This weekend is LABOR DAY, a holiday that attracts lots of tourists and traffic. I remember coming here every Labor Day for the poolside parties at the PS Riviera Hotel and cruising Palm Canyon with water guns. Of course we will see checkpoints throughout the CV. The main purpose of checkpoints is not for DUI arrests, but rather to warn us to drive safely.
My Legal Columns and radio show were entitled, “Accidentally Yours”. I informed my readers/listeners to write down all the facts of how the accident happened. My advice is to always list what hurts, from the top of their head to the bottom of your toes. A lawyer needs this information, and let’s face it, your memory is better shortly after the accident than it is 6 months or several years later.
After the accident, I advise my clients to use their cell phone to take pictures of the damage to the cars, injuries, the other driver’s license, and at fault driver’s insurance card. In addition, victims should get statements from the wits, and get the other driver’s statement. With today’s smartphones, this is easy to do.
When injured, drivers should seek a medical evaluation asap. An ambulance validates the injuries severity and provides the information lawyer need to get you a maximum recovery. Unfortunately, often victims do not want to spend money on the hospital, ER, or ambulance. They don’t realize they will get it back in SPADES in the settlement, if they were not at fault.
Talking to the defense lawyer or defense insurance company adjuster, puts your lawyer at a disadvantage, as it provides INFORMATION to the defense. A client does not always remember what they told the adjuster, and it is not just what the victim said, but what the adjuster/attorney THOUGHT s/he heard them say.”
Clients should take down social media, as it is the latest trick used by the defense in both Accidents and DUI cases. The defense will Google the victim in an auto crash, and check Facebook etc. to gather information on you. They may also contact your Facebook friends to get negative information about you.
For instance, IF you post you were just in an accident and thus were 1 hour late for golf or tennis, it arguably suggests you were not hurt that badly. If while treating, you post about playing a sport, going dancing, or on a ski vacation, this might suggest you were ok and thus faking your injuries…..or so the defense would argue. Obviously, one can be injured and still play tennis or golf, but with some pain.
It is harmful if you delay seeking medical help or see your own family doctor, who says “go home and soak in a hot bath and come back in a month or two.” When you call the next month you are told there are no appointments for 30-60 days. When you see the doc again s/he says the same thing and you return 1-2 months thereafter. After 3 visits, over 6 months, you may be discharged with a bill of $600, and the insurance company offers $1000. Then you want to know why your case wasn’t worth a lot more since you were in pain for 6 months and still hurting?
The bottom line is that, “If you don’t see a doctor on a regular basis, the delay reduces the case value, and the case may not be financially worthwhile for an attorney. In other words, the insurance company will argue if you were really injured you would have found a way to get medical care.”
Ideally, you should see a doctor you have never seen before, so there are no skeletons in your closet when this doctor prepares a medical report. Notes in the doctors file of substance abuse, abortion, venereal disease, prior injuries etc. are negatives to some jurors. In addition, you need to treat with a doctor that knows how to write medical/legal reports. If you delay treatment, the insurance company will argue the treatment may not have been from this accident. They ask how do we know you didn’t Slip and Fall in the shower or at home and they say it was from the accident? The bottom line is that adjusters are paid to downplay the severity of the accident and the amount to be paid to you.
Sooo, protect yourself and retain an experienced LOCAL PI lawyer!
Dale Gribow: Attorney at Law
Representing the Injured and Criminally Accused
“TOP LAWYER” Palm Springs Life (Every year)
“TOP LAWYER” Inland Empire Magazine
AV Martindale Hubbell: where peers rate your legal ability and ethics
73-061 El Paseo, Suite 220
Palm Desert, CA 92260
Office – 760-837-7500 Fax – 760 837-7502
DRINKING AND TEXTING BOTH CAUSE ARRESTS AND ACCIDENTS, OR MAKE A DRIVER LESS LIKELY TO AVOID A DUI INDUCED ARREST OR 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”.