WILL YOU BE IN GOOD HANDS WITH YOUR INSURANCE CO, AND WILL YOUR FRIENDLY NEIGHBOR GIVE YOU A PIECE OF THE ROCK?
OF COURSE NOT! THEY ARE IN THE BUSINESS OF PAYING THEIR CLAIMANTS AS LITTLE AS POSSIBLE FOR ALL CLAIMS. HOWEVER, YOU STILL MAY NOT NEED A LAWYER. NOT EVERY ACCIDENT WARRANTS A LAWYER. SOME CASES CAN BE SETTLED ON YOUR OWN. THE CHANCES ARE YOU WILL NOT COLLECT AS MUCH MONEY AS YOU WOULD WITH A LAWYER. HOWEVER, BEFORE YOU TALK TO THE INSURANCE ADJUSTER OR HIRE AN ATTORNEY OR SIGN ANY FORMS, CALL FOR A FREE PERSONAL CONSULTATION AND WE’LL TALK ABOUT HOW ALL OF THAT WORKS.
My law firm’s philosophy, is that THOUGH YOU MAY NOT NEED A LAWYER, IT IS ALSO TRUE THAT A LAWYER MAY NOT WANT YOUR CASE. When you’ve been rear ended, and both drivers have little property damage along with a minimum policy, then that may be more than sufficient to cover the value of your case. We don’t want a case where we just settle it without having to do anything more than send in a letter in the first few weeks for the policy limits.
Insurance industry marketing tries to convince the general public that the insurance company is on their side. They are on your side as long as you accept the low amount they want to pay to resolve your claim. Insurance companies exist to make money. So anything they tell you must be considered against that backdrop. Their interest is not aligned with the interest of the injured.
You should only settle your personal injury case after receiving a free consultation from a personal injury attorney. You must understand that You are NEVER in Good Hands and Your Friendly Neighbor NEVER Give You a Piece of the Rock, when you try to settle without a lawyer.
Not every case has enough value for a lawyer to accept on a contingency. A lawyer won’t accept a case when s/he initially sees problems….such as no medical treatment, waiting too long to contact a lawyer, no visible property damage etc. Most clients focus on the injury and not on any of the following harmful factors that can cause me to reject a case: 1) admitting liability, 2) no immediate medical treatment, 3) questionable liability, 4) low property damage, 5) prior accidents, 6) no insurance, 7) delay in calling a lawyer, 8) social media showing you playing sports, while complaining of injuries and 9) client talking to the adjuster.
Whether you later decide to hire a lawyer or not you should do follow these TIPS:
- STOP and take pictures with your cell phone of both cars, injuries, license and insurance info; 2. Call police: 3. DON’T TALK to anyone. It’s not what you say but what the other party THOUGHT THEY HEARD YOU SAY. In addition TAKE DOWN YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA. The insurance companies watch your Facebook and Twitter posts: 4. Get medical attention asap: 5. Try to avoid giving med providers YOUR insurance/Medicare/ Medicaid information: 6. Ideally you should contact a Lawyer immediately: If no attorney, the insurance company can contact you to get a statement. Then your lawyer will never know what you said or what the adjuster/investigator thought s/he heard you say: 7.Let your lawyer assist in obtaining medical care on a lien with a doctor that knows how to write a medical report: 8. Don’t use insurance co body shop: 9. Purchase high insurance limits including UM: 10. Do not sign anything.
DRINKING AND TEXTING BOTH CAUSE ACCIDENTS OR MAKE A DRIVER LESS LIKELY TO AVOID AN ACCIDENT THAT WOULD NOT BE THEIR FAULT. BEING INTOXICATED IS JUST AS SERIOUS AS BEING INTEXTICATED. A DRIVER MUST DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO AVOID AN AT FAULT ACCIDENT. THE BOTTOM LINE IS “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”
Ideas for future columns contact Dale Gribow 760- 837- 7500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Legal Representation Of The Injured and Criminally Accused
“TOP LAWYER” – California’s Prestige Magazine, Palm Springs Life (PI/DUI) 2011-21
“TOP LAWYER” – Inland Empire Magazine 2016-19
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