How Much Do Personal Injury Lawyers Make? A Helpful Guide

Written by
Rebecca Smith

Published
Apr 6, 2020

Apr 6, 2020 • by Rebecca Smith

How much do personal injury lawyers make?

You see the billboards, television advertisements, bench ads, and every other type of advertisement available. They must be making money, or they wouldn't be able to purchase so much advertising. We are here to give you an idea of how much money there is to be made in the personal injury profession.

Continue reading this article to learn more about personal injury lawyer salary and what to expect if you become a personal injury lawyer.

Let's Talk Money

When you get into any profession, you want to know how much you'll be compensated for your work. When you get into the personal injury field, you can make a lot of money, but there usually isn't a specific salary with the work. Most of the time, it is an eat what you kill type of business.

By an eat what you kill type of business, we mean you have to generate business, win the case, and then you'll get your paycheck. Most people filing personal injury cases don't have the money to pay attorneys upfront, and with these types of cases, it's often a no win no fee arrangement.

A no win no fee arrangement is exactly what it sounds like. If you don't win the case for your client and help them get a settlement, you get zero money for your efforts. On the other hand, if you win the case, most attorneys bring in a fee of 33% of the case.

If you help someone win a million-dollar case, you're looking at a nice payday.

How Do You Become a Personal Injury Lawyer?

If you like the sound of those high dollar paydays, you might be ready to jump in with both feet. But there is quite a road ahead of you before you can start practicing law in the personal injury field. Here are some things you'll need to do before you can begin your career.

Earn a Bachelor's Degree

Before you can do anything, you have to earn an undergraduate degree. To be a law school attendee, you need to have a bachelor's degree. Most people that want to become personal injury lawyers study history, English, social science, and similar things.

Mock trials are another good thing to participate in and allows you to work shoulder to shoulder with professional attorneys that can teach you a lot about what you need to do to get where you want to go.

Once you near the end of your bachelor's program, you need to take the Law School Admission Test, which is commonly referred to as the LSATs. This multiple-choice exam measures whether you have the aptitude for necessary skills lawyers use. It can be difficult to get into law schools, so it is important to do well on the LSATs as well as have a good grade point average.

Earn a Law Degree

After earning your bachelor's degree, you will usually need three years of additional schooling. Most states require you earn your law degree from a school that is approved by the American Bar Association. Some schools also require that you work as an intern at a personal injury law firm or with a judge that oversees personal injury lawsuits.

Pass the Bar Exam and the MRPE

Most states require you to pass the bar exam to practice law there. No matter which specialty law you choose to practice, the bar test is the same for everyone.

Many states also require you to pass the MRPE, which is the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination. This exam is to make sure you understand professional conduct as a lawyer.

Invest in Continuing Education As Needed

To maintain your bar status, you'll need to participate in continuing education. Many law schools offer continuing education, or you can look into education through the Center of Professional Development offered by the ABA. You shouldn't only look at continuing education as a necessary evil to maintain your bar status.

Continuing education will help you stay at the top of your game and keep up on the latest law changes and advancement in the field of law.

Build Your Experience

After you're finished with school, it's time to start building your experience. No one starts out as a professional, but you do need to understand it might be a little slow going when you're starting out. You have to develop people's trust in you and your abilities.

If you already have a strong network that you've been building while you were in school, working as an intern, and beyond -- that is immensely helpful.

There are several years of legal, courtroom, and practical experience necessary for your career advancement, but there are different paths you can take. You might opt to work as a junior lawyer to become a partner in the company. Or you might decide to go out on your own and open your own firm as a car accident attorney or focus on another type of personal injury law once you have enough experience.

How Much Do Personal Injury Lawyers Make? - Now You Know

Now you know the answer to, "How much do personal injury lawyers make?" and you can make a more informed decision on whether this is the career path for you or not. Understanding compensation is only one of the things that should play into whether this is the right business for you or not.

You may need more information about other parts of the legal field and other information. If you have further questions, read through other posts on our blog to get more help.