Contingent Fee Lawyers and Their Clients Settlement Expectations and Settlement Realities

Posted: 1 Dec 1998

Date Written: June 1997

Abstract

This paper draws upon observation in the offices of Wisconsin contingency fee practitioners and interviews with additional practitioners to describe how lawyers can influence their clients in the settlement process. It discusses techniques to control the clients' expectations about likely settlements, to prepare clients for the settlement negotiations, and to convince clients to accept a settlement offer. The author discusses factors limiting how lawyers actually employ these techniques, particularly the dependence of lawyers on satisfied clients for obtaining future clients; because of this need, most lawyers do not simply manipulate clients for the lawyers' own gain, but seek to steer the client in directions that produce a reasonably satisfactory result from the clients' perspective. (The paper also includes a discussion of the ambiguity of case valuation, and the failure of standard formula (e.g., "three times specials") to account for actual verdicts and settlements.)

Suggested Citation

Kritzer, Herbert M., Contingent Fee Lawyers and Their Clients Settlement Expectations and Settlement Realities (June 1997). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=140476

Herbert M. Kritzer (Contact Author)

University of Minnesota Law School ( email )

229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
626
PlumX Metrics