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Edward Montoya’s FAQs.

Will attorneys take a litigation case on contingency fee basis?

There are some cases that can be taken on a contingency fee basis and others that cannot. For example, under the rules governing attorney conduct, a lawyer cannot take a family related matter (divorce, child custody, etc.) on a contingency fee basis.  State and ethical rules do allow attorneys and clients to enter into a percentage fee agreement (contingency fee agreement) based on the amount recovered in air disasters, personal injury matters, wrongful death claims, product liability actions, and other personal injury based cases.  Many commercial disputes may be taken on a hourly or flat fee/contingency fee mix basis such as stock broker negligence and investment class action cases.

How long will its take to resolve my case?

The time varies depending on whether the case is resolved in the pre-litigation stage, meaning before a lawsuit is filed, during litigation or at trial.  Many cases are resolved at the pre-suit stage, especially when the issues are relatively clear.  If parties have issues with aspects of the case, a lawsuit will most likely be filed and the case enters "litigation" phase. If litigated in a federal court, for example, federal judges provide the parties with a schedule, which give the parties an idea of how long each phase (discovery, mediation or trial, for example) will take and when the case will be tried before a jurty.   In many state court actions, judges do not provide the parties with a litigation schedule to allow them time to properly develop their cases.  In essence, based on our experience, cases can be resolved in months or years, depending on the type of case, court where it is filed, and the issues in controversy.