Costs In An Attorney Fee Contract

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What does it mean when the attorney says I must pay “costs”?

Costs are typically any expense the attorney incurs while representing you. These expenses vary depending on the type of the case and the location of the witnesses. However, examples of these costs are as follows: photocopying, travel expenses, court reporter expenses, expert witness fees, postage, long distance telephone charges, legal research charges, parking, costs billed by medical provider, insurance company or other entity for copies of medical reports and/or billing statements.

In most contingency fee cases, the attorney agrees to advance payment for these costs, and the client remains responsible for reimbursement of said costs out of client’s share of the proceed of any recovery obtained, whether by settlement or jury verdict. Any balance due and owing by client for costs advanced by attorney shall be deducted by attorney out of client’s share of the proceeds of said recovery.

In cases where an attorney is retained on an hourly basis, attorneys advance payment of these costs. The client then reimburses attorneys by payment of a monthly billing statement which includes attorneys fees and costs for the monthly billing period.