Season’s Greetings! The holidays are clearly upon us… and that means more tourists and traffic. This increase in people results in more Accidents and DUI’s. It is hard for an Accident or DUI lawyer (and victim) to find a good doctor (or lawyer), that has the time to treat (represent) the client…let alone answer the phone during this time period. Many professionals are on vacation during the holiday season.
Either the doctors/lawyers are on vacation or they are over booked and can’t see new patients for weeks. During the holidays many of these medical providers will be out of the office from Thursdays and will not return until Tuesday.
Many foolish/lazy lawyers don’t respond to their calls until the next week, thus leaving victims at a lost to find medical or legal representation. Unfortunately, waiting two weeks to see a doctor hurts your case…a lot. The insurance company later argues “if the victim was really injured they would have treated at the ER, or Urgent Care Centers and not waited days or weeks to see a doctor.”
Victims get frustrated when they cannot find a doctor or lawyer and often think they will be ok in a day or two. Even worse many mistakenly talk to the insurance adjuster. They are unknowingly damaging their case to the point that many lawyers will not accept their case. It is not just what they tell the insurance company but what the adjuster “THOUGHT” they heard the victim explain. A lawyer will never know what the client told the insurance company until it is to late in the middle of trial. I explained this in a previous article “Mr. Gribow, Why Won’t You Accept My Accident Case?” (if you would like a copy please contact me)
Accident victims are often afraid of costs and thus don’t take an ambulance or see a doctor right after the accident. They don’t realize the defendant’s insurance company will pay for these cost. Most drivers have medical payments coverage or Health Insurance that will also cover these costs.
It’s a shame that many clients don’t know their automobile policy limits. It is important to know this information because the other driver may not have insurance. If so we present an Uninsured Motorist (UM) claim against our clients own policy…if s/he had UM coverage.
A similar scenario is when the defendant driver has a minimum policy but the injuries are more serious. Then we look to our clients Underinsured Auto Provision. Thus we might collect $15,000 from the at fault driver’s policy and then go after the underinsured portion of our drivers $100,000 policy… for instance. Thus we would get $15,000 from the defendant and $85,000 from our client’s policy.
Medical providers are concerned about getting paid as are hospitals and urgent care facilities. If the injured party cannot find their policies before they meet with us, they often pay using a credit card. Whereas, we try to get medical treatment on a lien.
Victims should use their cell to take pictures of their injuries/cars and take video recordings of witnesses statements. In addition they should take pictures of the other driver’s insurance policy and license.
A victim should also see a medical provider they have not seen before. This is because their current medical providers have records that document prior injuries, alcohol or drugs issues, psych referrals, SDT’s, abortions etc. Though these records may have nothing to do with the accident, many jurors will incorrectly think less of the victim on account of one of these issues.
I instruct my clients to not post anything on social media following the accident because we don’t want the insurance company to find client’s posts of their playing tennis, golf, running in a marathon etc. Clients complain they can’t do anything because of the amount of pain they are encountering yet post pix of playing sports.
Because of the difficulty in getting medical treatment and the mistakes and challenges listed herein, it is harder to maximize the value of an accident case during the holidays. Unfortunately these cases often result in smaller settlements. Thus many lawyers are reluctant to accept these cases.
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“DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE OR TEXT AND GET A DUI OR ACCIDENT. CALL A TAXI, LYFT OR UBER. THEY ARE A LOT CHEAPER THAN CALLING ME”. SO DRIVE SOBER OR GET PULLED OVER.