Personal Injury / Auto Accidents
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TYPES OF INJURIES WE HANDLE
Slips and Falls
Slander and Libel
Animal Bites or Attacks
ACCIDENT AND PERSONAL INJURY CLAIMS
Sustaining a personal injury can be a frightening, costly experience. It can be even more unsettling when caused by another person's negligence. If your accident or injury was caused through another party's careless behavior, you may be legally entitled to monetary compensation. The experienced attorneys of Brindle McCormack, P.C. can be your advocates in getting what you deserve. We can help you get back on your feet.
HOW LONG AFTER AN ACCIDENT DO I HAVE TO FILE A CLAIM?
You should seek legal assistance as soon as possible after you have been injured. You want your claims established in their best posture from the onset. There are many important deadlines. If you miss a deadline, it may prevent you from filing a claim. Each state sets its own deadlines, called statutes of limitations, for filing claims. In addition, not all the deadlines are the same; different types of claims have different deadlines. Some claims, like injuries on the job, are required to be reported immediately. Some claims against public parties, like cities, states or other governmental agencies, have different, often shorter, deadlines than claims against private parties. Talk to your lawyer as soon as possible if you want to know how long you have to file a claim.
WHAT KIND OF COMPENSATION ARE AVAILABLE?
You may be able to collect different kinds of compensation for monetary losses. Possible compensation includes costs for medical, hospital, dental, surgical, ambulance, rehabilitative, and prosthetic services; nursing care; funeral expenses; loss of income; and child care.You may also be entitled to damages for pain; mental suffering; emotional distress; humiliation; injury to reputation; loss of care, comfort, companionship and society; loss of consortium; inconvenience; and interference with normal and usual activities apart from employment.These types of compensation are not available in all types of cases. Talk to your lawyer if you have questions about the types of damages you may be entitled to recover.
WHAT WILL IT COST ME TO BRING A PERSONAL INJURY SUIT?
We provide free consultations to all persons who have personal injury claims. At that time, we will evaluate your case and tell you what its chances are for success. A consultation does not in any way obligate you to continue with the litigation process.The attorneys at Brindle McCormack, P.C. use a contingent fee agreement which bases their attorneys' fees on a percentage of the money they recover for you. In other words, if you do not collect money, you do not pay an attorney's fee. You may be responsible for other small costs such as court filing fees, medical records costs, or police report costs.
HOW DO JUDGES AND JURIES DETERMINE THE AMOUNT I WILL RECOVER?
Assuming that you can prove the first part of your case (that the other party is responsible for your injuries, often called the question of liability), the judge or jury (or in some cases an arbitrator) will use many factors to determine the monetary value of your claim. These factors include: amount of medical expenses, whether injuries are permanent, the type of permanent injury (for example, total disability, reduced motion, or persistent pain or weakness), previous physical injuries, whether alcohol or drugs were involved, the percentage of fault of each party, age, occupation, lost income, earning capacity, ability to resume present employment, or other effects the injury has had on you.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
The length of time to get an award in your case will vary for many reasons. Length is affected by the nature of your injuries, whether there is any current or planned treatment, whether the responsible parties are insured, who the responsible parties are, whether a lawsuit is filed, the time line of a county court, whether the case must be arbitrated or mediated, and whether there are motions in your case -- just to name a few.Our attorneys work to obtain a settlement for you as soon as possible. Most cases settle before a lawsuit is filed. Even for those cases in which a lawsuit is filed, the case is likely to settle long before trial.
WHAT SHOULD I DO AT THE SCENE OF AN AUTO ACCIDENT?
Cases are often won or lost on the behavior of the parties at the scene of the accident. The following are tips to ensure the success of your case while at the scene.
If you are injured or feel unable to drive, seek medical assistance immediately.
Even though you may feel unharmed at the time of the accident, you may have sustained injuries, bruises, soreness, aches and pains that are not immediately apparent at the scene of the accident. Bruising, stiffness, soreness, and other injuries may not be apparent until the next day when you can't move. Unless you are in pain and require medical attention, volunteer no information about your condition at the scene of the accident. Get a checkup as soon as possible after the accident to ensure that you know the full extent of your injuries.
Do not move your vehicle unless it is necessary for safety reasons. Recording the original placement and condition of the vehicle is crucial to the diagrams and photographs that will comprise much of your evidence.
Do not drive away from the scene of the accident. You could be held liable for hit and run or for criminally negligent behavior.
Exchange insurance information with other drivers. Include the make, model, and license number of your vehicle, your daytime and evening addresses and phone numbers, and your insurance company name and policy number.
Take the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of anyone who witnessed the accident.
You should also note the conditions of the vehicles, the road, traffic lights, and warning signs. You should take note of whether the other drivers and passengers were wearing seat belts. The physical appearance of the drivers is also important, especially if a driver is under the influence of alcohol of other controlled substances.
If there is a camera available, take photographs of the scene.
WHAT CAN I DO TO STRENGTHEN MY CASE?
Preparation is the most important thing you can do to increase your chances of winning a personal injury claim. A large part of this preparation can be done before you visit your attorney.
Contact an attorney as soon as you think you may have a claim. If your claim is valid, the attorney will be more effective with access to fresher evidence. If your claim is not valid, the attorney may save you the wasted effort of further investigation.
Return to the scene of the accident as soon as possible. Record placement of major landmarks (such as a large tree that may have blocked your vision), and take measurements and photographs if you have not already done so.
Visit a doctor as soon as possible after the accident, even if you think that you are unharmed by the accident.
As soon as you can after your accident or injury, write down everything you can remember about the event. This may include placement of skid marks, time of day, weather conditions, or diagrams. Photographs of your injuries, vehicle, or the area where the accident occurred are also very helpful.
Be careful when speaking to police officers and insurance adjusters. Give necessary information, and don't speculate about the answers to their questions. Do not speak to the other party's insurance company without the approval of your attorney.
Don't sign any documents that you have not discussed with your attorney unless they are for your insurance company or the police.
Keep accurate records of medical payments, telephone calls to other parties, and other relevant incidents. Document all expenses related to your injury. Don't forget to include expected revenues that the accident has denied you, such as lost wages, or unexpected costs it has incurred, such as transportation costs to and from doctor's appointments. Include everything you can. Your attorney will help you sort out reasonable from unreasonable claims.
This information is not intended as legal advice and is not intended to be applied to any specific situation. If you have legal questions, you should consult an attorney.