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Below is a compilation of some personal injury law FAQs. If you do not find the answer to your questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Little Rock personal injury practice or one of our personal injury lawyers Little Rock Arkansas.
What is it that insurance companies do not want me to know?
- Insurance companies often pay 100-200% more to people who are represented by attorneys.
- The adjuster working for the insurance company wants to minimize the compensation.
- Insurance companies tend to drag out the claim in the hope that you quit.
- Insurance companies may offer a quick settlement with an attractive enough check. However, your claim may be worth a lot more than that.
- The insurance business is highly profitable, companies that lost money they did so not because of insurance claims but because of bad investments.
- The extent of car damage may not reflect the seriousness of the injury. The car can be severely damaged, whereas the person may walk away with minor injuries. Similarly, the vehicle may suffer minor damages, but the driver can be seriously injured.
- There is no lawsuit explosion in personal injury. In the past decade, the number of personal injury lawsuits has dropped by about 20%.
When is the best time to contact an attorney?
As soon as possible. There is a time limit for filing your claim, and the longer you wait, the more difficult it is to interview witnesses and collect evidence to support your case.
Should I contact my own insurance company after an accident?
Definitely yes. Many insurance companies require that you give them a prompt notice of the accident. Failure to comply may result in the cancellation of your coverage. However, if they request a statement, you should consult with an attorney before you do so.
Should I talk to the insurance company of the other party about my injury?
It is best not to unless you decide that you want to pursue the claim on your own. You may say something or agree to something that can weaken the case. Let your attorney handle the matter professionally and adequately.
How can I pay my medical bills if my case is still pending?
If you have accident insurance, the insurance provider pays up to a specific limit. The balance can be paid once you receive the settlement, and your medical provider may agree to hold the outstanding balance and continue providing treatment. Your attorney can help to establish a level of trust with your provider by giving updates on how your case is progressing.
What should I do in a car accident?
First, depending on the severity of the accident, call 911. Then document the accident, take pictures, get medical attention even if the injuries may seem to be minor, and report the accident to the police or the DMV. Keep notes on how your condition changes; do not admit anything and do not apologize. Finally, contact your attorney and let him handle the legal matters.
What is no-fault insurance, and why should I have it?
Nearly half the states require this type of insurance. This is useful insurance that eliminates liability claims for smaller accidents by exchanging direct payments with the injured’s insurance company. Unfortunately, it does not cover property, e.g., car, damage.
I neglected to go to the doctor after the accident, and now I have pain. What should I do?
Go to the doctor right away and keep notes on when the pain first appeared and how your condition changed.
If the person at fault does not have insurance, can I get compensation?
The person at fault may have assets that may be used to get you compensation.
My car ran into a pothole, who is at fault?
The city that has jurisdiction over the road with the pothole in it.
What is a counterclaim?
A claim that the other party has against you from the same transaction.
What constitutes negligence?
Negligence contains the following elements:
- lack of reasonable care,
- breach of duty,
- injury to the victim,
- knowing an act would occur but not acting on it (foreseeability), and
For a product liability case, what should I look for?
Several factors come into play:
- was the defect dangerous beyond a reasonable level,
- the seller of the product must still be in business,
- the purchased items must not have been changed,
- the defect directly caused the injury, and
- the product was used correctly.
What is the assumption of risk?
It is a term used against you by the other party as part of their defense. It means that when you use a product, you assume a certain amount of risk.
The other party may show that:
- you knew about the threat but disregarded it,
- you failed to maintain the item correctly, and
- you failed to follow the given instructions.
What is PIP insurance?
It stands for Personal Injury Protection insurance. Some states require that you have personal injury protection as well as property damage liability insurance. Both come with a minimum amount, usually around $10,000.
What if my child is injured?
As a parent or guardian of the child, you will have the responsibility to present the claim. For more details, please visit the child injury page.
Should my health insurance cover the treatment of an injury?
Depending on the type of insurance you have, this may be the simplest way to get your treatment covered. However, you may have to reimburse the insurance company should you receive a settlement.
Does my auto insurance have to pay for medical expenses?
Yes, up to the limit of the medical payment coverage, assuming that you have such coverage on the insurance policy.
What are the national car accident statistics?
- There are more than six million car accidents each year in the United States.
- A person dies in a car accident every 12 minutes, and each year, car crashes kill 40,000 people.
- The leading cause of death for individuals between 2 and 34 years old is motor vehicle crashes.
- Someone is injured by a car crash every 14 seconds and about two million of the people injured in car accidents each year suffer permanent injuries.
- Excessive speed is the second most common cause of deadly auto accidents, which accounts for about 30% of fatal accidents.
- Car accidents are the leading cause of death for children between 2 and 14, and about 2,000 children die each year from injuries caused by car accidents.
- Each year, almost 250,000 children are injured in car crashes, meaning nearly 700 kids are harmed every day.
Can I get compensation if I am partially at fault?
Depending on what state you live in, damages are awarded based on contributory or comparative negligence. The variations are as follows:
- Pure contributory negligence: if you suffered an injury and contributed to the negligence, you recover nothing. Your contribution must be zero!
- Pure comparative negligence: your contribution to the damages is compared to that of the other party and receive the award according to a percentage of your fault. That is if you suffered $50,000 in damages, but the level of your responsibility was found to be 80%, you receive only $10,000, 20% of the costs.
- Modified comparative negligence – 50% rule: you can only recover compensation for damages if your fault level is 49% or less. That is, if you are injured and you are responsible for 50% or more of the costs, you will not recover anything.
- Modified comparative negligence – 51% rule: You may recover compensation if and only if your contribution to the damages was less than half. That is, if you are found responsible for more than 50% of the injuries, you will be barred from receiving any compensation.
Please check with your attorney in your state to see which rule may be applicable in your case.