A form of institutional and interpersonal racism, people of color are far less likely to obtain legal representation due to these factors, according to Rights on Trial:
Their search for lawyers: inadequate information and networks, a lack of trust in the legal profession, and high cost (including fees for initial assessments). Payment for attorneys falls into three categories:
Contigency fee, paying the bulk only if a client prevails, and contingency fee plus, an upfront fee designed to screen serious clients or an hourly fee added to funds from the award if the case prevails.
Crucial factors to make economic sense: potential damages, which excludes low wage earners given their average annual earnings; potential to win, which often requires smoking gun evidence; minimal work in case of loss.
Hourly fee, guaranteeing payment regardless of outcome.
Crucial factors to make economic sense: clients understanding the unpredictability of recovery; clients with money. It’s a backup...
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