other attorneys to send them work (and there can be large awards in certain cases) it is common for personal injury lawyers to pay a referral fee to a referring attorney. That referral fee is paid by the personal injury attorney and comes out of his or her share of the recovery--it does not increase the total attorney fee paid in any manner.
While David E. Shell does not personally handle Personal Injury cases due to limited experience in this area and a full/busy practice in other areas, he will gladly furnish names of recommended attorneys. You should keep in mind that each of these attorneys will pay a referral fee if they are successful in the case. While the attorney-client relationship is between the client and the personal injury attorney, if you experience problems with the personal injury attorney (such as a failure to communicate or return your calls or letters or matters of a similar nature), David E. Shell is available to help work out such problems and can often obtain direct access to the personal injury attorney and answers to questions. While we try to send injured persons only to responsible/effective personal injury attorneys, some attorneys do not return telephone calls or communicate in the manner in which they should. Often this is simply a result of time pressures and deadlines and does not reflect poor legal representation, just poor client communication skills. You are of course, legally entitled to change attorneys at any time but past attorneys are entitled to a claim on proceeds for work they have actually performed.