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The Utah Accident Book "The Essential Guide to Accident Cases in Utah"
Can I Borrow Money On My Case?
If you have a “larger” personal injury case, you can usually get what is called an “advance” on your case. This is usually easier to arrange in auto accident case because issues of liability and damages tend to be more straight forward. You should keep in mind, however, that lawyers are never allowed to loan money. This is against the ethical rules that lawyers are required to follow in Utah (they are also the same in most states). There are a number of companies, however, that will do this. The interest rates are quite high, and so going into it, you will want to be sure that this is what you want to do. The companies all have their own rates and payback terms, so you will want to check with them. And they will only do advances if you have an attorney, since the attorney has to pledge to pay back the company as part of the settlement of the client’s case. As an example, if a client wanted to get an advance of $1,500 with an advance company we have used in the past, they would owe the company $2,100 up to six months after the advance is given. While the interest is high, it is much less than that charged by some of the pay day lenders.
And so, you need to carefully consider whether the benefits justify the high interest paid. In some circumstances, they just may. For example, I have had clients reclaim vehicles that had been repossessed because the client was out of work and couldn’t make payments. They have been able to make rent or mortgage payments. They have been able to put down payments on expensive medical treatments the doctor is recommending.
They have been able to buy food for their family, etc. I have even used an advance to get my client out of jail (he had warrants for some unpaid traffic tickets) so he could attend his physical therapy sessions. Most important in my mind is that these advances allow an attorney additional time to negotiate or litigate a case to get fair compensation for the client, without a client giving in because of intense financial pressure.
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