Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do I have a case?
To have a personal injury case, you must show that you have been injured through the fault of another, whether by negligence, intentional misconduct or strict liability.
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What is my case worth?
The worth of a case is based on a number of factors. For example, the nature of the injury causing event, the severity of the injury, the amount of pain the injury causes, and whether the injury has lingering effects are all issues that affect the value of a case. However, only after all the information is gathered and negotiations have begun can your case truly be evaluated.

As we determine the value of a case, we take the following into consideration, which a personal injury claimant may be entitled to recover:

  • Past and future medical bills
  • Past and future lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental and physical disability
  • Disfigurement and scars
  • Emotional trauma
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of love and affection
  • Property damage
  • Out-of-pocket expenses

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Should I give the insurance company a recorded statement?
No. You should not talk to an insurance company without first consulting with a lawyer. It is common practice for insurance adjusters to request that injury claimants give recorded statements immediately following injury producing event. These recorded statements are then later used against the injury claimants.
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What do I do if an insurance adjuster offers me a settlement?
Before accepting a settlement, it is always in your best interest to consult with a lawyer. Adjusters work for the insurance company, not for you, and their job is to settle the matter for the lowest possible expense to their company. A lawyer's expertise is vital for injury victims that are ready to settle their cases, as a lawyer will ensure that your rights are protected.
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Do I need a lawyer?
For small, property damage claims with no personal injury, you probably do not need a lawyer. However, for any claim involving a personal injury, it is unwise to attempt to handle your own claim. Insurance companies do not make their profits by paying, but by not paying. Insurance adjusters are very skilled at obtaining the information they need from you to deny or minimize your claims.

There is a statute of limitations that affects your case. Depending upon the circumstances of your case, the statute of limitations requires that a suit be filed within a specific period of time. If you fail to file suit within the proper time limit, you will be prohibited from obtaining any compensation for your injuries.

Finding witnesses and gathering evidence to support your case becomes more difficult the longer your wait. Therefore, you should consult a lawyer as soon as possible. Feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.
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How do I find a lawyer that I can trust?
We understand that any meaningful relationship is based on trust. Trust your instincts. Discuss your concerns with us and form impressions about what you are being told. Beware of lawyers who tell you what you want to hear in order to get your business. Choose a lawyer that answers your questions, seems genuinely concerned about your problems, and creates realistic expectations. Furthermore, retain a lawyer who specializes in personal injury cases, has experience and the ability and means to go to trial if needed.
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What do lawyers charge?
We work on a "contingency fee" basis. This means that you do not have to pay unless we collect money for you. Our fee is based on a percentage of the money collected. Typically, this fee is 33%. Remember, if we do not collect for you, you do not owe us any money.
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If I hire a lawyer, will he or she take most of my settlement?
This is a very common question. The lawyer should be honest with you and tell you if his or her services will help you. Most of the time you will make more money hiring a lawyer. We turn away cases if our fee does not help an injured victim. However, please feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.
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The insurance company says I can handle the case myself without a lawyer. Is this a good idea?
Since a consultation is free, it won't hurt to ask if we can help. Having worked with insurance companies on thousands of cases, we know that no matter how nice insurance adjusters may sound on the phone, they have one goal in mind above all others—to pay you as little as possible. They are trained to do this.

Insurance companies do not work for you. They are not trained, nor are they qualified, to explain your legal rights. They will not give you a fair assessment of the value of your case.

If your injuries are significant, a good attorney can help you in numerous ways. When you hire a lawyer who is willing to take a case to trial, value is added to your case. A good lawyer will seek every category of damages that applies to your case, finding ways to support those damages with evidence that will be admissible in court. Also, the threat of trial itself adds to your bargaining power. Make no mistake: the insurance company knows that it's almost impossible for an injury claimant to take a case to trial and win without a lawyer.
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Must I go to Court if I hire a lawyer?
No. You decide if your case goes to court. Most personal injury cases are settled out of court.
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What if I don't want to sue anyone?
Personal injury cases do not have to result in a lawsuit. We understand that lawsuits are not pleasant, and we strive to do all that we can to resolve your case short of filing a lawsuit. If a lawsuit is necessary, we will make the process as easy on you as possible, helping you every step of the way.
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Do you allow free consultations?
Absolutely! You may contact us by telephone, fax, or e-mail. Our telephones are answered 24 hours a day. If you have a personal injury or wrongful death case, we will schedule a consultation appointment that fits your schedule. We will attempt to schedule the meeting around your work and personal obligations so as to minimize the inconvenience to you.
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Why should I choose you as my lawyer?
Personal injury and wrongful death cases are our only business. We do not attempt to handle divorces, wills, criminal cases, or any other type of case. When you do one thing all day, every day, for over nearly fifteen years, you become very good at it. We have successfully resolved thousands of personal injury claims and recovered approximately $75 million on behalf of our clients since we opened our doors. We receive countless referrals from satisfied clients.
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If you take my case, what will I have to do?
If you hire us as your attorney, you will be a significant part of your case. We may ask you to help us gather information and documentation to support your case. You will need to keep us informed about your medical treatment and physical limitations. If we have to file a lawsuit for your case, you will need to participate in this process. We will help you every step of the way.
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How long will it take?
The time it takes to settle a personal injury case depends on the circumstances surrounding the case. The more complex the case the longer it may take to settle. Most cases are resolved within a few months to a year. However, some cases may take longer, especially if the claim is disputed by the defendant or his/her insurance company and lawsuit must be filed.

We have successfully represented thousands of people with a wide range of personal injury claims. Every claim is different. Feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.
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I have a lawyer. Can I fire him and get a new one?
Yes, you have the right to fire your current lawyer and hire a new lawyer. It is common practice that your new lawyer and old lawyer will share the eventual fee. The new lawyer will pay your old lawyer a portion of the fee for his or her services. If there is a dispute as to this amount, an arbitrator or judge will make the final decision. The bottom line is that you should not have to pay more than your agreed fee percentage. Feel free to contact our office and we will provide greater detail.
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How do I know which auto insurance company to choose?
Many people think that all auto insurance companies are the same. Nothing could be further from the truth. Check around and look not only for the best rates but for good service. Often you are trading service for lower premiums, so you get what you pay for.
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What are the different types of coverages that I can have for my auto insurance policy?
The basic types of coverage are liability, uninsured (and underinsured motorist), collision, comprehensive, medical payments (or PIP), roadside assistance (towing) and rental reimbursement. In order to have full coverage, you need all of these types of insurance. You should also try to get the highest limits for your liability, uninsured/underinsured and medical payments coverages that you can afford. Many insurance agents only recommend that you get the state mandated minimums. However, this is not enough coverage if you are involved in an accident with serious injuries.
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What information should I bring to the initial meeting with my lawyer?
You should try to bring with you to our initial meeting as much of the following information and/or documentation that you can reasonably obtain before our meeting. Don't worry if you have not collected all of it. We will work together to gather what is needed after we meet in person.

  • Anything that you believe is related to the accident, your vehicle, or your injuries or treatment;
  • The name, address and telephone of your primary care physician
  • A copy of your health insurance card;
  • The names, address, phone numbers of all witnesses to the accident;
  • The name, address and phone number of the person responsible for causing the accident, along with his/her drivers license number, insurance information including company name, policy number and his/her vehicle year, make, model and license plate number;
  • The name, address, phone number and claim number of your insurance company adjuster;
  • The name, address, phone number and claim number of the insurance company adjuster for the person responsible for causing the accident;
  • All correspondence and documents sent to you by anyone;
  • A copy of the law enforcement traffic collision report (or the card identifying the report number and the telephone number to obtain same) if a traffic collision report was prepared;
  • All discharge papers from any hospital or emergency room at which you received treatment for your injuries;
  • The name, address and telephone number of every medical provider that has treated you for your injuries;
  • A copy of your current declarations page from your insurance company that was in force on the date of the accident;
  • The name, address and telephone of the location of your vehicle if it is at a body repair shop;
  • A copy of the property damage estimate for your vehicle;
  • Digital photographs on a CD or a compact flash card depicting the damage to your vehicle;
  • Digital photographs on a CD or compact flash card that show the area where the accident occurred.

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This information is not intended to serve as legal advice or as a substitute for consultation with an attorney. Specific legal issues, concerns, and conditions always require the advice of appropriate legal professionals. These answers are intended to provide general information only.

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